"The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down".


I am very fortunate in having heard this amazing song performed live by The Band on their tour in support of the s/t "brown" album. The only other live music experience I’ve had that equals it was hearing Little Village perform John Hiatt’s "Lipstick Traces" on a soundstage in Burbank in ’92. The Little Village album was not so hot, but they sure were!

The Beatles? Saw them in ’65. Hendrix? Saw him in ’68 and ’69. Cream? Saw them in ’67 and ’68. The Who? Saw them in ’68 and ’69. Who else ya wanna name? Sorry, hearing The Band live spoiled me for just about EVERYONE else. Not Iris DeMent, whom I just saw this past Thursday. Stunningly great!


Here’s J.R. Robertson, Eric Levon Helm, and some other guy talking about the song and its’ creation:






@gjohns: Mine too. "The Weight" is in my top 5 or so songs of all-time. One of Robertson's best songs was at the other end of their career: "It Makes No Difference", sung by bassist Rick Danko.

The controversy about TNTDODD is in its' view of the Civil War from the perspective of a Southerner. You would know that if you actually watched the linked video!

If you guys don't know what I'm talking about (and I really doubt that) then the world is a better place.


@stuartk: Your comments about Hiatt’s Slow Turning album ("It’s too bad that same group didn’t click when they went into the studio to record Slow Turning") seems to imply that it---like Bring The Family---was recorded with Ry Cooder, Nick Lowe, and Jim Keltner as the backing band. But I think you know that was not the case.

I know how you feel about the Slow Turning album, as that was also my initial reaction to it: mild disappointment. I have however grown to love it, starting when I saw John and the players on the album perform it live at The Roxy Theater on Sunset Blvd. While no one compares to Cooder on slide guitar, Sonny Landreth is no slouch! Sonny’s later solo albums contain fine music as well

I also saw Hiatt and his band perform the Perfectly Good Guitar album, and it too was fantastic. The problem with creating an album as good as Bring The Family is, how do you follow it up? Everything else you do will be compared to it.