Friday, January 31, 2014

Director's response to Warner Music Group's removal of Neil Young atCarnegie Hall Video

… If anyone in Warner Music Group is reading this ...

While Warner Music Group certainly has the legal right to remove the video I produced, I am frustrated that no one from the company contacted me directly. Sure, I'm just a small fish in a gigantic pond, but I obviously touched on a nerve here. I simply received a standard email from youtube noting the copyright infringement.

I see the viral nature of this video as an opportunity for Warner Music Group to make a progressive move towards a more modern way of dealing with fan-produced media. I wish they would have seen this as a chance to take a leading role in the rapidly changing world of online media distribution… especially when dealing with one of the world's most respected and prolific entertainers who, after 40+ years of performing, still has an amazingly solid connection with his fans.

I wish they would have considered an alternative way to preserve and present this magical event to Neil Young's fans instead of just removing it. So if anyone out there in Warner Brothers-land is reading this, I'm all ears and just a click away

-Tom Adams
Director/Owner Reelife Documentary Productions

Original interview with The Village Voice:
The Village Voice Article "Behind the Infamous Neil Young Carnegie Hall Concert Taping"

Related Press:
Village Voice

Monte WRSI interview:

Toronto Star:

Wall Street Journal

Howard Stern's Tweet:

Thrasher's Wheat



Neil on piracy:


  1. Hello Tom,
    From our perspective, we have a very similar dilemma.

    What is appropriate at the concert and what is appropriate handling of the concert "souvenirs".

    As we've discussed on our blog and TW Radio, it is the concert experience which is most sacred and nothing should be done to detract from others enjoyment. Clearly, you took pains to avoid.

    On TW, as a general policy we don't post bootleg links. OTOH, we're permanently linked over to Rust Radio.

    Lastly, as with all things, discretion is key.


    1. right on. thanks for the support. Things may get more interesting as I take it to the next level and actually try to convince the powers to be that they could be benefit from actually embracing the video and sharing it to an even wider audience. Naive of of me…maybe, but it's worth a shot… this concert was absolutely phenomenal and a historic example of just how damn good Neil can be...

  2. Never underestimate the power of naivety.

    Neil's been sometimes considered "naive" and look where that's gotten him with his music, cars, PONO, etc. :)

    Good luck and keep us posted. We're obviously fascinated.