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As a teenager, Graham Nash co-founded The Hollies with his school friend, Allan Clarke. They became one of the most popular groups to emerge from the UK as part of the “British Invasion”. Named after their idol Buddy Holly, the Hollies began touring in the United States in 1969 which in time led to Graham meeting David Crosby and Stephen Stills with whom he created one of the most distinctive blends of voices in rock and roll history: Crosby Stills & Nash. Among Graham’s songwriting contributions to CSN and soon thereafter to CSNY was a song never recorded by the Hollies but a perfect fit for CSNY: “Teach Your Children”. The tender call-out to be attentive to your children and to encourage them to dream is a timeless reminder of our responsibilities and an awareness that as they grow into those dreams, they will always love you. The song then takes a turn and admonishes children to teach their parents, to share dreams with them, thus creating a mutual bond of trust and strong shoulders to lean on.
Graham Nash has never lost sight of his sensitivity to children and the world they will inherit. On Nash’s new release, Now, recorded at 81 years old, his song “A Better Life” explores the contagious optimism of an introspective observer who sings, “The world has changed, but the soul remains.”
As children, the road ahead seems long and obscured by many turns. With the guidance of the older generation, sharing the lessons learned and the ones that should be forgotten, we can (hope to) hear them say, that we left them a better life; a life more manageable, more likely to give them space to grow and in turn, reach back and give us that steady shoulder we need when our legs are feeble and our backs a little weakened by the load we carried.
No matter your age, and what you have accomplished, you can always take the time to make a better life for somebody. As Graham Nash says: “children are 25% of the world’s population. But they are 100% of the future.” Reach out by reaching back. Teach children well.
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