From Hank to Hendrix
I'll walk these streets with you
Here I am with this old guitar
Doin' what I do

I always expected
That you would see me through
I never believed in much
But I believed in you

Can we get it together?
Can we still stand side by side?
Can we make it last
Like a musical ride?

From Marilyn to Madonna
I always loved your smile
Now we're headed
for the big divorce
California-style

I found myself singin'
Like a long-lost friend
The same thing that makes you live
Can kill you in the end

Can we get it together?
Can we still stand side by side?
Can we make it last
Like a musical ride?

Sometime it's distorted
Not clear to you
Sometimes the beauty of love
Just comes ringin' through

New glass in the window
New leaf on the tree
New distance between us
You and me

Can we get it together?
Can we still walk side by side?
Can we make it last
Like a musical ride?


Lyrics submitted by jbak368

From Hank to Hendrix song meanings
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12 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentThis song may not seem like much, but my dad used to play this for me when I was still little and I didn't understand why him and my mom didn't live together anymore. The harmonica used to soothe me on the way home. I'm surprised more people don't know about the Harvest Moon album, because it really is fantastic.
    Grottolaon March 22, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthe Hank in the song title is Hank Marvin of The Shadows not hank williams as some people tend to think, Hank was one of neil's first guitar heroes.
    youknowimrighton August 22, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentyeah its definately about a split with a woman, with the music weighing in as well.
    "Can we get it together?
    Can we still stand side by side?
    Can we make it last
    Like a musical ride?"

    alot of people can relate with this song very easily.
    "The same thing that makes you live
    Can kill you in the end"
    If there is a breakup the fact that you are without that person you loved so dearly can kill you.

    i think the references of "hank to hendrix" and "marilyn to madonna" are just references of time. he has loved her the whole time, from old to new.

    anyways, thats my take.
    great song, one of my favourites from neil.
    shamion March 30, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentHank is Neil's guitar that was once owned by Hank Williams. Neil has had this guitar for many years. It represents an older type of music. Then Hendrix came along and did things with a guitar that have never been surpassed.
    Neil was a typical horny teen boy around 1960 with a crush on Monroe, but then she died. Today (c 1992 when song came out), Madonna is the sex symbol. But whereas with the guitar something was gained, in this case something was lost. Similarly, the lust he initially had for his wife has declined and he wonders if they will just be another California couple who divorce. However, he has children (with disabilities) with this woman and hopes to continue together.
    walterwon October 06, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAs an added note. Neil's music covers a wide range of listener ages. I'm 56 and play guitar at a personal care home for seniors. One 90 something resident in particular really enjoyed my music. When lookin thru his cd collection I came across Neil Youngs Harvest Moon with a piece of masking tape on it. Written in black felt marker my favourite. I feel the same way
    Dalton Vargaon January 14, 2017   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm thinking it might be about him trying to reconcile his first marriage in light of his career as a musician. Might be totally off, but I think it could make sense.
    kubfannon March 21, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMadonna was divorcing from Shaun Penn about the same time that this song was written - and it was in California.
    chrisb1on April 04, 2008   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningHarvest Moon was a long awaited followup of After The Goldrush.
    This song is about Neil youngs relation with his public during all those years, , when he started, until now.
    I'll walk these streets with you (all these years I made music for you, while we both grew older)
    Here I am with this old guitar
    Doin' what I do

    I always expected
    That you would see me through
    I never believed in much
    But I believed in you (you=the audience, his fans)

    Can we get it together?
    Can we still stand side by side?
    Can we make it last
    Like a musical ride?

    From Marilyn to Madonna (Marilyn Monroe style-icon for Madonna)
    I always loved your smile
    Now we're headed
    for the big divorce
    California-style

    I found myself singin'
    Like a long-lost friend
    The same thing that makes you live (This is a phrase which is true on many levels: addiction will make live, but will kill you in the end. Love can give strenghth, but great sorrow when it is lost, your personality will achieve things, while it will also be your ultimate burden)
    Can kill you in the end
    simpelmanson July 13, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always enjoyed how Neil puts pop culture icons in his lyrics. It makes the song more personal, like it does with Marlon Brando in "Pocahontas."
    leGrawon February 28, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI play guitar and harmonica and already play a dozen Neil Young songs. In my opinion Neil's at his best with his harmonica and acoustic guitar in his hands. I just added this song yesterday to my repritar. Bueatiful heart felt lyrics and soothing harmonica riffs. Thanks Neil
    Dalton Vargaon January 14, 2017   Link

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