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Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 23 Apr 2016, 04:20
by fange
A tangential connection, I know, but I've been listening to Sonny Boy a lot this week, and stumbled upon this interview with RR talking about The Band's meeting and playing with him just before Sonny Boy died.





We're talking dreams now...

An interesting interview about some wonderful and scary moments in time, musically and historically.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 25 Apr 2016, 12:33
by modharper
Originally posted on The Band site:

Robbie Robertson: Testimony -- A Memoir

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Robbie Robertson's long-awaited memoir, release date November 15, 2016.

One of the most spellbinding, entertaining, major books of the fall: the long-awaited memoir from the Canadian music legend takes us candidly, in his own voice, into his extraordinary life and friendships with some of the greatest artists of the last half-century.
Robbie Robertson's singular contributions to popular music have made him one of the most beloved songwriters and guitarists of all time. But few could have expected that a young Canadian would pen some of the most distinctively American songs, music that seems soaked in the mythology of the Old South. With songs like "The Weight," "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," and "Up on Cripple Creek," Robertson and his partners in The Band fashioned a new popular music lexicon that has endured for decades, influencing countless musicians.

In this captivating memoir of The Band's storied career, Robertson weaves together his half-Jewish, half-Mohawk upbringing on the Brantford Six Nations Reserve and in Toronto; his odyssey south at sixteen and rollicking early years on the road with rockabilly legend Ronnie Hawkins; the slow formation of The Band, their trial-by-fire with Bob Dylan on his 1966 world tour, and the forging of their unique sound. He recounts being catapulted to fame with the success of their groundbreaking debut, and takes us through the astonishing run of albums that culminated in one of history's most famous farewell concerts: the movie The Last Waltz, directed by Martin Scorcese.

This is the story of a time and place--the moment when rock 'n' roll became life, when electric blues legends like Muddy Waters and Otis Rush criss-crossed the circuit of clubs and roadhouses from Texas to Toronto. It's the story of exciting change as the world tumbled into the '60s, and figures like Dylan and The Band redefined music and culture, with a little help from sex and drugs. And it's the moving story of the profound friendship between five young men who together created a new kind of popular music.
--amazon.com

Robbie Robertson - Testimony -- A Rock'n'Roll Life - 336 pages - Knopf Canada - 2016 - ISBN 978-0307401397
Also available as audiobook CD and Kindle e-book

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 02 Aug 2017, 16:13
by modharper
A very happy 80th birthday to Garth "Honey Boy" Hudson, still tickling the ivories after all these years!

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Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 02 Aug 2017, 17:05
by The Modernist
I picked The Band for Hatz' 'it's complicated..' thread which was about bands which you felt conflicted towards. I didn't get any response there, so I may as well post my answers to Hatz' questions on this.

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I rarely feel this way about any musical act as I find I'm quite polarised in the way I respond to music, but there is one band I do have these conflicting feelings about..funnily enough The Band.

What do you like about them?

Let's just say everything I love about them is embodied in that performance of "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" from The Last Waltz; I've watched this repeatedly over the last few years. It's really as good as music gets - an incredibly heartfelt and soulful vocal performance, poignant lyrics, great playing which manages to sound effortless.
What do you hate about them?

Hate is too strong a word, but I am disappointed by how mediocre they often can be, even on the first two supposedly classic albums. Too many songs that sound like genre exercises in "good time" Americana ( Rag Mama Rag is a good example of the kind of thing I mean) and which just don't stick with me. Great musicians, but I've come to the conclusion there just wasn't enough strong songwriting within the group (Robertson is obviously the best, but even he was hit and miss).
What small or large change could turn them into a band you unconditionally love?

More songs of the quality of The Weight and Dixie. It's a shame because there's something about the idea of them and their story which attracts, but I haven't entirely given up on them.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 07 Aug 2017, 23:04
by Quaco
I agree, G. A few other songs that I find great are "Tears of Rage" and "I Shall be Released", but yeah, they are not that consistent with the songwriting. Not as far as my tastes go, anyway. To be fair, it's not exactly my style of music so I judge it more harshly, as one is likely to judge something one doesn't know much about. Conversely, I'll like any dumb psychedelic song.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 08 Aug 2017, 03:27
by Charlie O.
"Rag Mama Rag" is one of my favorites! I don't hear it as a genre exercise at all... unless the exercise is to make a record that rocks and rolls as much as a Huey Smith song but using a tuba for bass, a fiddle for lead, and sticking the piano player behind the drum kit.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 08 Aug 2017, 03:41
by Loki
I'm behind Charlie on this one. :)

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 10 Aug 2017, 10:04
by FOR5
What a great post, I get it modharper, I get it.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 12 Feb 2019, 14:11
by modharper
Thanks to whatever algorithms are going on in the dungeons of Facebook HQ, this video popped up on my timeline today:



I had a few spare minutes post-lunch, and hadn't seen this performance in its entirety in a while, so indulged myself. Honestly, it still did incite a few goosebumps as they entered that joyous coda and all those kids (and some random old man with comedy glasses) stormed the stage.

But wait, I hear you cry, what's the relevance here to The Band?

Well, I'd never noticed before, but listen to Macca's improvs at 6:19 and 6:26: "Take a load off, Fanny,” he bawls.

Nice little nod, I thought.

Right, back to work.

Re: BCB 130 - THE BAND

Posted: 15 Apr 2019, 11:54
by modharper
This fantastic fan-filmed 8mm footage has (as far as I'm aware) recently surfaced of The Band from The Last Waltz in November 1976.

There's a quick snipped of 'Chest Fever', and then, intriguingly, an alternate version of 'Evangeline' that segues from the 'Last Waltz Theme' intro, which never made the cut for either the film or any subsequent audio formats, and then all of Bob Dylan's set.

It's not on YouTube, so I can't embed, so using URL link in meantime unless anyone can post...?