Anyone who enjoyed the Sons of Anarchy will tell you they wished there was more SOA. As mentioned SOA is my all time, number one favourite series to date. I won’t go into how much we all loved Jax as today, I am going to write about some things Bill and have noticed recently. Today, I am writing about Neil Young’s Heart of Gold.
While on a trip to London awhile ago, Neil Young’s Heart of Gold came on the radio. As Bill and I were singing along, Bill stopped and said, “Hey, Redwood is in this song”. I looked at him and said…..”OKKKK”. Bill replied, “Redwood is the gang in the Sons”.
The SAMCRO acronym stands for “Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club Redwood Original“. To my friend Google I went and WOW Kurt Sutter, you amaze me. When I started to dig deaper, I found how in-depth and involved some of the story lines, songs and characters were deeply inbedded in the series.
For instance, Redwood Original was used because: The club was formed in 1967 by John Tellerand Piermont “Piney” Winston, following their return from service as paratroopers during theVietnam War. The first charter was called “Redwood”, simply because they weren’t settled in any one city. They cruised the Northern California coast from Eureka to Big Sur, which is Redwood country. It wasn’t until after Gemma Teller, John’s wife, became pregnant with her first son, Jackson, that they decided to settle in Charming, the town where Gemma grew up. At that point, John Teller thought Charming was a little too cute for a charter name, so he called the charter the Redwood Originals. That’s when the SAMCRO handle was born. Now keep in mind this is fiction but as you read through some of the background, it is easy to let your mind wander into reality.
Now you are asking where does “Heart of Gold” come into play. The song was released in 1972 so the era really fits. Although it appears the song was never played on an episode(although we did hear another Neal Young tune), there are references that definitely pull the song and the SOA series together. For instance:
Sons of Anarchy Season 7 Episode 4, … and the always great Kim Dickens as the hooker with a heart of gold, (Colette).
The reference to Redwood in the Heart of Gold Lyrics:
I’ve been to Hollywood
I’ve been to Redwood
I crossed the ocean for a heart of gold.
I’ve been in my mind,
It’s such a fine line
That keeps me searching for a heart of gold.
- I see this reference as very similar to the Redwood Original tag…..John and Piney had travelled all over but the settled for the all encompassing “Redwood”
Think I am digging a bit? While as I investigated further into the link between the Sons of Anarchy and The Heart of Gold, I continued to “hit” great stuff on the internet. For instance, check out this rendition by “Black Label Society”. A remake of The Heart of Gold, set to Opie and his wife Donna. Check it out….Spanish subtitles and all.
How about Jax and Tara set to the original Heart of Gold. SOA Brasil.
Or how about Tig(Kim Coates) and Pinterest. This one is a group of writers talking about Tig making stupid decisions but having a “Heart of Gold.”
I loved writing this article, checking out the connections, listening to the different versions of Heart of Gold and seeing all my old favourites come to life again. This will not be my last Sons of Anarchy article linked to a song.
Take Care and EnJOY
“Heart of Gold” – Neil Young