Lotta Love

Album: Nicolette (1978)
Charted: 8
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  • This soft-rock favorite has a writer you wouldn't expect. "Lotta Love" was written by Neil Young and recorded by Nicolette Larson, becoming her first charting single. Larson got her career jump as a backing singer for Neil Young on the albums American Stars 'n Bars (1977) and Comes a Time (1978), so this is how he came to write for her.
  • "Lotta Love" is the first track of what would prove to be a stellar album. Nicolette reached #15 on the US Album charts and was certified gold in the US and Canada. In addition, Rolling Stone declared her Female Vocalist of 1978 on the strength of this album, despite its being released in September of that year.

    Despite her continued work and albums released until 1994, she was never again to see this kind of success. Her only other appearance on the Billboard Top 40 charts is at #35 for her 1980 "Let Me Go, Love," a duet with Michael McDonald. However, she had many more charting singles on the Adult Contemporary and US Country charts - the country hits starting in the mid-1980s when she switched her genre to pure country.
  • How Nicolette met Neil: She had already been working as a recording artist, first on the 1975 Commander Cody album Tales From the Ozone (Commander Cody was best known for 1972's "Hot Rod Lincoln"), then eventually with Emmylou Harris, which led to her meeting Harris' associate and friend Linda Ronstadt. Larson visited Ronstadt's Malibu home when neighbor Neil Young dropped by looking for a new female vocalist. Neil and Larson had their first jam session that day and he was thrilled. Together Larson and Ronstadt became "The Saddlebags," credited as such on Young's album.

    "Lotta Love" also got released on Young's own album Comes a Time - track 4, side 1. This is one of the albums with the band Crazy Horse serving back-up duties, including on "Lotta Love." In case you hadn't figured it out by now, Young and Larson also had a brief affair during this time. And after they had split, who should be the very next woman for Young to get involved with but a waitress named Pegi working at the Bella Vista Restaurant, Pegi being the woman he would marry for good.
  • There's some controversy over exactly how Larson got this song. Linda Rodstadt claims it resulted from her suggestion to Larson. Larson, however, says that the suggestion came from Young himself. "I got that song off a tape I found lying on the floor of Neil's car," Larson said. "I popped it in the tape player and commented on what a great song it was. Neil said: 'You want it? It's yours.'"
  • Larson passed away on December 16, 1997. On February 21 and 22 of 1998, a tribute concert named the Lotta Love Concert was held in her honor. Performers included Dan Fogelberg, Joe Walsh, Jackson Browne, Emmylou Harris, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jimmy Buffet, Carole King, Linda Ronstadt, and Little Feat with Bonnie Raitt. Young did not attend, but according to the liner notes for the album cut from the concert, he sent "a bouquet of roses as big as the audience."

Comments: 5

  • Layne Newman from Dallas,txI first heard this song in 1979 in Hawaii. It was beautiful then and beautiful now.
  • Markantney from BiloxeAug 18, I barely remember(ed) the song coming up but luckily caught it in the late 90s (again). A perfect song for her voice (RIP). Another song I believe should've made it to #1 that didn't. "Drive" by the Cars is another that comes to mind.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 11th 1979, "Lotta Love" by Nicolette Larson peaked at #8 (for 2 weeks) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it had entered the chart on November 19th at position #86 and spent 19 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on January 28th, 1979 it reached #1 (for 1 week) on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Tracks chart (also was #1 on the Canadian Adult Contemporary chart)...
    R.I.P. Ms. Larson (1952 - 1997).
  • Esskayess from Dallas, TxA couple of years before she died, she recorded a beautiful collection of lullabyes for her little girl ('Sleep, Baby, Sleep'), which can still be found online.
  • Brad from Hickory, Nc...from Wiki...Larson's work with Emmylou Harris — the album Luxury Liner (1977) prominently showcased Larson on the cut "Hello Stranger" — led to her meeting Harris' associate and friend Linda Ronstadt who became friends with Larson. In the spring of 1977 Larson was at Ronstadt's Malibu home when neighbor Neil Young phoned to ask Ronstadt if she could recommend a female vocal accompanist, and Ronstadt suggested Larson, becoming the fifth person that day to put Larson's name forward to Young. Young came over to meet Larson who recalled: "Neil ran down all the songs he had just written, about twenty of them. We sang harmonies with him and he was jazzed."[3]
    Larson died on December 16, 1997 in Los Angeles as a result of complications arising from cerebral edema triggered by liver failure. According to her friend Astrid Young, Larson had been showing symptoms of depression and her fatal seizure "was in no small way related to her chronic use of Valium and Tylenol PM".[5] She was married to famous session drummer, Russ Kunkel.

    -Brad Moore

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