Backstage The Band were a mix of emotions. Robertson recalls an “anxious but ready” Scorsese, and that each member of the Band was calm and collected.
At around nine the The Berkeley Promenade Orchestra left stage and the house lights slowly dimmed. A large curtain of shimmering confetti lit from all sides was let down in front of the stage, chandeliers were then lowered to a position above the stage, increasing in glow as they descended.
Suddenly, in the darkness, a spotlight erupted on...
Originally released on The Band: A History's Patreon. We sit down and talk with Breanna McCann, the curator and archivist behind the new project The Manuel Archive.
We discuss her love of The Band, and how it started with their song "Acadian Driftwood", her passion for sixties and seventies culture, film and music and what her motivation was for starting The Manuel Archive. Breanna also talks about her interest in Richard Manuel as well as her opinion on his portrayal from writers, critics...
This week we sit down and chat with Joe Forno. Forno was born in Woodstock, New York. His father an influential local and was friendly with The Band. Forno graduated Albany College of Pharmacy in 1973 and had a career as a pharmacist before assisting Richard Manuel and Levon Helm with their business dealings in 1983 that eventually lead to Forno managing The Band after Richard Manuel’s unfortunate death in 1986.
We talk to Joe about his career managing The Band, his personal relationships...
“None of us truly understood where we were headed, but we knew change was inevitable.”
The Band meant something, their music had spoken to many. Whether that meant flying from another continent, taking a train cross country, selling their worldly possessions or quitting a job, even the slightest hint that The Band could hang it up caused a reaction, a tidal wave.
And while uncertainty hung in the air for everyone involved and feelings were mixed. The Last Waltz as it was titled, was about to...
The release of Northern Lights - Southern Cross seemed like a new beginning or a re-conquering of rock music for The Band, but that was all critical appraisal. Northern Lights - Southern Cross publicly and privately held very different truths.
Deemed a comeback, and with that the expectation The Band resumed their mantle as kings of authentic rock music, The Band didn’t really see it that way on the inside. As critical praise mounted, starting with their massive tour with Dylan in 1974...
Fans of The Band may know Jonathan Taplin from his time as a road manger for The Band, but Jon’s career spans several decades in multiple industries.
A Princeton grad who marched with Martin Luther King, he was drawn to folk music from people like Bob Dylan and Joan Baez and soon found himself working for Albert Grossman, Dylan’s manager.
Not long after he went on to work with The Band for several years during their seminal years making their second album, playing Woodstock, Isle of Wight...
The Band: A History sits down with Jan Høiberg, the curator and owner of https://theband.hiof.no, the number one resource for all things Band related. Started in 1994, the website grew to become the official website of The Band. As years passed Jan became friendly with Band members Rick Danko, Levon Helm and Garth Hudson, travelling to Woodstock, New York on several occasions.
Høiberg has run the website from Norway for over twenty-seven years, and his obsession as an eighteen year old kid...
“It took us coming in there to get them all in the studio with one another because there was a lot of bitching” Clapton reminisces about The Band’s state of mind in 1975.
For all the success The Band had, The group was never truly able to become that cohesive group that they once were. Like timeless other examples in other bands, priorities were different, opinions were divided and drugs and alcohol blurred the lines even further.
Would the group be able to put aside their differences...
“Nobody’s done what Bob Dylan’s done for us over the years. He helped Rick and Richard write those songs and was part of our workshop. Bob Dylan knew that The Band was not in great shape, and he wanted to help us out of the sense of goodness he felt for us.”
Pressure was mounting on The Band who hadn't put out a critically acclaimed album in some years, nor were they getting on personally like the once had. With the group calling California home, and setting up in Malibu they established a...
The Band: A History is joined by The Hippie Historian to talk about The Band's steeped history in Southern Ontario. We take you to some of the historic venues they played, the towns and areas in which they lived and much, much more.
Find out more about the road trip and support The Hippie Historian here.
Summer Garden Farewell
The night is chill, the ballroom deserted The sound of dancing feet is gone The sound of music has faded away There is no sound of voices, they have disappeared There...
Even after a few years of meaningless wandering, riddled with substance problems, creative problems The Band, unbeknownst to them, were about to embark on a two year journey that would elevate their profile to the largest they’d ever have. A new album with Dylan, a massive stadium sold out tour and much more.
Was it something they expected, most certainly not, was it something they wanted, besides Robbie probably not, but it was a chance to play with their friend Bob Dylan again and catch...
The Band: A History interviews author Sandra Tooze about her new book Levon Helm: From Down in the Delta to the Birth of The Band and Beyond. Sandra is author of the acclaimed book Muddy Waters: The Mojo Man where she originally interviewed Levon Helm. We discuss Levon's career, spanning his early years, through The Band era and the post-Band era of The Barnburners, Midnight Rambles and more.
Sandra's book comes out August 25, 2020 and you can order is online now.
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Something from the vault! We conducted an interview with Garth Hudson a few years back. This interview mainly details a project I was working on about Richard Manuel, meaning most of the questions pertain to Garth's experiences with Richard Manuel.
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The Band: A History is part of Pantheon Podcasts. Listen to The Band: A History and a variety of other great podcasts over on Pantheon.
When The Band entered the studio to continue to record Moondog Matinee, they switched locations. This time they flew out to Capitol Studios in Los Angeles, California to finish the last few songs. Los Angeles had been pulling The Band westward for sometime. With the rest of an album to finish, The Band couldn't turn down a request from George Harrison and Ringo Starr to help them record in the studio as well.
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"That was all we could do at the time. We couldn't get along—we all knew that fairness was a bunch of shit. We all knew we were getting screwed, so we couldn't sit down and create no more music. 'Up on Cripple Creek' and all that stuff was over—all that collaboration was over, and that” said Levon reflecting on the period just prior to the recording of "Moondog Matinee".
In 1971, "Rock of Ages" had led to an unofficial hiatus for The Band. Independently, The Band worked on various projects...
The Band: A History sits down with famed photographer Elliott Landy to discuss his length career in photography and the time he spent with The Band in their formative years. Landy has since gone on to publish a number of book including his second book about The Band entitled "Elliott Landy: Contacting The Band" which is currently being crowdfunded.
You can find information about "Elliott Landy: Contacting The Band" and support the campaign here.
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“Everybody had been so easily satisfied before and then it got harder to do what we did at ease… The feeling that the group had become what we’d rebelled against… that’s what a lot of the music after The Band was about.'' Robbie Robertson reflected in 1982 on the Rock of Ages period in The Band's history.
It had felt like a while since The Band actually felt like a well oiled unit. Truth be told, The Band’s success was like a mousetrap, it had finally sprung and they were now stuck in more...
In 1993 Rick Danko told The News-Star: "I think we shipped a million copies of that second album and that changed a lot of people’s lives — in particular, the Band’s. After that, we were only getting together once a year, for a couple of months, to record. It was like we were too decadent to play.”
1970 was a hard year, but it wouldn't get any easier in 1971. Having struggled through "Stage Fright" and taking on the disastrous Festival Express music festival, The Band was burnt out and in a...
The Band: A History sits down with "Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band" filmmaker Daniel Roher to discuss the making of his documentary on Robbie Robertson. We discuss Roher's career in the Canadian documentary world, elevating his craft, the luck of landing "Once Were Brothers" and all that went into making the film, from star-studded interviews, Robbie and Levon's feud, Garth's exclusion and much, much more.
You can find information about "Once Were Brothers" and were it is...
Rick Danko stated once: “Those first royalty checks we got almost killed some of us”.
By 1970, The Band was starting to reap the rewards of their first two albums. Remember it has only been two years since the release of “Music From Big Pink”. It may feel like an elongated period of time, but The Band was a workhorse powering through producing an album yearly, while also staying busy on other projects. They were now receiving millions of dollars for the songs they wrote and...
The Band's follow-up self-titled album "The Band" was a success and bigger than their first effort. You'd think they'd slow down and smell the roses, but they didn't. The Band never followed the same path as everyone else and continued to dive deep into recording. Often times as individuals rather than a group, each member spent serious time in 1969 and 1970 working on their friends projects including work for John Martyn, Todd Rundgren, Jesse Winchester and John Simon. However, with the...
We review the new Robbie Robertson documentary "Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band" that just premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival directed by Daniel Roher and executive produced by Martin Scorsese, Ron Howard and Brian Glazer. This shows is part of Pantheon Podcasts.
While The Band had critical success on their first studio effort 1968's "Music From Big Pink" they didn't waste anytime before getting back into the studio to make their follow up. The Band was now respected in their own right apart from Ronnie Hawkins and Bob Dylan. They had the support of a growing fanbase, critics and most importantly musicians like George Harrison and Eric Clapton. However, while The Band were enjoying the frills of a now more luxurious lifestyle that didn't impede on...
The mythical proportion that has graced "Music From Big Pink" has been there since the beginning. By the late sixties, everyone was buzzing about what Dylan and The Band were doing in upstate New York.
"Music From Pink" quaked the music world, it’s profound impact changed the perspective of the largest artists of the day. George Harrison was obsessed, Eric Clapton famously quit Cream and wanted to join The Band. . In an era saturated by fuzzy blues, acid rock and psychedelia, the...