Teach Your Children (2:49)

Cover of Box Set

From Box Set and 23 other releases

“Teach Your Children” is a song by Graham Nash. Although it was written when Nash was a member of The Hollies, it was never recorded by that group, and first appeared on the album Deja Vu by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released in 1970. It quickly became a counterculture anthem, one of the first public performances of the song having taken place on November 15, 1969, at a San Francisco rally against the Vietnam war, shortly after the album was recorded but before its release. The recording features Jerry Garcia on pedal steel guitar, probably the first time that Garcia recorded with that instrument.

Although the song was probably based in part on Nash’s difficult relationship with his father, Nash, who is also a photographer and collector of photographs, has stated in an interview that the immediate inspiration for the song came from a famous photograph by Diane Arbus, “Child with Toy Hand Grenade in Central Park.” The image, which depicts a child with an angry expression holding the toy weapon, prompted Nash to reflect on the societal implications of messages given to children about war and other issues.

“Teach Your Children” was used in a 1970s public service message on television highlighting the negative aspect of nuclear testing and proliferation. The clip portrayed multiple nuclear explosions carried out by the United States.

It was later used in several ads for the Mondale/Ferraro ticket in the 1984 United States presidential election
It was also performed in the Six Feet Under episode “Falling Into Place”.


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Albums featuring this track (24)

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  • dragonswings

    Second time in 90 minutes. 949.

    28 Jul 4:59pm Reply
  • dragonswings


    27 Jul 2:52pm Reply
  • dragonswings


    23 Jul 9:28pm Reply
  • dragonswings

    924. Three times today.

    13 Jul 9:20pm Reply
  • dragonswings

    Up to 922. No song should ever be played this much.

    13 Jul 5:45pm Reply
  • pteronophobic

    I intend to teach my children well, I will expose them to this music. Also, the wiki is incorrect. Jerry Garcia played pedal steel on "The Farm" by Jefferson Airplane a year earlier. Jerry seemed to play with everyone. It's those hippie-dippie (LSD?) connections.

    19 Jun 6:25pm Reply
  • dragonswings

    Last.fm: how is it that this song has played 886 times (according to Scrobbles), and other, wonderful songs have only played 7 times? Please check your settings/

    18 Jun 6:29pm Reply
  • Juan-k_86

    Lisa's from Six Feet Under favourite song :)

    12 Apr 1:44pm Reply
  • G8Rbuttercups

    Great song. Takes away the road rage; I might encounter... Look at them and sigh'♥♥

    10 Mar 7:58pm Reply
  • davidgeorgea

    Good ... (( * _ * )) .. to teach values ..

    15 Aug 2014 Reply
  • silversurfer250

    Old Hippies getting down on it...

    22 Mar 2014 Reply
  • bercer

    great band"" great oldies"", rock on"

    12 Feb 2014 Reply
  • blueskyfrank

    Great song...

    20 Dec 2013 Reply
  • angeleyes001

    Love this song!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So true!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    4 Nov 2013 Reply
  • marjo47

    So true {lyrics} but nowdays it seems that people are more ocupied with their own busynes... Work, social media etc. Its not only feeding and clothing your child being a good parent but it takes realy time and your heart in bringing them up. What a fab. band this still is!

    11 Oct 2013 Reply
  • bonene59

    Joop ;-)

    8 Oct 2013 Reply
  • fatkitty13

    @ senorhippie - Same with me and my son.

    16 Sep 2013 Reply
  • r-iman

    coolest thing i ever saw was on may 7 watching my 11 year old sing along with very one at the CSN concert. to this song.

    13 Jun 2013 Reply
  • technozenexp

    Jerry's pedal steel is perfect for this song

    15 May 2013 Reply
  • TheEternalCity

    Teach your self good music!

    26 Apr 2013 Reply
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