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The Levon Helm Band [23 Sep 2008|08:33pm]

Last Sunday I had the amazing experience of seeing The Levon Helm band perform in Charlottesville Virginia. It was easily the best show, ever. It wasn't even a concert, it was an experience! I wish I could just live in that moment forever. I found the show and downloaded it and have been listening to it over and over, it's just so damn good.

I highly recommend that anyone who can catch a show to do so. You will not regret it.

Has anyone been to a Midnight Ramble? My mother and I are trying to save up the money to go to one, and take a road trip up to Woodstock. They're rather expensive, but they would be so absolutely worth it. I can't even imagine!

Anyway, I know this community is far from active, but I just had to share some Band love. I've been listening to them for a long time. We watch the Last Waltz every Thanksgiving. We don't look forward to turkey, or to being with family, just watching The Last Waltz. heh

I tend to listen to singer-songwriters primarily, but The Band are easily my favorite...band. Anyway, Hello to everyone! Glad to be here, even if no one else is. haha :)

I didn't get any pictures from the concert, but I did get one of the theatre and it's marquee (I think that's the word). Someone in front of us was filming with their camera, and got in trouble, but there are a few clips on youtube, which I have also been watching obsessively.

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Nirvana No More [15 Apr 2007|11:23pm]

I'd intended to post this one week ago today, on the thirteenth anniversary of Kurt Cobain's death, but was vacationing and high-speed Internet-deprived in Florida. I wrote this piece for The Event, a now defunct Salt Lake City, Utah, alternative newspaper, where it was published on May 16, 1994. Read more...Collapse )
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It was thirty years ago today [25 Nov 2006|09:08pm]

Hello fellow Band fans.
I have loved The Band for a few years now, but I only now joined this community as I realised that

Thirty years ago today, The Band played their final concert, The Last Waltz.

Just thought you might like to know.

*in honour of the date, goes to watch the DVD*
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"Sip the Wine" [19 Jul 2006|01:20pm]

[ mood | contemplative ]

Asked by Rolling Stone back in 1977 to name his ten favorite records of the last ten years, Greil Marcus wrote: "Every record on this list includes some element -- a riff, a guitar line, a vocal inflection, a, shall we say, moment of truth -- that is beyond the ability of the mind to conceive, or even completely absorb. These records seem like miracles to me." 

For me that moment appears in the third line of "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" ("They'll stone you when you're trying to go home)" when Bob Dylan cracks up and evokes a camaraderie that invites the listener to come along and have fun with him. It's how close Van Morrison's mouth is to the microphone on "Crazy Love" (I especially listen for his staccato inhalations at the beginning of each line in the final verse). Or the inflection in John Lennon's voice at the end of "God," first when he declares, "I don't believe in Beatles," then upping the ante with his simple and elegant phrasing of "The dream is over." 

There are similar moments in movies. For Harlan Ellison it's the pure cinematic note which ends Coppola's The Conversation. Werner Herzog never forgot the look on Klaus Kinski's face the first time he saw him onscreen, in a Fifties war film. For Pauline Kael it was the silence shared by Jason Robards (as Howard Hughes) and Paul Le Mat (as Melvin Dummar) in their drive across the desert in Melvin and Howard

Re-watching Martin Scorsese's The Last Waltz the other day, I was reminded of -- and swept away again by -- a moment of truth that's cinematic and musical. It's not Dylan's fiery performance -- or his look, which falls somewhere in between a bearded Born to Run Bruce and Bella Abzug:

                          +    =     

Nor is it Van Morrison's marvelously mad leprechaun performance wherein he seemingly channels both James Joyce and the Radio City Rockettes. And it's not Neil Young's transcendental rendition of "Helpless" (so gorgeous that even the wad of cocaine lurking inside his left nostril, especially visible on DVD, doesn't detract). 

No, for me the defining moment of The Last Waltz occurs after the Band has purportedly played its last concert and the members have gone their separate ways. Away from the boisterousness and bravado of the rest of the group, bassist/guitarist/violinist/trombonist Rick Danko gives Scorsese a tour of Shangri-La, their recording studio, and the two men sit down alone at the mixing board.

                                                                                    Rick Danko

Scorsese asks him what he's doing now that "The Last Waltz" is over. Danko fumbles for words as he shyly looks around for his hat, which he puts it on as if to hide from not only from the director and his question but from his own new role as solo artist. 

"Just making music, you know," he says. "Trying to stay busy... It's healthy." 

He queues up a new song he's recorded, the lovely "Sip the Wine." As his heartbreaking vocals commence and the camera closes in, Danko, who passed away in 1999 at the age of 56, disappears into listening to his creation. And perhaps because he feels uncertain about sharing something so new with someone sitting right in front of him (let alone that someone being Martin Scorsese, who happens to be filming the experience), or maybe it's because he's embarrassed by the intimacy of the song's lyrics --

I want to lay down beside you
I want to hold your body close to mine

-- but Danko nods his head, and the camera captures in slightly slow motion his face completely disappearing into darkness beneath the brim of his noirish hat. 

The effect is breathtaking and, to paraphrase Marcus, ineffably honest.

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Free Your Mind [21 May 2006|06:29pm]

[ mood | curious ]

I was just doing a little browsing on iTunes. I have all the Band studio albums except for Islands and the newer post-Robbie ones. I was listening to some tracks from "High On the Hog" and discovered that they do a cover of En Vogue's "Free Your Mind." Now as intrigued as I was by the little sample, it's not enough to make me want to download it. But it is kinda funny to hear Levon sing..."FREE YOUR MIND AND THE REST WILL FOLLOW..."

Remember the video? Damn, I want to see Levon and the guys perform that number in distinct yet coordinating silver leather outfits with a bit of an S & M flair. Maybe not.

Has anyone heard this cover? Thoughts?

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[25 Apr 2006|10:48pm]

I was just wondering, is it an overreaction on my part to boycott The Guardian forever and ever because of this review?
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[11 Apr 2006|09:57pm]
Hiya, I`m a serious Band fan from Sweden. But I haven't found anyone to talk to about them... Man, those guys. Those beards. And the music. And isn´t "Let the night fall" on Islands just beautiful?
I actually fell in love with the group about a year ago after hearing "Christmas must be tonight". Before that I had listened to them off and on for about two years. I know that Islands isn't supposed to be their best album, but it has a certain charm to it.

Anyone out there that have heard Bobby Charles album "Bobby Charles"? It´s great! Laid back stuff from -72, with Rick D. on bass and Levon H. on drums, and Garth and Richard.
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[21 Mar 2006|10:41pm]

Robbie Robertson is getting ready to perform with Elvis Costello & some other people on the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame 2006 Ceremony.

Just thought you people would like to know!
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[16 Mar 2006|04:58pm]

Levon Helm and his band are performing at my school in may

is it just me or is $50 a lot of money for tickets?
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Newb [13 Mar 2006|03:14pm]

Hey all. I just joined this community because I am a huge fan of The Band, but none of my friends are too keen on them. Anyway, I just wanted to get to know some folks with good taste in music.

Just so you know a little about me: I'm a bass guitarist, a record collector, a Toronto Maple Leafs fan, and I like movies and TV shows with Bruce Campbell in them. I think Music From Big Pink is one of the most beautiful records ever made (aside from the cover artwork, which I'm none too fond of) and I have listened to it at least a dozen times in the last month. So that's a little about me.

Anyway, I just wanted to say hi and introduce myself to the forum.
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[09 Jan 2006|01:17pm]

Hey, check out my post about the purchase I made today on Amazon.

Levon plays an old blind man in Tommy Lee Jones' directorial debut, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada. I think it comes out in April, but I'm not completely sure. But, be sure to check it out. It looks very interesting. I saw the trailer on Video Detective and they show Levon at the very end. :)>

Police officer: Have you seen anyone come through this way?
Levon: I ain't seen anyone in THIRTY YEARS!
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Hello to everyone. [07 Dec 2005|03:36pm]

I'm a new member of the community and have been a fan of The Band since '03. Since '87 if you count my only knowing their song The Weight when I heard it on the second soundtrack to The Big Chill.

Before The Last Waltz Special Edition was released on DVD, I read the article in Rolling Stone magazine about it and decided that I had to have it. I watched it and loved it and bought "Greatest Hits" and then later "Rock Of Ages" with the hopes of building on that collection when I could.

For my birthday (not ON my birthday, it was an early present) last year, my brother got me the 4-Disc set of The Last Waltz soundtrack. That made a particularly bad day much better. My brother is awesome. :)>

True story from today. I live in Dallas and was riding the DART rail to Downtown Dallas. I was reading Levon Helm's autobiography and listening to The Band's Greatest Hits on my iPod. I was towards the end of chapter 8 where he mentions their playing at a festival that he considered bigger than Woodstock. I read about how they started playing their set and had to leave the stage because of rain. Garth goes back out and starts playing organ for awhile and the rain lets up. The Band comes back out and starts playing "Chest Fever". Just as I read that part, "Chest Fever" played on my iPod. You couldn't plan that twice, I'm telling you. I didn't plan it at all. ;)>

That's my story.
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[20 Nov 2005|02:03am]

*cough* band_pictures *cough*
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[13 Nov 2005|02:16am]


I'm new and what-not. Just saying hello I guess--err, again. Yeah. Hello. I like The Last Waltz and I wish I had enough money to get the boxset The Band has out now? (That sounds like me in Spanish with my simple sentences of just stuff I like. I suck so hard in that class.) So, I'm just throwing in random things to make this thing flow smooth, but it seems to not be working. Damn!


. . .

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Hello! [15 Oct 2005|02:04pm]


Hi, I'm new to the group, so I just thought I'd introduce myself :-)

My name is Leslie, and I was thrilled to find this community for The Band. They're one of my favorites of all time, and I can't wait to hear from all their other fans!

I'm glad to be aboard!


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The Band, A Musical History [28 Sep 2005|10:36am]

Okay, I cracked and bought it a day after it was released. I usually don't like boxsets, when I already own most of the songs, but I really have to make an exception for The Band and this one. The first disc is really interesting, it has the stuff with Ronnie Hawkins, and the songs recorded as Levon and the Hawks. Of course it doesn't really hint at what they would become, it is enjoyable good time rock 'n' roll music, and Richard's vocals are really great. After the stuff with Dylan there are some unreleased songs from the Big Pink era, "You Don't Come Through" is a lovely soul ballad kind of thing, which I really like.

Some of the songs that don't claim to be unreleased do seem to be different in terms of the mixing and sound quality. Like Ain't No More Cane, from the Basement Tapes. On this set it sounds a lot cleaner, as it has often been suggested that some of The Band's contributions to the Basement Tapes album were actually recorded later, and deliberately had to the sound quality reduced to fit in with Dylan's basement recordings. Anyway, it is nice to hear this song, one of my favourites, in a cleaner mix. Another nice traditional song on the set is "Will the Circle Be Unbroken", while only a fragment of the song, it still sounds great. Oh, and the studio version of "Don't Do It" included here is vastly superior to the one on the Cahoots reissue. It's the same performance, but the sound quality is so much better.

Another treat on here is "Home Cookin'" a rare Rick Danko composition performed by The Band, which is rather endearing.

The real selling point of this boxset is the DVD. There is film of footage of the Rock of Ages performance of "Don't Do It"! Really, words can't express how great is is to see that.

Oh, and there are some great photos in the booklet, I'd not seen before.

I don't really have time to go through all of the aspects of the boxset I like, but there are a few. I think it's well worth getting.
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This movie is great! [26 Sep 2005|06:58pm]

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Todd Rundgren - Runt - 1970 (Bearsville) ****+ [13 Sep 2005|06:09pm]


Todd was a member of the US band The Nazz in the 60's, they produced 3 albums, and then Rundgren decided to start his own career. He is a multi-instrumentalist, sings great, writes music and songs, produces, and makes his own strange magic with sound and harmonies.

His first album is not crazy like his later works, but the melodies are very fresh and new, and it doesn't sound like other bands. The album consists of 10 compositions, all of them are diverse in sound and style. There are acoustic songs, nearly hard-rock numbers, psychedelic stuff, but roots-rock and rhythm and blues is also here. These tracks are great, Todd is a fantastic writer and performer!

These people play with Rundgren here: Michael Brooks - drums; Levon Helm - drums; Rick Danko - bass; Don Ferris - bass; Mark Klingman - keys; John Miller - bass; Bobby Moses - drums; Hunt Sales - percussion; Tony Sales - bass; Don Lee Van Winkle - guitars. Two members of The Bans, as you can see.

Тодд был участником группы The Nazz в 60-е годы, они записали 3 альбома, а потом Рандгрен решил заняться сольной карьерой. Он играет на огромном количестве музыкальных инструментов, прекрасно поет, пишет песни и музыку, продюсирует, шаманит со звуком и гармониями.

На первом альбоме шаманства и экспериментов мало, но мелодии необычные и сразу ясно, что это НИ НА ЧТО НЕ ПОХОЖЕ. На диске 10 композиций (одна, правда, состоит из трех), все разные по стилям и звуку. Есть красивые акустические песни, есть почти хард-рок, психоделия, а также много элементов рутс-рока и ритм-н-блюза. Тодд УМЕЕТ писать песни - тут нет проходных вещей вообще!

Мы знаем, что Тодд любил записывать альбомы в одиночку, но тут это не так. С ним играют: Michael Brooks - drums; Levon Helm - drums; Rick Danko - bass; Don Ferris - bass; Mark Klingman - keys; John Miller - bass; Bobby Moses - drums; Hunt Sales - percussion; Tony Sales - bass; Don Lee Van Winkle - guitars. Как видите, тут есть даже два участника группы The Band - это замечательно. Много разных музыкантов, они создают разные звуки и настроения. Если я не ошибаюсь, этот диск вовсе не концептуальный, но когда его слушаешь, кажется, что он грамотно составлен и песни тщательно отобраны.

Прекрасный диск, но можно сказать, что он звучит чуть out-of-time для 1970 года (это больше похоже на 1968-ой).
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Cate Bros. Band - 1977 (Asylum) **** [22 Sep 2005|04:44pm]


US Southern-Soul duo comprising twins Ernie and Earl Cate. They signed to Asylum in 1975 and released their first album with assistance from, among others, Steve Cropper, Duck Dunn, Timothy Schmidt, Nigel Olsson, Klaus Voorman and Levon Helm. In the early 80's, the brothers and current band members joined Helm and others in a re-formation of the Band, the entire quartet replacing Robbie Robertson.

This album is a mix of roots-rock and soul-rock. Ernie plays the keys and Earl plays guitar; they both sing well. Ron Eoff is on bass, Terry Cagle plays the drums and sings backing vocals. You can say that their music sounds a bit like The Band, The Eagles or Poco; and it's great, of course.

И так, эта группа с юга США. Братья Кейт - Эрни (клавиши, вокал) и Эрл (гитара, вокал). С ними в группе ритм-секция - Ron Eoff (bass) & Terry Cagle (drums/vocals). На этом (их первом) диске с ними играют также великолепные музыканты: Joe Lala - percussion; Timothy Schmidt - vocals и другие. Музыка в духе рутс-рока, но с сильным влиянием соула. Можно сказать, что их стиль похож одновременно на The Band, Eagles и Poco. Хорошие песни, игра и пение.

Самое интересное то, что Левон Хелм потом позвал их в группу The Band вместо Робби Робертсона! И они выступали вместе в начале 80-х. Интересная и довольно редкая группа; ничего нет на компакт-дисках, как я понимаю.
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[09 Sep 2005|08:50pm]

[ mood | I want that. ]

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

That is one nice looking boxset. I really, really want to watch the DVD.

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