Category Archives: The Band

April 19: Levon Helm died four years ago, Rest In Peace

April 19: Levon Helm died four years ago, Rest In Peace

Mark Lavon “Levon” Helm , was an American rock multi-instrumentalist and actor who achieved fame as the drummer and frequent lead and backing vocalist for The Band.

Helm was known for his deeply soulful, country-accented voice, and creative drumming style highlighted on many of The Band’s recordings, such as “The Weight”, “Up on Cripple Creek”, “Ophelia” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”.

“The Mountain.” (written by Steve Earle) From Levon Helm’s album “Dirt Farmer.” Photographs by Lewis Hine. Levon’s distinct vocal and forceful performance really shines in this wonderful interpretation (audio only):

Continue reading April 19: Levon Helm died four years ago, Rest In Peace

April 13: Bob Dylan Sydney, Australia 1966 (audio)

bob dylan sydney 1966

 

Dylan’s 66 world tour is the best tour ever… by anyone. I know you all agree.

By the time we did the Australia and Europe tours we had discovered whatever this thing was. It was not light, it was not folky. It was very dynamic, very explosive and very violent.
~Robbie Robertson

By this point, Dylan, Robertson, and Co. knew instinctively that what they were doing was right, in every sense of the word. If the Hawks had been a little hesitant in their playing back in the fall of 1965, the music they were producing now was stately, immense, compelling. The sound itself had a thousand precursors, but no precedent. It was, indeed, ‘very explosive and very violent.’
~Clinton Heylin (Bob Dylan: Behind the Shades Revisited)

The Bob Dylan World Tour 1966 was a concert tour undertaken by American musician Bob Dylan, from February to May 1966. Dylan’s 1966 World Tour was notable as the first tour where Dylan employed an electric band backing him, following his “going electric” at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival. The musicians Dylan employed as his backing band were known as The Hawks; they subsequently became famous as The Band. The 1966 tour was filmed by director D. A. Pennebaker. Pennebaker’s footage was edited by Dylan and Howard Alk to produce a little-seen film, Eat the Document, an anarchic account of the tour. Drummer Mickey Jones also filmed the tour with an 8mm home movie camera. Many of the 1966 tour concerts were recorded by Columbia Records. These recordings produced one official album, the so-called “Royal Albert Hall” concert, and also many unofficial bootleg recordings of the tour.Dylan’s 1966 Tour ended with his motorcycle accident on July 29, 1966. Subsequent to Dylan’s withdrawal to Woodstock, he refrained from undertaking a major tour until 1974.
~Wikipedia

Continue reading April 13: Bob Dylan Sydney, Australia 1966 (audio)

Bob Dylan – Great Duets part 7: Hidden Gems





A duet is a musical composition for two performers in which the performers have equal importance to the piece. It is often used to describe a composition involving two singers. It differs from a harmony, as the performers take turns performing a solo section rather than performing simultaneously.

Part1, Part2, Part3, Part4, Part5, Part6

Bob Dylan has done a lot of duets, we have collected some of our favourites and will present them in batches of three. Today we have really dug deep and come up with some seldom heard treasures. Continue reading Bob Dylan – Great Duets part 7: Hidden Gems

Nov 25: The Last Waltz with The Band and friends was recorded in 1976

Last-Waltz

This film should be played loud!

This is a message on a title card at the beginning of the film. The greatest concert movie ever made. This post concerns the movie, the audio releases have to wait for it’s own post.

Wikipedia:

The Last Waltz was a concert by the rock group The Band, held on American Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1976, at Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco. The Last Waltz was advertised as the end of The Band’s illustrious touring career, and the concert saw The Band joined by more than a dozen special guests, including Paul Butterfield, Eric Clapton, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris, Ronnie Hawkins, Dr. John, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Ringo Starr, Muddy Waters, Ronnie Wood, Bobby Charles and Neil Young.

The event was filmed by director Martin Scorsese and made into a documentary of the same name, released in 1978. The film features concert performances, scenes shot on a studio soundstage and interviews by Scorsese with members of The Band. A triple-LP soundtrack recording, produced by Rob Fraboni, was issued in 1978. The film was released on DVD in 2002 as was a four-CD box set of the concert and related studio recordings.

Trailer:

I have several versions of the film, and I’ve seen many versions of it. I’ve seen it at the cinema, I’ve played it to death on video casette, I have two DVD releases , a blu-ray release and I’ve seen/heard quite a bit of bootlegs of the show.

This is a film that I’m really passionate about, and I have often wondered if there’s footage, filmed sequences, that is not in the official version. Whatever condition such film would be in was irrelevant, I wanted to see as much as possible of the legendary concert.

Continue reading Nov 25: The Last Waltz with The Band and friends was recorded in 1976

October 27: Robbie Robertson released his self-titled solo debut in 1987

robbie robertson

“…Robbie Robertson is an album that represents both a clear break from his past, and an ambitious attempt to take his fascination with American culture and music in a new and contemporary direction. It’s highly ambitious stuff…”
– Mark Deming (allmusic.com)

Robbie Robertson is the self-titled solo debut by Robbie Robertson, released in 1987. The album won the Juno Award for “Album of the Year”, and producers Lanois and Robertson won the “Producer of the Year” Juno award, both in 1989 as there were no Juno Awards held in 1988.

The album includes contributions from the members of U2 and Peter Gabriel, both of whom were also working with producer Daniel Lanois at the time. U2 was recording The Joshua Tree and Gabriel was recording So. U2’s contribution is heard in the song “Sweet Fire of Love” which is a duet of sorts between Robertson and U2 lead singer Bono. The other track featuring U2 is “Testimony”, again with vocals from Bono. Gabriel’s contributions are heard on the song “Fallen Angel”, which was dedicated to Robertson’s former Band bandmate Richard Manuel, and “Broken Arrow” which reverberates with Gabriel’s signature Rhodes electric piano. In addition, Tony Levin and Manu Katché, who were recording with Gabriel, are featured prominently on this record.

In 2005 the album was reissued together with Storyville as 2CD in an expanded edition, both with two bonus tracks.

Fantastic album, one of my favourite albums from the 80s.

Robbie Robertson – Somewhere Down The Crazy River (official video):

Continue reading October 27: Robbie Robertson released his self-titled solo debut in 1987