The Neil Diamond Homepage

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR, 1997


Please feel free to reply to these, or send you thoughts and feedback.

Thanks!

Vol 26: November 23, 1997
Joe,
Thanks for this excellent tribute to the incredible Neil Diamond. It's great to see how many Neil fanatics there are out there...and of all ages!!!! I come from a family of seven kids (which I still consider myself at the age of 39) and we are all die-hard Neil fans. My first concert was 1976 at the now defunct Chicago Stadium, but my favorite memory is from the December 1993 concert at the United Center. Thanks to my youngest brother, Tony (a true Neil fanatic ), we sat six rows from the stage. I also have a personally autographed photo of Neil that my brother was able to talk Neil's PR people into sending me. (In case you're wondering, my bro works in the radio business here in Chicago.)
The one thing I have found after twenty-some years of listening to and appreciating Neil's music is that when people say they are Diamond fans, they are really Neil Diamond fanatics! He is the only musician that has that affect on me. Neil's Christmas music is turned on before a single package is opened on Christmas day! I would have proposed to my wife with "Marry Me" playing in the background if Neil had written it fifteen years earlier. His love songs were great music to fall in love to!
Your album of the month is a great idea! The first two choices ( Serenade and Beautiful Noise ) are two of my favs. Keep up the good, I mean, EXCELLENT work and I'll keep reading.
Bruce Kwiecinski
Grayslake, Illinois
Bruce58K@aol.com

Je vous adresse mes chaleureuses salutations depuis Paris et souhaite vous voir prochainement chez nous pour un concert.
Beatrice Jurich
Le 23/12/1997

Dear Joe,
I was impressed by the number of guys my age that have a like or love of Neil Diamond. That is totally cool, cause I thought that I was the only person at 21 years old that is a male who's favorite artist is Neil Diamond. Thanks for having the forum for letters so people like me can find stuff out like this. I would also like to just express to you and if this letter is published to all who read it: NEIL DIAMOND is the best person to come along in music ever. He is the ultimate songwriter, singer, and performer. Many may say that his voice is raspy, craggy, or not good, but on the contrary, it contributes to what Mr. Diamond is trying to convey, and I wish I could imitate. His style is so unique which puts him in the class of Frank Sinatra in my opinion. He has written almost everything he has sung, so he is above Elvis Presley in my opinion. The Beatles are totally different so they don't count, and the only reason that Elton John is in the picture is cause he has had so much success with this Princess Diana single. Mr. Diamond is the King of Pop, not Michael Jackson. Look at the track record thoroughly ANYONE and you'll see what I mean.
Trevor
E-mail: GQ5341@aol.com

To:Joe Imhof
From:Teresa
Hi,this is the first time I've loged on.I'm a huge Diamond fan but I havent had the luck of seeing a live show.The first thing I looked up on the web was a page on my favorite singer(all with the help of my daughter),and I must say,your page is FABULOUS!!!
I lived in the states many years but never had the chance to see "HIM" live.Now back in my country(Chile,South America)I'd just die to see Mr.Diamond live.<
If you have any info on the posibility of Neil "COMING TO AMERICA" at all please let me know through E-MAIL because I don't really log on that much.
Thanks For The Fab Page Teresa Fuentes
P.S.:An excellent place to have him live would be at the"Quinta Vergara"in Vina Del Mar.My E-Mail address is: fkeller@asintec.cl

I am 36 years old and have been a DIAMOND GIRL for over 25 years! I think he is not only the best singer but entertainer and one talented human being. I am going to give all my support for Neil Diamond to be elected to the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. My last very wish in life someday will be to personally meet the man I have admired and adored for som many years!!!! Can't tell you how many flowers and letters have been left on stage from me - one of the biggest fans!!!!!

Just wanted to let you know about a very special concert happening in Calgary, Alberta, Canada on February 21, 1998. On that evening the Calgary Philharmonic will be performing A Pops Tribute to the Music of Neil Diamond as part of tenth anniversary gala fundraiser for the PREP program. PREP is a resource centre for children with Down syndrome. With the help of PREP kids who were once segregated in special classes and schools for the handicapped, are now able to attend regular schools in their neighbourhoods and grow up as contributing members of their communities. Funds raised via the concert will be used to help PREP become a year round, one stop resource centre for children, parents and educators! For more information about PREP or the concert, please visit the PREP web site at www.cadvision.com/prepprog.
Sincerely,
Helen Winkler
Parent Volunteer for the PREP Program

Hi! I am a huge fan of Neil Diamond and have been ever since I was a kid! My favorite song is definitely "America!" I have a ton of his tapes, and I went to one of his concerts last year in St. Louis, MO. I am a teenager, so not many of my friends are aware of the best singer ever--Neil Diamond! I have to admit that I am a little bit obsessed. My boyfriend and I even belt out his "You Don't Bring Me Flowers," and I get to be Barbara Streissand! I really wanted to get in touch with Neil personally to see about getting an autograph for my boyfriend, who I have converted into a Neil Diamond fan also. It would make the perfect birthday present for him, and his birthday is coming up in December. If any of you other Neil Diamond fans could help me out, I would really appreciate it! Please e-mail me at lesupt@htc.net
Thanks! :)
Ginger

Dear Joe:
I work in a very hectic office and people are constantly remarking that I am the only one who always smiles and who is always in a good mood! What's my secret? I have my CD player constantly playing Neil Diamond! Who else could lift your spirits the way he does! I can still remember the first time I heard Cherry, Cherry. It seems like yesterday, but I guess it is true that time flies when you are having fun!
I get kidded quite a bit about my FONDness for Neil. My license plate says "NEIL FAN" and I have even taped a rather large picture of Neil in the inside of my sunroof. So when people look down at my car from my office windows, guess who they see looking back up at them!
Neil is just the greatest person, thing, or state of mind you could ever experience. He deserves so much to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame! He deserves to be there NOW so he will know how much his fans truly do love him!
Lois

Hi Joe. I just wanted all my fellow Neil fans (who are/were John Denver fans) that on March 1, 1998 I will be running the Calistoga-Napa marathon for John's charity, the Windstar Foundation, in his memory. I have contacted the charity and they will be providing me with the t-shirt and paperwork. John's death affected me a lot and wanted in some small way to keep his memory alive.
Marianne
MZoricak@corp.adaptec.com

Hi there from Germany!
I found a link to your site on the "Diamondville"-page and being CRAZY over Neilīs music, Iīll tell you about my opinion on "Beautiful Noise":
On a scale from 1-10 I think itīs a big 9 (not a 10 because some songs I regard as a little bit too pathetic, especially "Home Is A Wounded Heart").
My favourite songs are "Donīt Think...Feel" and "If You Know What I Mean" - (Do I really HAVE to mention "Beautiful Noise"???????) As mentioned above, Iīm not so crazy about "Home Is A Wounded Heart" (schmaltzy!!)
Talking about the cover, I just really think itīs one of the best Neil Diamond record covers, the picture inside as well as the front cover. (At the age of 15, I used to paint it on my t-shirt...)
WELL... I conclude that BN is one of my all-time favourites...
Good luck and greetings from Duesseldorf in Germany!! A 22-year-old fan is very pleased by your site!! ;-))

Vol 25: October 19, 1997
I know some people on the board have been pessimistic about Neil's chances for the Hall of Fame, but I think we should state our case.
---Regina Litman Here is the address for the Hall, thanks to Regina. Please write and show your support for Neil!
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation
c/o Susan Evans
1240 Avenue of the Americas, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10104
U.S.A.

Hello Joe,
I was trying to e-mail the Diamondville, but I guess their computer may as well run out of memory and still could not accomodate all of the fans's messages, so I want to use this opportunity and to talk to the people on your site. By the way, what a nice place you have here, so warm and friendly...and thank you for giving us the chance to share our feelings!
After reading all the letters (at least for 1997) I guess I am just a new comer to the world of Neil Diamond...but I got hooked really badly. The first time I heard Neil, I thought that I heard THE MUSIC for the first time (I really didn't mean to offend other musicians)! I never heard such sincerity and kindness. You know how it fills and I can't say it better than Neil Diamond said it in his songs.
And regarding the nomination of Neil to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: I don't care much about the style and many other "physical" aspects of songwriting, but I know one thing - music is supposed to make you feel good and not like commiting suicide because life is so tough. And I also know that neither Rolling Stones, Beatles, Elton John or even Bob Dylan could touch my soul like Neil Diamond did. Isn't it what the music is all about? I hope Neil will get recognition from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and wish that every fan would show some support.
Hope to see you sometime again!
***Kristina, Coquitlam, CANADA
P.S. By the way, WE HERE, IN CANADA, appreciate Neil and waiting for his next tour.
Oh-yes! And my favourite song is SEPTEMBER MORN!!!

I hope that I am not out of line here. But recently the world lost a great entertainer and humanitarian in John Denver. John was very inspirational to me while I was growing up. He inspired me in many areas of my life today. Unfortunately I never got to tell him while he was alive. Neil Diamond has also been very inspirational in my life. I listen to Neil all the time. His songs touched me in many ways. He has a tremendous voice, many times bringing me to tears. His songs bring back memories of my teen years. I guess what I am trying to say is that I appreciate him and love him in many ways and wanted him to know that. I am a true fan who appreciates his talents, but I do not consider myself a fanatic. I just want to express to him my gratitude for his gift to humanity and to let him know that there are lots who care, hopefully before its too late. I just want to say "I love you Neil Diamond"!!!
JHansen253

To: Joe Imhof From: Clyde Imhoff (2 "F"s)
May I add my condolences to those I'm sure have been sent by others, to fans of John Denver. I never really was a big fan of his, but he certainly wrote some terrific songs. I think he was more a rival of Neil, than a friend, but I believe they were on good terms. They shared the same manager for years, Jerry Weintraub.
Back in the late seventies, one year that Denver was hosting the Grammy Awards, Neil was the presenter for best album (the Bee Gees won for Saturday Night Fever, which I remember only because Neil presented it). I recall that Denver gave Neil a rousing introduction, and then he came up to present the award. They were on top of the world then, and still were right on to today.
My understanding is that John Denver had been in fine voice in recent performances, and seemed to be at peace. He never was quite as stable as Neil, nor would I put him in quite the same league as Neil. But he had lasted, as only a few from the 70s had, because he was a cut above the "fifteen minutes of fame" that most pop stars get.
He deserved better then death at 53. So did his family. He was a good father, also. Condolences to his children.
To fellow fans of Neil, this thought: We worried over his recent MILD health problems, and now fight for his getting the honors he deserves (mind you, he did get a Lifetime Achievement tribute from previous honoree Stevie Wonder at the American Music Awards about 7 years ago...and he is in the Songwriter Hall of Fame). But to think back on Princess Diana, a fellow "Diamondhead", and now to mourn John Denver, to whom he was so often compared... is to realize that Neil Diamond is a lucky man, and so are his fans. We must give thanks that we don't have to go through what admirers of those we've lost are going through.
Another master of the popular song, Billy Joel, seemed to believe it when he wrote "Only the good die young...". But that wasn't really true. He turned out to be a survivor, and so is Neil. So is Paul Simon. And Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Gordon Lightfoot, and Randy Newman. In my book, Neil is at the head of the class. John Denver was in the same class. He'll be missed.

..."and the radio played like a carnival tune... as we lay in our bed in the other room...Here's to the songs we used to sing, here's to the song's we used to know...its hard to hold them in our arms again...but...hard to let them go."


God Bless You, Mr. Neil Diamond.
John Denver, may you be at peace.

Many people don't realize that Neil Diamond played in the remake of the "Jazz Singer" and what a SPECTACULAR job he did. I would like to share with you a moment in my life that will always be a special reminder to those in my heart that know that I adore Neil's music and acting. My family lived in San Diego, CA in the early 80's and I wanted so badly to have my very own copy of the movie "The Jazz Singer" I had watched it every time it was on television and had taped my own copy but, I wanted the real thing. My daughters, all three of them, decided to surprise me with my own store bought copy of the movie for my Christmas present. I received it on Xmas morning only to find out that it was the "2nd" copy they had bought. They had wrapped the first one and put it under the tree and the dog decided that he wanted to "eat that particular package".
When the girls got in from school they saw what had happened and immediately went into shock. "what were they going to do"?, that was the last copy the store had on hand. They took it upon themselves to call every video store in San Diego County until they found one with a copy and that would sell it to them at a "premium cost". They went and got it for me because of my adoration for Mr. Diamond. I will always cherish that tape and play it at least once a month. My husband always asks me when I am going to play it again so he knows when to "leave me alone with my adorable Neil"!!
Thanks for letting me share this story with you. I treasure that tape and all of Neil's CD's that my car and home stereo are loaded with. I even play them on my computer while I am working. What a joy to listen to such a beautiful voice coming from such a wonderful and warm human being. Thank you Neil for being part of my life and my love for music.
Ann Snowden
Olton, Texas

I'm newly on line and I just wanted to say hello. I am, of course, a Neil Diamond fan and I happened upon it by chance. When I first started singing a few years ago I had alot of people tell me I should try some ND songs 'cause I sounded alot like him.
As soon as I started doing his songs I fell in love with his lyrics and melodies and now I pretty much devote my performances to Diamond songs. Last year I started getting requests from various "Legends" promoters to do Neil Diamond tributes. Although I chose not to perform with any of them I have done several shows already. The last show I did was sold out and my upcoming show (with an Elvis impersonator) is also going to be sold out (or so I'm told).
Anyway, I just wanted to say hello and introduce myself. I love the web page and hope to have my own soon. I'm also planning on recording a "dance mix" version of Soolaimon sometime this winter. I hope Neil wouldn't mind that I'm introducing his music to my generation (20-35). He definitely breaks the generation gap!
Salaman,
Marc Fournier - (Augsknight@aol.com)

I am a 25 year old female whom is extremely grateful for the opportunity to share her thoughts and feelings about Mr. Diamonds music. Most of my friends either laugh or make jokes about the fact that I enjoy listening to his music --- I don't care --- it's music that I have grown up listening to -- it's powerful, inspiring, calming and I can understand all of the words --- we now listen to his music on compact discs but I still own some extremely worn out albums --- any way thanks a bunch for years of entertainment and I am working on a third generation of listeners -- my son Harley he likes Forever in Blue Jeans.

Dear Joe,
My generation absolutely cringes at the thought that I could love Neil like I do. I believe that I am the only 21 year old in the whole world who gets ready to party by listening and jamming to Neil. He puts you in an incredible "good time" mood. I have two of his CDs in my car right now and have to turn him down at red lights to stay away from snickering faces. I first went to one of his concerts in 9th grade and went to another a year ago both in Fort Worth. He is one of the best live! I just wanted to say that even youngin's like me love Neil and respect the work of your web page. Keep up the good work!
Cole
(Mijole @ AOL.com)
P.S. I was wondering if Neil was inspired by Lord Byron's poem "Don Juan" for the song "Desiree". I would appreciate it if you would get back to me if you could find anything out.

Hello fellow fans of Neil Diamond. I am a 19 year old who likes Neil Diamond. My name is Bryan L. Hood and I live outside of Indianapolis, Indiana. I want to let you all know that there are teens who enjoy Neil Diamond. I own several albums and I always watch the JAZZ SINGER. If anyone has any comments you can reach me via E-MAIL at blhood@iupui.edu
Thank you for listening to me and keep in mind that I am a 19 year old American teenager who truly likes Neil Diamond. By the way my favorite song is AMERICA.

Vol 24: October 11, 1997
Info you may want to share with your readers concerning a campaign to get Neil in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. They have an internet site with address of http://www.rockhall.com and once there you can connect direct to e-mail or go to the inductees forum. Sadly, Neil had a fan nominate him in May of this year and only 2 yes votes had been added since then. We won't get him in that way. All fans need to visit this site and express their views.
---Jason Taylor

C’mon, fans, lets ALL do this!!! Vote for Neil!!!!!!

First of all, thank you to Joe Imhof for publishing my letter on his home page. What a thrill and honor it was to see it there today. I am humbled and truly grateful for your response. Please tell everyone I received a gracious response letter from Billboard, and if they want to send their own response, send it to Timothy White, who is the editor-in-chief of Billboard. Also, more importantly, does anybody know if the NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts Society (I think)) or the rock n' roll hall of hame have a web site or address to send it to? Let's go for it everybody- let's make some forceful, but respectful & polite noise!!!! Attached is the response I got from Billboard:

Dear Mr. Basta:
I am in receipt of your September 15 letter regarding Neil Diamond. I, too, am a fan of his, both as a songwriter and a performer. I am sure he would appreciate the devotion that you hold for his body of work.

As far as our special issue salutes and our Century Awards, I really have no authority over either. The salutes like the one we did for Elton John and Bernie Taupin are almost always pegged to specific evevnts, such as the anniversary of a performer's career. Our Century winners are selected by editor in chief Timothy White and publisher Howard Lander.

I will, however, be happy to pass your letter on to Mr. Lander, Mr. White, and our special issues team.

As far as NARAS or the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame are concerned, Billboard does not pretend to have direct influence over their decisions so you'll have to look for other vehicles to lobby support for Neil's credentials.

Regards,
Geoff Mayfield
Director of Charts
cc: Howard Lander, Timothy White, Jim Beloff, Gene Sculatti

Hi Joe,

I'd like to add a comment to Mr. Basta's well written letter to Billboard. Another unforgettable fact is that Neil has many hits and standards that have become modern day classics and that he has written the majority of them himself.

This is another reason that Neil's talent should be recognized. Not many artists can break records like this with his own name credited with the songwriting.

--Cliff

Everyone says I am very opinionated and always have to put my two cents in - so here goes. Recently purchased the "Tennessee Moon" cassette and the most beautiful song I have heard in a long time is on it. The title "Reminensce for a While" It's one of those songs you could listen to over and over and never tire of it. Puts some of the junk on the radio to absolute shame. Have been a Neil Diamond fan for a long time and hope someday to attend one of his concerts.

--Anita

I'm a Neil Diamond fan who only gets to listen on the unique occasion I hear him on the radio (not often enough) or even more uniquely on Television. I happened to catch the last 4 minutes of a late night Sat. movie which ended with a song by Neil... and me mesmerized. It was really a cool moment(s).

I was hoping you might know (of) the movie, soundtrack, album, etc. The song was basically a list of celebrity names, most of them highly noteworthy, along with pictures of these people to the music. I believe it was a movie, not a video, but only know it was on cable tv.

Thanks for your help on this!

Dan.

Hi Joe,

This is my first visit to this web page and I am so glad I found it. I was in a somber mood tonight and needed a pick-me-up so I just finished watching "The Jazz Singer".The tape just came today from my video club. I think it is the first time I have seen it since it originally came out ?? years ago and I remembered everything about the movie. But wow - Neil's songs in that movie are some of his best.

I was fortunate to see him in concert in Kansas City in July, '96 and was absolutely thrilled by his outstanding performance!! I could have stayed all night. It was the first concert my husband had ever been to and he's 62! (I'm only 42). Neil has fans of all ages - I saw teenagers to 80 year-olds in wheelchairs. This is a tribute that very few entertainers can claim. I am certainly hoping he returns to Kansas City - where we LOVE him - in 1998!!

The web page is great - really packed full of information. Stick by your guns on the issue of keeping Neil's personal life off the page - I support you.

I look forward to visiting this site more often and am eagerly awaiting his 1998 tour plans.

--Gene, Lee's Summit, MO

Vol 23: September 5, 1997

After reading your exchange with several participants over "rumors" and Neil Diamond's "personal life" I felt compelled to comment.
As a radio programmer I'm involved in audience research on a weekly basis. I can tell you the audience of music stations (particularly 35-plus demos which is the heart of Neil Diamond's base) are extremely interested in personal information on their favorite artists. It is among their highest interests in radio content.
Given this data an artist home page should update current personal information on the artist on a consistent basis, if indeed your goal is to serve the audience demands of the artist you're supporting with the page.
Thanks,
Ted McAllister Editors note: Thanks for your input. Its an interesting point you make, and coming from someone in your position/industry makes it even more valid. And, I am sure you are correct, that folks ARE interested in his personal life, this is quite obvious if you were to read many of the letters I recieve, and things on Neil's Sony online board, etc.
Certainly, I believe you are correct, and would guess that somewhere in the range of about 70% of Diamond fans would have a major interest in personal items regarding Neil. However, it is not my goal to encourage this. Fans of current events can read "Time Magazine" or they can read "The National Enquirer". Many may read both. Likewise, I hope that fans of Neil can read my page, and liken it to the "Time Magazine of Neil News". I'm sure most of my readers also read "The Sony Board", which, while it oftens contains lots of factual info and anecdotes in regards to Neil's music, often reads more like the "The National Enquirer of Neil News". Both sites are worthwhile sites for Neil fans to read and participate in, but sometimes (just sometimes) the "Sony Board" comment goes over the line, way over, and that is unfortunate, albiet unavoidable due to human nature. (I read the SB too, to some extent, but post only once in a while.)
I believe the "audience demand of the artist" include both my content, and this other content. However, my goal is to specialize in, and restrict myself to, music-related content. It is my goal to have the best site on the net for such information, and to work as hard as I can to promote Neil's music to the world, and to support and encourage readers interested in Neil's music. It is NOT my goal to have the most readers, if achieving that goal means I have to compromise my principles. Please read on for a sampling of the many letters of support which I recieved:

Joe,
I support your position regarding rumor and innuendo. In my opinion, nothing detracts from a celebration of Neil's music more than idle gossip. Neil's personal life is just that, personal. He has laid bare his soul, through his music for over 30 years. Neil once said "Even poets have secrets". I have a suggestion for the "fans" that desire a forum for their gossip, e-mail each other with your gossip. Joe, I salute you for staying above the fray.
SHOPKUS

Joe,
I feel strongly that you should continue with your policy of staying out of Neil's personal life. Some people love to gossip, but stay above it and don't become a "tabloid" of the internet. You have a wonderful ND website and I believe most of Neil's fans and your readers support your policy. Thank you again for all your work and dedication on your very excellent website that we fans get to enjoy.
Margaret

Hi Joe,
I have read many of the posts about the rumor controversy and I agree 100% with your standpoint. In my opinion, you have the best Neil website online and always keep us up-to-date about tours, albums, etc. Please do not make it a "National Enquirer" type of webpage with stories of his broken marriage, girlfriends, uncomfirmed illnesses, etc.
Even though some may be true, I respect a person's privacy be it a celebrity or otherwise. I view your page to learn what's going on with Neil's MUSIC. That's why I became interested in him in the first place. Don't get me wrong...I wish Neil the best health and life, but that's as far I'll go in commenting on private matters.Neil has the best fans in the world and I for one don't want him disappointed in us.

Hi, Joe:
I agree with your policy of not discussing rumours, etc. regarding Neil's personal life. As big a fan as I am, I believe Neil's privacy is of utmost importance. All this discussion elsewhere on the net amazes me!
Keep up the good work and perhaps I'll see you at one of the upcoming shows. Since nothing is yet cast in stone, I'm not sure what show(s) I will go to.
Best wishes,
Julie L.
P.S. DETROIT RED WINGS RULE!!!!
Editor’s note: I’m sure they will win the cup again - in another 54 years! But this season is the year of Lindros, Gratton and the rest of the Flyboys! By the way, Neil saw his first hockey game on December 9, 1978 at the Spectrum in Philly.

Hi Joe,
Stick to your policy of leaving the personal stuff off the Home Page. Sure, we'd like to know Neil is doing well following surgery, but as you point out, it is none of our business. God forbid our prying into his personal life might lead to a tragedy such as occurred to Princess Diana ... Keep up the good work
Dorothy Elkins

Vol 22: August 29, 1997
Joe,
I am very disappointed in you. This is the official Neil Diamond page, & you won't comment on personal rumors. Do you work for Neil, were you told to do this??
I thought by your comment that Neil didn't have surgery, but apparently he did. So this is not a rumor, but the truth. I think I will get my info else where for awhile.
Judy

Editor’s note: Hmmmm....I hadn’t expected that anyone would be offended by my policy (and frankly, I still don’t understand why). I am sorry if I have angered some folks, that was definitley unintended. However, I must say the following.
Not all rumors turn out to be false, BUT true or untrue, I believe we shouldn’t be ‘GOSSIPING’ about Neil’s personal life (perhaps thats a better word than ‘rumor’?). I never said that any personal rumor was untrue, or that it was true, I simply don’t comment on that) My page is dedicated to Neil and his MUSIC, not his personal life. I wish him the best in his personal life, but besides that I think its none of my business. (and I am sure thats how HE feels about it too, so I try to RESPECT his privacy, whats wrong with that??) I do not work for Neil, nor does he tell me what to say, BUT, if he did ask me to say or not say a particular thing, then I would most definitely do whatever he asks. Why wouldn’t I -- the page is in tribute to him!? Neil’s music is the gift that he has decided to give us, his fans, and this page exists to support him and us, his fans, in all matters regarding his music. I hope that most of you will still read my page wether or not you agree with me, however, if you choose to get your information elsewhere, I respect you decision.......read on for more views on this unexpected controversy.....

Hi Joe,

I do understand your concern over the rumors, but two things get in your way on this. First, no matter the subject good or bad about Neil, the fans are human and are going to discuss it, with both pro and con opinions. Second, this is there constitutional right to do so.

I do not expect you to post anything on your board that is only a rumor, especially one that could be hurtful to Neil or invade his privacy. Although, long before Diamondville posted the news not only about the surgery, but the tour, you did have info on a possible tour. Now as any good journalist you cover yourself, but stating that it was unconfirmed and so on. So, you were not really being a rumor monger, just passing on info with a disclaimer.
> I do wish that Neil or his people were a little more forthcoming about things going on with Neil. His surgery at least to me and I hope many others was very important, my concerns for his health are high up on my list not the tour. I would rather see a healthy non touring Neil Diamond then a very sick or God forbid one who is no longer with us......
.....Quite frankly, I am glad I am somebody, but not his kind of somebody, it's seems to lonely to me. Big families, friends and lots of love when you need it or not.
Take care Joe.

Anita

Editor’s note: You make a number of interesting points. Please note though, that I said PERSONAL rumors. I have nothing against rumors regarding Neil’s MUSIC, (like new albums, tour dates, etc) as long as they come from a known reliable soure and are therefore likely to be accurate, and as long as the release of such info will not harm Neil in any way. Secondly, yes, you have a constitutional right to do it. You also have a constitutional right to be a bigot, but thats a BAD thing, so just that you have a RIGHT to do it, doesn’t mean you SHOULD do it. Thirdly, you say we shouldn’t print stuff that would ‘invade his privacy’. I agree. BUT I think that Neil would view ANY discussion of his personal life (besides what he announces to the world) as an invasion of his privacy, and THIS IS EXACTLY MY POINT, AND THE POINT OF MY POLICY.

Hi Joe,

I think your note on policy was most appropriate. Thanks for posting it. Some strange people out there. Looking forward to the tour! The Alabama fans will start in Nashville since it is a walk in the park for us to drive there.
Take Care Joe. I LOVE your Home Page it is the BEST.

Darleen S.

Editors note: Thanks for the support!

What a great page and a great tribute to a star who deserves it. I have been listening (and singing along with) Neil since vinyl records were it! Whenever I get a big case of the blues, his music always helps. The first song I learned to play on my guitar was 'Red, red wine'. I have personally been battling the big C for a couple of years and when it gets me down, I listen to Neil. Seems he's been a part of my life forever. Thanks for the page.

Carol

I have been a Neil Diamond fan forever. He is one of the most gifted and talent men of the century. His words and music are in my soul.To see Neil in concert is a sight not to be forgotten and once is not enough. Then after you hear and see this incredible entertainer that is so generous with his time and truly does care about his fan, you are spoiled for ever. I have seen him in concert twice. This last time was opening night at the MGM Grand Garden in Las Vegas last December. We were 12 rows from the stage(a miracle in its self) but were on the aisle that lead to and from back stage. That's right, he walked right by me onto the stage and then again when he left. I wanted to faint, it was so wonderful and I am not a teenager or young adult that goes to many concerts. But that is how I feel when this man is performing. Dancing and singing in my seat. I will continue to go to watch Neil perform till they put me in my grave or he stops performing, whichever comes first.
I could go on and on for days about Neil Diamond. Would love to talk to other fans.
My email is missdiamondfan@hotmail.com Just one more thing. I would love to see a Boxed CD set of all love songs done by Neil.
DiamondFan
AKA Lorraine Abrams

Please let Neil know that he is wanted in Winston-Salem NC. It's 30 miles from where I live. But I'll travel 100 miles to see him in concert. I haven't heard any rumours about Neil, all I know is, he's the greatest! His personal life should be his own, and we do care about his health, but that's as far as it should go. I have followed him since "Where The Action Is" was telecast back in 1966-67. I saw him in concert once in 1977, while pregnant with my daughter. And she's a Neil Fan also. After all while I carried her within me, Headphones across my abdomin, "before the medical ass. deemed it possible I might add", and his voice sang her to sleep late at night. And I can verifi that !
My husband used to go to "The Shower Of Stars" that WVOK in Birmingham Al. used to sponsor in the mid 60's. And he still acclaims that Neil is the best. And when girls were screaming and kept Neil from being heard Neil stopped and said, "Now girls, isn't that a bit childish?" Need I say more? His music has touched my husband's and "my life" for so many years. He's so incredibly talented. He always comes up with the feel and emotion that we're all going through, it's unbelieveable how he sees all the thoughts that are going through so many of us.
I just wish I could convey what he stirs within my soul. My one wish is to one day meet the man, and express what he means to all of us. I wish I, and (all his fans) could return just an ounce of the pure love and emotion he's shared with us.
Thank you for letting me share some of what THIS MAN has been to me. May he reign forever, as THE BEST IN ALL OF US. He is but mortal man, yet sees through legions of time.
Sincerely,
Patsy R. Buckner

Vol 21: July 27, 1997
Hello, I don't know if you have already made your watch but if you haven't and want an easy way to do this, Osco Drugstore's Photo Dept. can have one made for you. I don't know if this particular chain is available where you live, but if one store does it there are probably others out there as well. I think the CPI One Hour Photo places and Fox Photo also do this type of work. In any event, good luck on your venture.
Linda Whitaker

Hi Neil Diamond Fans,
I was so IMPRESSED to read all the wonderful things you all have to say about Neil.
I, too, am an ENORMOUS Neil Diamond fan. I have collected all but three of his albums, cassettes, singles and c/ds. I would like to hear from anyone who would like to communicate with me about Neil. I am in the process of trying to get to meet him on one of the talk shows, but have had NO success. Can anyone out there help me?? PLEASE??!! Please e-mail me at: diamond@si-net com. I am new at this Internet thing. Have only been online for a week. Be patient with me. Please write!!
Thanks a Diamond, Debbie Werner

Hello,
It seems that people are always looking for more. There isn't any one of us fans that don't have a very favorite song that always stirs the strings of our hearts. Yes, we could hear that song ad nauseum. As for me, Neil's songs have carried me through all the ups and downs of my life. The man is chock full of reality, feeling and hope. Neil's songs tough each cornerstone, each turn in the path and every situation. I can hear a song, and I can tell you what was going on in my life at that time. When I am down, I just put the cassettes in the truck, and let them rip.
By the way, my husband purchased the Readers Digest set of Neil Diamond tapes for me for Easter. Much better than an Easter egg in my basket! What a wonderful set of tapes. I am in heaven. The tapes of actual concerts, the noise, the whoops and hollers and the audience participation are just wonderful. Of course, anything Neil does is just wonderful.
Yes, I would like to see more of his earlier works in cassettes, for on-the-road listening. And I just love his new songs. The man never ceases to amaze me with the outpouring of talent. I should live to have 1/100 of his talent.

I`m his biggest fan from Brazil. My e-mail is diamond@vnet.com.br Please, write me back!
Thanks

Hi Joe,
I thought I would ask you about Neils message board, I been reading it for a couple of months now and was wondering if the Boss ever reads it himself? There are lots of messages on thier daily regarding Neil topics and some I find very interesting to read about.
I never knew how famous Neil was until I read his message board, he gets messages from all around the world. If I was to ever meet the man I would probably have an anxiety attack and drop to the ground! I would just hope that my kids would not be to witnessing it or they would really think there mom is losing it!
Thanks for your efforts in keeping this website available its the only reason I surf the web and of course to chatt with my friends.....and if you see Len "Neils cousin" tell him his work is much appreciated I'm sure he's tired of hearing about his famous cousin Neil.
Cheers,
Marie Alexandre

Hi! I'm 14 years old and I am just starting to like Neil Diamond. I got started liking him through the Monkees. I loved the songs he wrote for them so I bought some of his records. They also play him quite a bit on the radio here so I had heard Thank the Lord for the Nightime, Sweet Caroline, Cherry, Cherry, and others before and had liked those. I bought the Jazz Singer soundtrack, Gold, September Morn, and many others. My best friend (Michelle Lynde who also posted) told me about how good the Jazz Singer was so I rented it and watched it twice. It was a wonderful movie!
My all-time favorite song by his is Cracklin' Rosie. I listen to it all the time. I'm always looking for more Neil Diamond and Monkees stuff (The Monkees is my favorite band by the way) and I got two program things of him and a live concert video. It's a wonderful video I might add. Although I am 14, I only listen to oldies music. 90's music just doesn't do anything for me. I think that Neil Diamond is awesome and it's so cool how his songs and style are so timeless that he continues to gain new and younger fans. Keep up the good work Neil!
Brandy
http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/5145
janerainy@aol.com

Hello Joe,
My name is Shannon Duhon. And I am a fan club member, I just wanted to say a thank-you very much to Mr.Neil Diamond for all the years of great music that he has done on stage and on his disc. I have enjoyed all of his music very much through the years. I started listening to him when I was a freshman in high school,and I have been out of high school for over six years now. If people donot know that Neil is the best they should. If his fans, has any wonders about his music then they need to go out and buy a cd and listen to it. And then may be that will change there minds. Take care Neil. Just keep putting out the great music and I will keep buying it, please keep making the great music. I will be glad when I get to see you in concert for the first time. Take,care good luck on the years to come with your great music.
Your fan, Mr.Shannon Duhon of Vinton Louisiana

From: MITCH8ANET@aol.com Dear Sir:
I dont know if you are interested or not and not to toot my own horn but I have been told that I am the best Neil Diamond sound alike alive. I perform all over the NW area of the U.S. I cannot tell you what a pleasure it is to have the ability to emulate somone who to me is one of the finest performers and musical talents of our time!
Each time I perform I hear the audience singing and claping along with me both young and old alike. What a joy it is. If you would like to hear my talents I would be happy to send you a demo tape. Let me know. In any case just keep "hitchen on that twilight train" and enjoying life with Neil.
Thanks,
Mitch Miller
Well, with a name like Mitch Miller, I guess this guy SHOULD be in music!

Neil will always hold a special place in my heart. When I was 15, I won tickets to see him at the San Francisco Civic. He had me come up on stage and he sang "Cherry Cherry" to me. Now at age 41, I am the biggest Niel fan ever. My hopes are that one day I might be able to meet this wonderful man. Everytime he comes around in concert I go to see him at least twice.
Thanks,
Nancy Cole

Its been since 1972 when Neil was in Germany, I was away from home, "no fun", and Neil gave me the relief and fun to stick it out. I was in the Air Force, no money, no family only his songs to bring my spirits up!!! And he did, and he still does. When things get difficult, i.e. divorce etc., I turn up the music and get "into Neil". He has not let me down in 27 years, and now I have a great new lady in my life, she has never seen Neil in concert , so I cannot wait to take he to one, I have been to 7. She is a big fan , but never had the chance to see the master in action. I hope the opportunity comes soon. He is the best!!!!
Take care,
Ray from Buffalo NY

Vol 20: July 13, 1997
Hi,
I've been through the Neil info and I'm wondering if there's a chat room available.
I actually got to meet and shake hands with him after a show. He was going into his hotel and had already reached the door and I just stuck my hand out and he came back and shook it.
I didn't want to wash my hands ever again. (I did, of course, but it was hard!) I sent him flowers and a note telling him how much it meant to me when he actually came back from the door to shake my hand. I received a thank you note from him ( his staff actually) - thought I'd die when I saw the frog with a crown on the envelope. One of the best days of my life!

From: LScott5990@aol.com
I have been a fan of Neil Diamond's since the early 60's. I will never forget the night I first saw Neil in person. It was in a well known eating and bar restrauant called " The Brickyard" in Ft. Lauderdale , Fl. It was amature night and when the music started, all you heard was the performer on the left side of the stage. This person was a dead ringer for Neil Diamond in both looks and voice . After this person sang a couple of songs, the lights came on and from the right side of the stage Neil came out singing Red Red Wine. It was the most entertaining evening that I had ever had up to that time. Then Neil and the impersonator traded lines from his song Shilo.

My son and I wern't communicating well when he left home to set up his own apartment. For my birthday in July several months later, he gave me the then n ew cassette of "Hot August Night" and told me to listen particularly to the song "Morningside" about the old man who built a table that his children didn't appreciate. I did so, and almost cried. Just before that cassette came out my son had borrowed a table I had made, a few years prior, to use in his new apartment. Ever since that day my son and I have been Neil Diamond fanatics, and I have become much closer to my son and his family. I understood, by his telling me that he really cared about me through Neil's song, that sometimes feelings need to be expressed in such ways that arguments and emotions can't get into the way of clear thinking. We communicate much better now, and my son and I now always close our conversations by telling each other "I love you (Dad/Son)".
Thank you, Neil
Ron Moore

From: BOBBY J BARR |
I have some interesting information for you and was wondering if you could answer a few questions for me. The following songs were written by Neil Diamond but never recorded by him.
1. Santa, Santa (45) Rocky Fellers Scepter 1245
2. We Got Love (Killer Joe LP) Rocky Fellers Scepter 512
3. Just Another Guy (45) Cliff Richards EMI DB7496
4. Sunday And Me (45) Jay & The Americans UA UA-948
5. A Little Bit Me (45) Monkees Colgems 66-1004
6. Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow) (2nd LP) Monkees Colgems COS-102
7. My Babe (45) Ronnie Dove Diamond D-221
8. Put My Mind At Ease (45) Ronnie Dove Diamond D-221
9. Back From Baltimore (45) Ronnie Dove Diamond D-233
10. The Boy With Green Eyes (45) Angels RCA 47-9612
11. Sunflower (45) Glen Campbell Captiol 4445
12. I Seek The Night (Every Which Way But Loose Sound track) Sandra Locke Elektra 5E-503
My questions are:
1. Is there any other songs written by Neil but not recorded by him and recorded by some one else, if so please send me a list my e-mail address is barrb@okstate.edu.
2. Do you have the words to those songs requested in question 1 above and the words to Santa, Santa, We Got Love, Just Another Guy and The Boy With Green Eyes.
Information about myself:
I'm over thirty, male, and have been a Neil Diamond fan since I first heard Solitary Man which has since become my theme song. If you have other questions you would like to ask E-mail me at the above address.

I have been a fan since the late 60`s. However, I came to Germany in the early 70`s and have been here since.Over the years I have been able to get in a few concerts; 2 at home in England and 2 here in Germany. The problem is we don`t get to hear very much about ND in Germany. I would love to get hold of some TV shows or interviews. If anyone knows where I could get video tapes from I would be very glad. It does not matter which system has been used to record a I have a multisystem VCR. Any news of German visits by ND would be much appreciated.
Mary Moyles-Johnson
eMail:09101 7348-0001@T-online.de

Hi,
I saw your message on Joe Imhof's board about the songs that haven't been released on CD. Wow! I didn't know all those UNI ones were not the same mixes I heard on the radio all those years.
I was aware of some Bang label differences, especially for "Solitary Man". I was indeed aware that the version on "Classics" was a different mix and was glad to have the original on "In My Lifetime". Also, the version of "You Got to Me" on the 1966-92 CD set is also quite different from the hit version, but the hit version is what's on "In My Lifetime". I also take issue with the inclusion of the lesser-known "Shilo" version, but at least I have the hit version on "Classics" and, I believe, "1966-92" (which I don't play that much, so I don't remember).
Anyway, I have come across a CD put out by Duchesse in some European country. Catalog number CD 352017. It's called "Neil Diamond First Hits". It has 16 songs, 5 of which I've never seen on CD before:
"Love to Love"
"Hanky Panky"
"I'll Come Running"
"Crooked Street"
"New Orleans"
The other songs are all readily available on CD - in fact, all of them are on "In My Lifetime" and "Classics" in one form or another. (They can be easily summed up as "everything that's on 'Classics' except 'Do It'.) The hit version of "Shilo" is included.
Most of the stuff is in good shape to my not-so-fussy ears. However, the versions of "I'll Come Running" and "New Orleans" are worse-sounding than those on my "Double Gold" vinyl LP.
I don't know where to find this CD. I picked up a copy at a store called Main Street Music in Philadelphia this past March 17, but it was the only copy they had in stock. This store had other CDs of hit collections from this label by other artists, including the Doors. The date on it is 1989, so it has probably been out for awhile. But this could also mean that it's out of print.
Good luck in finding this. I also support your other CD ideas. I have a cross-labels rarities disk in mind that would include:
1. The stuff on Bang that hasn't been on CD before, especially B-side "The Time is Now", which has never been on ANY album that I know of.
2. "Broad Old Woman" and the single version of "Holiday Inn Blues" (B-side of "Brooklyn Roads", which sounds like it has been slowed down on the "Velvet Gloves and Spit" album).
3. "You Don't Know Me", B-side of "Heart Light", which has never been on any album. 4. Neil's Coca Cola ads, which have been released on a CD of various artists doing Coke ads, so they should be available for licensing.
5. The flip side of the Neil and Jack song that appeared on "In My Lifetime", as well as both sides of the other Neil and Jack single.
6. A song called "I've Never Been the Same", which I learned about less than two weeks ago that was released on the "Chartbusters" album you mention. I hadn't heard of this album before, either.
7. Other demos, alternate versions, and unreleased stuff such as the ones that were on "In My Lifetime".

I am trying to make a Neil Diamond watch. Does anyone have any ideas as to how to get a good picture of Neil small enough to fit in the face of a man's-size watch? I want the picture to be the pose he does at the end of the song "America" from the Jazz Singer.
Contact: SueHill7740@aol.com

Vol 19: June 7, 1997
Hey:
I work in somewhat of a remote dusty town on the Thailand Burma border in the very north of Thailand and I run a school for tribal kids. Resources don't add up to much and I try to do the best for these kids as I can. I was wondering if out there in the Neil Diamond fan club, people have old cassettes (everyone switching to CD's now) that they would be willing to donate such that these kids can get something more than Thai Bop. Was good enough for me, maybe Neil Diamond would be a sponsor for the NEIL DIAMOND GOES TRIBAL celebration.

Anyway, if there are any of you who would like to send us a few tapes, it doesn't matter how scratchy there are, we'd love you for it. Address and email below.

Sincerely,

Matthew McDaniel
The Akha Heritage Foundation
Akha University - Maesai
397/1 Sailom Joi Rd.
Maesai, Chiangrai, Thailand 57130
Ph: 66-53-640-588
Fax: 66-53-733-332
Try the other line in case one is down temporarily ph or fax
E-mail: akha@loxinfo.co.th
Web Site: http://www.thailine.com/akha/

Hi:
I have read much of the letters to the editor and found them quite interesting. Yes we are NEIL DIAMOND fans. Have been since the early seventies. We have quite a collection of his records, tapes & discs. We have been to every concert he has put on in Vancouver since the early seventies. Every concert has been supberb and as the years go by, they get better & better.

His last concert in Vancouver was July/96 and he was in full swing and had the place rocking from the time he came on stage til he went off, needless to say, 4 encores to follow. His songs are unbeleivable, wether from the sixties until now. Some fans only like the old versions and yes we like them also, but also like them jazzed up or more pizzazz to them. He can write & sing love songs, pop songs, country songs & of course, symphony. Yes, symphony, for the fans that only know Jonathon Livingston Seagull as a 30 min. song, try the album or disc. NEIL wrote all the music for it it is a beautiful record. I would like to see the movie so that I can appreciate this special record.

Yes, he also a hunk, around my age but I am married & he is not, as if he would give me the time of day. We are eagerly waiting for another concert but every 2 years is good, gives him time to write some new songs but we certainly love all his songs!!!!!!!!!!!!

HEY CANADIAN NEIL DIAMOND FANS, send your comments, let every one know we are out there.

I reviewed some letters and a lot of critism re: Neil. Either you are a fan or your not. Yes, some of his songs are not the best. but they are all good and most are fantastic!!!!!!!! Re: the person who doesn't like September Morn, listen to the words, they mean a lot. All his songs have meaning, My Husband and myself relarte to a lot of his songs & my daughters, who grew up listening to him since they were babies loves his concerts & his songs. I hope next time I read these letters, some Canadians will have written. I know you are out there!!!!!

Diamondly Yours Ron & Marilyn N. Delta, B.C. Editiors note: Geez, a lot of folk are upset by the person who didn’t like September Morn. I agree that its a great song, used to be a favorite. I think that perhaps we have all heard it in concert too many times and have become a little “jaded” by it?

Dear Joe
I have loved the voice and music of Neil Diamond since I was 10 years of age. My aunt had the 'Beautiful Noise ' album. As soon as I heard Neil's voice I became a fan forever more.

I saw Neil in Newcastle Arena England last year, he was excellent. I wept with envy at this beautifully tallented man. He compacted many numbers in just 2 hours. His voice was just as good as he sounds on CD.

Personnally I have never heard any other performer who matches Neil in my life so far. I have heard his Tennesse Moon album, verdict EXCELLENT. I feel Neil is entering a new era in his life. If I could say something if I may, I do think that we still have not yet seen the full potential of Neil. In his concert I did feel maybe he could have added a couple of ballads sang on piano, such as 'Lady Magdelane', 'Lady Oh', 'Be'' but then he can't think of everything can he.

I hope Neil manages to do everything he wishes in life, he is blessed with an excellent band and orchestra and a magnificent team of helpers backing him. I wish you well Neil .

He also has an extremely talented son, and other kids who are also tallented. Take care Neil. Hope to see you back in England, maybe even Scotland possibly.

ANN MUIRHEAD
Devoted Fan.
Editors note: Lady Magdelene, Be, Lady Oh, yeah, that would be great to hear him sing, instead of only the hits......well, we can dream.......

To Mr. Imhof, I am a 13yr old girl from Australia who thinks (or should I say knows) that Neil Diamond is an absolute legend!! My friends think I'm crazy for liking Neil's music but I can't help it. He is just too good! Keep up the good work with the ND page, I always consult it when I need to and if you have the time e-mail me on cnitsos@hyperion.strathcona.vic.edu.au

Any one who wants to exchange info on Neil can e-mail me as well. Good Luck in the future!
Cindy Nitsos - Melbourne, Australia.

Dear Mr Imhof,
I am a longtime fan of Neil Diamond. I saw the "Jazz Singer" and loved it alot. For me to finally see a Concert,in San Diego on 8/17/96, was with great happiness. My sister-in-law & I saw up in the top rows but we had binoculars to see Neil. We clapped, sang, cheered, whistled like teenage girls (both us were 37 yrs old married women with kids) That night shall be in my memory as just the best.

I saw Neil on Rosie O'Donnell's Show on 12/11/97. It was so neat. I just thought how special to be singing with him. I had to get the Neil Bear & the In My Lifetime CD. Plus I have one personally autographed pix of him-several years ago. Also a keychain from the Tennesse Moon Tour-1996.

So I just am glad to see a message board for all of the fans.
Sue

Hi! I am fifteen years old, and I LOVE Neil Diamond. the Monkees are primarily responsible for this. I LOVE the Monkees, and when I first liked them, I learned that Neil Diamond wrote for them. By an obscure (and I mean OBSCURE) coincedence, my aunt had just given me a ton of records, and almost all of them were Neil Diamond. I have since then, obtained EVERY SINGLE Neil Diamond record that I can possibly find. I'm talking LOTS. More than half of my record collection (which is pretty extensive, if I do say so myself..:)) is Neil Diamond.

I think I'm a Believer is a wonderful song (whether it's the Monkees or Neil singing it) and I LOVE September Morn! How could ANYONE hate that beautiful song?

Anyway, I just wanted to say that there are still teenagers out here who like music with taste. I think it's sad to see so many people my age liking the music that they do, with body-piercings and curse words, or whatever.. Neil Diamond, the Monkees, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, that's REAL music! Michelle Lynde (a Monkees and Neil fan) Euless, Texas diggy2@juno.com http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/9667
Editors note: uh, you don’t like body piercing??????

Hi,
I have been playing guitar for almost 20 years, I am also a songwriter, I have always wanted to thank all of the artists who have inspired me, Neil Diamond is one of those. I play many of his songs and my favorite one to play and sing is "Solitary Man," the next is "Song Sung Blue" and you know "it's a funny thing, you can sing it with a cry in your voice and before you know it starts to feelin' good, you simply got no choice." Thank you Neil.

Jess Lunsford

This is just a thought.......I was wondering if any one would be interested in an annual gathering at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles. The date can be determined later (i.e. January 24, some day/night in August?) Since Chicago has an annual birthday party, why can't one of his home towns have an annual gathering!!!!

John Ryan
Ventura, CA
email: ozwizard@pacbell.net

Vol 18: May 25, 1997
I have just browsed the letters on the Home Page regarding Neil and I just have to add my thoughts. I have admired him immensely since highschool (1969 through now). There isn't a performer I would pay money to see like I would and have done for him. As I always tell everyone, you always get everypenny worth and more no matter how much they charge. Considering the range of his talent (not to mention the Band's), his ticket prices are bargains compared to some of the other "entertainment" out there.

Whenever he comes to town, I go to ALL shows. He usually performs 3 shows in Minneapolis and even has performed up to 4 as I recall, and I will buy tickets for all of them. Usually one night it's a bunch of us going and the subsequent nights it's just me. I used to feel that because of his age (this was 10 years ago or so) I needed to see every show because you just never knew when he would quit. Now after having seen him last summer 3 times (twice in Minneapolis and once in Milwaukee - I now consider myself a "groupie!), I don't think of him as quitting anymore due to his age. I just wonder when he will be coming again. Now that I'm as old as he was when I worried 10 years ago about his retiring, I wonder how long I will be able to attend his shows!!!

The shows in 1996 were incredible. I LOVED the Tennessee Moon album although a lot of people seemed to be disappointed in the "country" flavor of it. My feelings about Neil's music has been THE LYRICS. If one just listens to the words coming through, no one can criticize what he is creating. I felt Tennessee Moon was written and created while he was probably going through his marriage problems with Marcia and the words show the anguish and pain he must have felt. Listen to the words -- especially the one about taking the chains and setting him free (the actual title escapes me right now). His words are so important and then to see and hear him perform them -- it's indescribable!!

Thanks to all who have worked so hard bringing this talent out and keep on doing whatever you're doing (Neil) to keep going -- You're the greatest!!!

Dear Mr. Imhof,

I would like to thank you so much for letting me be a part of the whole Diamond experience! My friends think I'm crazy because I love Neil's music--I'm eighteen years old and a college student. Putting all this stuff on the internet gives me, and other fans, the opportunity to seek out more info on the legend. Especially without others knowing about it.--Don't get me wrong-I'm not trying to hide my admiration for him, but my roommates get the feeling that they still live with their parents sometimes when I constantly crank up my cd's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! if you get concert dates, or anything else of Neil-importance, e-mail me(if you have time!!!!!!!) at either sgorham@alan.coastal.edu or tfgjmg@worldnet.att.net. At any rate, I'll keep on checking the home page for more info periodically.

Thanks again,
Shannon Gorham
Coastal Carolina University
South Carolina

I was thrilled to find you on the web site. I am a vey big fan of Neil's forever. I came from the same area as he did in Brooklyn, NY (which was Brighton Beach), even went to the same high school, (Lincoln High on Ocean Parkway). My mom knew his parents, even shopped at his dad's clothing store while I played outside, and looked at the pictures his dad had posted of Neil on the store window, I thought he was out of sight then. Any new information about Neil would be greatly appreciated, just e-mail me as soon as you can. Thank you, I remain a Fan Forever,

JMLRW,Selden, Ny

Dear Joe, Great job!! Keep up the good work!!

Yes, this is yet another letter from one of the "biggest" fans of Neil. My husband and I have only seen him in concert once, (in Boston) but it truly was the night of our lives! It was one of those getaway weekends when everything just comes together perfectly(which doesn't happen too often for couples with children)! We purchased the tickets for the concert in March and put them away in a very safe place until the big day in June. I had been so excited about this weekend for so long, I could only hope that things would go off as planned. It's very rare for something to actually be as good as it is imagined. This concert was the exception to that rule, though. It was better than one could ever imagine! My only problem was that as soon as I heard the very first note of "Hello Again", ("our song" since we first heard it) I began to cry and couldn't even see him perform it!

We're always anxious to hear news of Neil! This is a great place to "get the scoop"!

Thanks again,
Trish

Hello Joe,

Perhaps you can help me. I am doing research into drummer Hal Blaine, who played on quite a few Neil Diamond sessions. Do you know where or how I can obtain a more complete list?

Hmmmmmmm "more complete' than what? Okay, how about a complete list of every thing Hal Blaine played on with Neil Diamond.

Doable???

Thanks,
Einar E. Kvaran
From: einar

Vol 17: May 17, 1997
Though I have visited your page many times I have never felt compeled to write. I was recently visiting the Letters page and wanted to respond to a letter that was written in March. You see, I am 25 years old and have been a Neil fan all my life. I have been to 8 concerts and own 32 CD's and Tapes. I was a bit disturbed because in the letter written in March the author considered herself Neil's biggest fan. Yet in the letter she wrote of her liking for Neil's earlier hits and that some of his later music was of lesser quality. She also wrote that she "hated" September Morn. My question is, how can you be Neil's biggest fan and hate some of his music?

Of course, I consider myself Neil Diamond's biggest fan, and yet I know that he has millions of "biggest" fans. That's what makes him a great musician. The fact is that I love all of Neil's work and think that it has become fashionable to refer to his 80's and 90's music as "fluff". In reality Neil has produced great music throughout his career, including September Morn! When you get a chance listen to September Morn or Love on the Rocks (or any other song) again. I mean really listen. Then let the lyrics and the power of the music tell its story. Nobody delivers a lyric like Neil, and the music he writes is powerful and passionate.

Thanks to all who contribute to this page. I have really enjoyed it! I hope that Neil announces a tour soon and I'm sure that Joe will be the first to publish the dates and ticket infromation.

Sincerely,
Gino
Keene State College
Keene New Hampshire

HELLO NEIL DIAMOND FANS!

I'VE BEEN A HUGE FAN OF NEIL'S FOR SEVERAL YEARS. I'VE BEEN LUCKY ENOUGH TO SEE HIM TWICE IN CONCERT. HE PUTS ON A HELL OF A SHOW. I'M ONLY SORRY THAT I MISSED THE {Syracuse} SHOW. I AM SADDENED TO HEAR THAT HE MIGHT NOT HAVE A 1997 TOUR. I HOPE THAT CHANGES.

I LOVE HIS MUSIC. I'VE SEEN HOM ON DIFFERENT LATE NIGHT SHOWS SUCH AS THE TONIGHT SHOW AND I THINK HE IS THE MOST GENTLE AND PASSIONATE MAN I HAVE EVER LISTENED TO. HE IS JUST WONDERFUL!

HOLLY S.



I have been a huge Neil Diamond fan since 1976 when I obtained his "Stones" album and began listening to it. Looking back, I honestly believe that the songs "Stones", and "I Am...I Said" changed my life in a very constructive way. The beautiful, poetic lyrics told me as a lonely, confused 16 year old, that I was not alone and they somehow inspired me to deal with my teenage years in a positive way.

I think all of us who have understood and loved his music will always be grateful to him as we would be to any gift giver. I know a lot of people let their jealousy get the best of them and find things to criticize (like his stage clothes), but us fans just appreciate the piece of his soul that he was willing to share with the whole world. Neil, if you should ever read this, I just want to say "thank you". Thank you for I Am... I Said, Stones, Jonathan..., Songs of Life, Story of My Life, Cherry, Cherry, Yesterday's Songs, Dry Your Eyes, Heaven Can Wait and all your other "Beautiful Noise."

Natalie de la Cruz
Salt Lake City, Utah



It is truely interesting to read all of the letters regarding seeing Neil in concert. I myself, have seen him several times (usually once each tour, starting with the Aladdin Vegas Show).

Now I am also: "The Biggest Neil Diamond Fan in the World" (gee imagine that). But for what seems to be a different reason than what I see in most of these letters. I LOVE the MUSIC. First and foremost. I enjoy seeing him in concert, and he does put on a great show, but it is the "original recordings" that made me a fan. I felt I was on top of the world after I paid $35 for a copy of "Clown Town/At Night", I still cherish my "Chartbusters" album, as well as all the Bang ablums (and singles. Yes, I have all the multipule copies of his singles with different B-sides). I have been a fan since "Sunday Sun" hit the radio (for a short time) in '68 and began to buy his earlier Bang material (still the best era, followed closely by the UNI area).

I have had a love/hate relationship with Columbia & MCA for years. Granted Columbia has released all Neil's post '73 albums and CD, MCA has put out all of his UNI albums on CD (although the quality on some, i.e. 'Velvet Gloves & Spit' are pretty bad). Still they provide and unscratched/pop-free listing experience. Columbia's first attempt at a 'box set' (2-CD) was worth the purchase price if ONLY for the opportunity to get the ORIGINAL VERSION of 'Solitary Man', not the bastardized remix found on "CLassics" as well as re-released vinyl versions. And what helps the Columbia offering was the MCA entry "Glory Road". This was truely an excellent collection.

When I first heard of the real 'box' set to be released "In My Lifetime" I was worried. Columbia has always found a way to screw up Neil's releases, especially his Bang material. I was of coarse hoping for at least a standard 4-disc set (come-on guys, there surely was no lack of material, and the prospect of a "In My Lifetime Vol. 2" is extremely unlikely. At least in MY lifetime. I felt he was a good opportunity to release the rest of the Bang material. (heck, if they were worried that with that much older material, that buyers may get put off, they could have included it a a 'Bonus Disc" (a la box sets from the Beach Boys, Moody Blues). It surely could be a copyright issues. Neil owns them all.

Well after listening to the 3-disc collection, I can say that is a very good set. My main complant is that they did not use the version of 'Shilo' that was used for airplay, and hence the one more people are used to, and by the way, in my opinion, clearly a superior version than the one used.

I feel that at this point with the music industry releasing every sneeze by the Beatles (which I actually appreciate 'cuase I love them Be-at-tles), complete catalogues by Elvis, the Beach Boy, and countless other acts, there is still two Neil Diamond releases REQUIRED.

Number One: The COMPLETE Bang recordings And to not miss anything I would pay happily for a 2-disc set that even includes the remixed versions of Solitary Man, Cherry Cherry, You Got to Me, Shilo, I'm a Beliver, etc. I am not asking for unreleased material (although if the there is more from this area I would love it), but I'm just asking for clean CD versions for the material that was released (but no longer availble) on LPs (Great songs as, "I'll Come Running, You'll Forget, the original version of Do It, Someday Baby, Love to Love, Red Rubber Ball, Monday, Monday (great cover version), and even Hanky Panky)

Number Two: The UNI Singles Some of the best Neil Diamond Songs ('Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show' ranks number one in this catagory) has not been released on CD in the original single form. Song such as BLTSS, Sunday Sun, Holly Holy, Two-But Manchild, I Am I Said, were remixed (or re-recorded) for the album and these songs were changed, some more radically (Brother Love's) than others. However the point is that the version that was played on the radio, the version that got people to buy the albums, the version that made the song a hit, IS NOT AVAILABLE!!! As a side note, I know of one song, the amusing "Broad Old Woman-6:00am Insanity" where you can here Neil swear beacuse of frustration, that should be added to this collection.

Well this is my wish.

At least I kept all of my vinyl. By the way, If anyone knows of an inport CD that covers any stu material not found on US domestic releases, I am interested.

Be Seeing You/SBG
sgbogdanff@ccgate.hac.com

Vol 16: April 26, 1997
Wow,, what can I say? With all the accolades expressed by my fellow Neil fans,, there isn't much I can add except my own personal perspective.

I was so very fortunate to have been raised in a musical environment in the late sixties and early seventies. My father was very serious about music and always was current in the latest sounds. In the early seventies, my father began managing 'copy' bands in South Texas area, and the den of our house became a small studio. Many weekdays went by with me falling to sleep to the sound of the band practicing to The Hollies, Buddy Miles, Doobies, and of course, Neil Diamond. Because the instruments were always stored at our home, I soon became curious about playing the drums, and started plunking around after school. Lucky for me, I had a natural knack for drumming, and took to it like a fish to water. By the time I was nine,, I was playing in clubs with a band member doing duets. (No school nights of course!)

The reason I bring any of that up is because some of my fondest, most powerful memories of my youth are while playing the drums to Hot August Night time and time again. Even in the 'duet' situation I was in with the guitar player,, we played Cherry, Cherry, B.L. Traveling Salvation Show, amongst others live in small shows. To be a kid up in front of an audience was great. What a fortunate person I am to have been raised on such powerful and wonderful music.

Today,, as I listen to my Neil Diamond CDs,, I get a twofold sense of feelings. First,, I am taken back to the early seventies, and the sound of "I Am, I Said" echoing through the house day after day, remembering the long afternoons practicing drums. I get misty eyed at such deep meaningful songs such as "Morningside". But today,, now that I am reaching my mid thirties, I am awed at just how darned good Neil was in his younger years. Not saying he isn't great today, but the writing, and voice of Neil in the late sixties and early seventies was so far ahead of his peers. (Hey, that was protest time, remember? Make love not war - haha) All this I say with a great deal of gratitude and respect for the guy who was doing it well then and is still kickin' butt today.

I had the honor of attending a Neil Diamond show with my father not too long ago. (and boy was my dad happy to see Ronny Tut on those drums, after not seeing him since the Elvis days) Seeing Neil up on the stage, still as powerful as the character on the cover of "Hot August Night", inspired me to be all that I can be in my life, today, and later in my life. What a musician, what a man. Thanks Neil for sharing your gifts with my father and I for all these years.

A life long Fan,
Bobby Boykin



I thought you might get a kick out of this totally confirmable Neil Diamond story. On December 14,1993 I was in Wichita,KS. Upon leaving for Kansa City about ten thirty am, I stopped into sheplers country western clothing store. Of all people for me to run into, I literally ran into Neil Diamond himself browsing through racks of shirts and jeans and the like. Neil was in town for a concert the previous evening and stopped with his band to shop on their way out of town.

( If this sounds staged or made up call the store in wichita to confirm.) Neil was as down to earth as anyone I have ever met in my life. He signed autographs for the staff as well as anyone else who just by chance happened to be lucky enough to be there. He truly was as nice as could be and was willing to talk to anyone about anything. I have all Neil's material and have been a huge fan for 25 years.

The fact that I had this once in a lifetime chance to meet and visit with him is still to this quite unbelievable to me. I will always remember my special few minutes with him. He wrote to me 'Happy X-mas Neil Diamond 12/14/93'
Denny, Kansas City

Vol 15: March 2, 1997
Subject: Neil of course
Hi Joe. What a great thing you've got going here. As all the others who write to you, I too am Neil's biggest fan. I've been in love with him since I was ten years old and was convinced I wanted to marry him. Now I'm thirty, and he's actually divorced, but now I'm married. I've seen him in concert ten times over the past sixteen years at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, the Oakland Coliseum Arena, the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View near San Jose, the San Jose Arena, Lawlor Events Center in Reno, and Arco Arena here where I live in Sacramento.
What a show he puts on. I have to admit I wish he'd vary the banter from night to night, but, of course, overall he's got a super show. I remember sobbing my head off, unable to look up with my head buried in my sister's lap, the first time I saw him in concert. It was just too much for me to handle, since I'd listened to his music for hours at a time every single day for five years or so at that point. I just couldn't believe he could be a real person, actually in the same building with me!
Anyway, I am much more into his late sixties and early seventies stuff (up to and including Beautiful Noise) than I am all that came afterward. That's not to say some of the stuff that came in the later seventies, the eighties and now the nineties isn't good. There are songs here and there on all albums (except for September Morn, which I hate) that I enjoy. The other thing about my favorite time period is that he is such a stallion! Nothing is more beautiful than Neil in his early thirties with that fabulous long hair. Now I know everyone won't agree with me, but that's my opinion. I'd pay every cent I've ever spent on any entertainment in my life to have seen one of those early seventies concerts, or his show at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas in 1976. Have been to Las Vegas in recent years and stay at the Aladdin just to try to capture something long gone. I was surprised to hear he'd been at the new MGM this past December. Anyway, those are just some random thoughts I wanted to add to your letters section. Thanks for letting me express them.

Jennifer Corkery
Sacramento, CA


Sometime back in the 60's Neil Diamond wrote a song called,SUNDAY AND ME and Jay and the Americans recorded it. My then boyfriend and I were so taken with the name that we decided to name a daughter that if we ever had one. Low and behold, we had three and our middle daughter, now 21, is named Sunday Eileen.
We have long had a copy of the recording and player it for her frequently. A few years ago her father, we are now divorced and he was living in Cleveland, took her to see Jay and the Americans in concert and they announced that they don't often sing the song in concert, but they felt like doing it that night. What a thrill for the Sunday in the audience.
Thought that you might be interested in that little bit of information....she always gets asked if she was born on Sunday and she says, "No, I am named after a Neil Diamond song." Proud of her name and it suits her so well.

Fran Walker
Rkymtwoman@aol.com


Hello:

Fans of Neil Diamond, please if some of you has information on the life of Neil, that is to say History, songs, films. Please to send me a E-mail with the material or where I can find it.
It is that in Spain not with himself to find nothing, alone in some of their/its/your/his disks puts something but very little.
Thanks.

Xavier Ruiz.
ruizpex@arrakis.es


Hi there,

I got introduced to Neil way back in the late-60's when I was at college in the U.S. as a foreign student.
That's almost 25 years ago now but Neil's music still plays in this household and I've got my wife and 2 boys (15 & 13) hooked on too.
Solitary Man is still my favorite. My sons repeat this for me and put the volume louder when I have to take a shower. Of course this does'nt happen everyday but when it does, it's like a present from the kids to me.
To lovers of music (and I'm not only into American/English music), Neil stands out.

All the very best.


I WAS VERY GLAD TO SEE SOME MUCH INFORMATION ON NEIL DIAMOND. IF HAVE BEEN A FAN OF NEILS FOR MORE YEARS THAN I CARE TO COUNT. I AM FROM MICHIGAN AND SAW NEIL AT PINE KNOB FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE EARLY 70'S I HAVE BEEN A DIED IN THE WOOL FAN EVER SINCE MISSING ONLY ONE OF HIS CONCERTS HERE IN ALL THESE YEARS. (THATS BECAUSE I WAS OUT OF TOWN) LAST YEAR WE WENT TO SEE HIM A THE PALACE AND HAD THE BEST SEATS EVER. HE IS THE ULTIMATE PERFORMER PLAYING FOR HIS AUDIENCE NOT TO HIS AUDIENCE. JUST WANTED TO LET YOU KNOW THERE ARE SOME OF US OLD TIMERS OUT THERE.

KATHY HENDRICKSON
CLINTON TWP, MICHIGAN


Dear Diamond Heads,

I have been a fan of Neil Diamond since ON THE WAY TO THE SKY, even though my first hook came from HOT AUGUST NIGHT. I have attended over 36 concerts from 1980 to present time. Even though Neil puts on the best concerts I have ever seen by any performer, and I have seen them all from Elvis to Elton John and the list keeps going on. But I do have to say that todays Neil Diamond concerts do not match up to his early 1980s shows. Yet I have seen this tour 7 times. He use to put on a 3 1/2 hour show with 4 to 5 encores where he would leave the stage and keep us wanting more.
Plus he doesn't do JONATHAN LIVINGSTON SEAGULL any more. I remember when he used to do the whole segment- about 30 minutes. It was the highlight of the show.
I dont mean to complain because I love the man, and will see him till the day that I die, then I will still listen to him ON THE WAY TO THE SKY.

DIAMOND HEAD FOREVER,
Kays Baba

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