First Hit: David is very honest about his life in this self-narrated film.
Being old enough to have seen David playing in the Byrds and have listened to his music in subsequent groups Crosby, Stills & Nash and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, I was looking forward to seeing what he had to say about his very public life.
My favorite singer songwriter is Neil Young, and about two years ago it was made public that Neil and David had ended their relationship. The relationship with Graham Nash had, I believe, already ended. Why? What happened? What’s up?
The film didn’t do a lot to uncover the cause of the breakup of his friendships with people he’s made music with for over forty years, but it did open the door to seeing how all these relationships could have failed, while Crosby takes full responsibility for his part in what has happened in his life.
Late in the film David says, I don’t have a relationship with any of my former musician friends. It was sad.
Much of the early part of the film was about how Crosby slid into his drug induced disrepair. How he treated women, relationships, and his attempts to right these wrongs. He loves music as indicated when if given the choice to have a full, complete and happy family life or music, not both, he would pick music.
He drives us through LA and Laurel Canyon sharing the haunts the Byrds played in Hollywood and then the places they lived. He shows us the house in Graham Nash’s “Our House” about his moments with Joni Mitchell, prior to Graham becoming Joni’s boyfriend and the subject of “Our House.”
David talks about the death of Christine Hinton his love while with the Byrds and how this drastically affected his life. It crushed him. He also talked about how Roger McGuinn and Chris Millman of the Byrds kicked him out of the band. He spoke about how, when Young stopped by and sat on the hood of his car and played David three songs that convinced David to support Young joining Crosby, Stills & Nash.
David was never one of my favorite musicians, however, I felt for David and the earnestness from which he shared is struggles including, jail time, drug addiction and his love and appreciation to his current wife Jan.
Director A.J. Eaton did a great job of folding in archival footage and interviews with some of David’s friends, former friends, his wife Jan, and David himself.
Overall: I loved this film because I grew up with David as part of my life, my music life, and he seemed open and honest to who he was then and now.