Political, environmental and humanitarian awareness, advocacy and activism have been consistent threads in Young’s life's mission and music. In 1985, Young co-founded, the still active Farm Aid with Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp. Neil Young and Pegi Young organized the Bridge School Benefit Concerts which for three decades had become an annual, all acoustic, non-profit charity event. The Bridge School ensures that children with severe speech and physical impairments achieve full participation in their communities through the use of assistive technology and the development, implementation and dissemination of innovative educational strategies. The weekend concerts have drawn an international array of musical artists from Bruce Springsteen to Elton John to Guns N’ Roses and have raised significant resources for the school. A portion of proceeds from this auction will benefit The Bridge School.
In addition, Young is the author of several books including the best selling 2012 autobiography “Waging Heavy Peace: A Hippie Dream.” His critically lauded personal memoir about his career, family life and pursuits reveal his passions for collecting model trains to classic cars, items which will be offered at auction for the first time.
Young forayed into, and found success as a producer, director, screenwriter, entrepreneur and inventor. Inventing the CAB-1, the first truly user-friendly remote control in the toy train industry, he invented Train Master Command Control (which allows you to run multiple trains at once), as well as RailSounds (which provides realistic railroad audio). Beloved in the model train community for these inventions, Young is revered for his passion for model railroading, magnificent layouts, ownership in Lionel beginning in the early1990s.
Julien’s Auctions will present over 230 items from Young's vast collection of Lionel trains. Included are dozens of rare and unique items such as prototypes for Lionel production locomotives and rolling stock, many of them from the fabled Lionel Archives; prototypes for Young’s RailSounds and Trainmaster inventions for Lionel, and several one-of-a-kind Lionel products featuring hallmarks of Neil Young including his name, his home Broken Arrow Ranch and his record company, Vapor Records. Many of these items have been run on his monumental Broken Arrow Ranch model train layout that he built with his son, Ben Young. He designed train control devices for Ben, who has cerebral palsy, and others with disabilities so they can enjoy the thrill of running a model train layout.