I believe I can make a solid argument that the most critical and influential musical groups of modern American rock were the Byrds and Buffalo Springfield. Even considering solely the band members, imagine how different the music of the 60s and beyond would have been without Stephen Stills, Neil Young, Dave Crosby, Roger McGuinn and Chris Hillman. Without their influence, would there have been folk rock, country rock, or alt-country. Would there have been Tom Petty, My Morning Jacket, the Jayhawks, Wilco or Son Volt.
In the first few years of the band’s history (they peaked early), most of their memorable songs were covers of Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger, and the original compositions of Gene Clark. Except for a couple of brief reunions, he left the Byrds early on and seemed to disappear from view, but continued to tour and record until his death from heart attack at age 46. I’ve always loved his music, and this is my tribute to a great talent.