Neil Diamond has enjoyed a career that spans more than 50 years, but he’s never been one to indulge in the perks of being a famous musician. On the latest episode of True Stories on VOLUME (Ch. 106), Diamond explained to Kurt Loder why he chose not to be a party animal.
Diamond started his career in the 1960s — a time when musicians enjoyed a bevy of available vices — but rather than indulge, Diamond chose to forge a straight and narrow path because he wanted to put all of his energy towards putting on a great show.
“I’ve never been a party monster,” Diamond said. “When you’re on the road, you’re in a conservation mode. You have to conserve your energy, your emotions, everything for that period that you’re on stage, and that’s the way it’s always been.”
The perfectionist that he is, Diamond said he couldn’t even write songs while he was on tour. He is proud of the fact that he was able to avoid the pitfalls that await musicians by instead focusing all his effort into creating an amazing tour his fans would enjoy.
“There’s very little that I do on the road, except think about the show, focus in on the show, rehearse the show sometimes, and put everything into the show. That’s what it’s about,” he said.
An acclaimed songwriter whose hits such as You Don’t Bring Me Flowers, America, and I’m A Believer earned him a spot in the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1984, Diamond also discussed one of his most renowned songs, Sweet Caroline. The tune has become a staple at sporting events and weddings and is even an unofficial anthem for the Boston Red Sox.
“It’s of course gratifying that everybody knows that song or about that song,” Diamond said. “It’s become a star within itself, and I’m very proud of it.”
Catch replays of Diamond’s chat on True Stories on Monday 11/28 at 8 p.m. ET, Thursday 12/1 at 6 a.m. ET, Saturday 12/3 at 3 p.m. ET, and Sunday 12/4 at 5 a.m. ET and 11 a.m. ET on VOLUME (Ch. 106).