Remember that adage about how it's hard to miss someone if they won't stay away? In the case of Crosby, Stills and Nash, that saying still applies, but in a good way. Dominant more than 40 years ago as an early "super" group and originators of the West Coast folk-rock sound, they became the voices of outrage whenever issues and circumstance dictated.
The threesome now comfortably nestles into Woodstock-imbued nostalgia, but they take their venerable stance seriously. Flawless harmonies remain intact, and the revered chestnuts from their catalog — "Wooden Ships," "Our House," "Teach Your Children," "Almost Cut My Hair," "Guinevere," and, yes, "Woodstock" — remain ready to please to this day. While their gray hair and middle-age paunch may be all too evident, the musicians have freely owned up to bouts and bruises along the way, even while embracing their role as elder statesmen who played an integral part in rock's ongoing evolution. Their participation in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 25th anniversary extravaganza earlier this year and a promised covers album recasting songs of the '60s offer nods to their troubadour tradition, but it's CS&N's refusal to retire from the road that best attests to their determination to — in the words of their evergreen anthem of affirmation — carry on.