Released in 1969, Crosby, Stills & Nash is one of pop music's most audacious and successful debut albums. Arguably the Woodstock generation's No. 1 soundtrack, the record also helped usher in the supergroup movement, as well as the growing intersection between country music and rock.
In terms of the music industry, the success of Crosby, Stills & Nash kick-started a massive shift in power and perception by proving that hippie music and culture then on the outside of society looking in could be packaged and sold to a mainstream pop audience, albeit a new form of mainstream pop audience, one that dug love beads and longhairs, rather than beehive hairdos and Tricky Dick.
At the time, 1969, David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash were leaders of the counterculture. They were California rebels making rebel music. In hindsight, however, there is nothing at all rebellious about their first record. Stripped of all cultural baggage, Crosby, Stills & Nash now stands as a wonderfully crafted album: songs, arrangements, production, instrumentation, everything. The genius of the trio was in the way they wove just about every major music trend of the 1960s from folk revivalism and acid rock to British Invasion cool and Indian music into a pop aesthetic that was insanely catchy.
Below are 10 albums that help contextualize Crosby, Stills & Nash both sonically and historically.