Once the backing group to the iconic Bob Dylan, The Band was one of the most beloved groups of their time and still looms large in the realms of classic rock and Americana today. Made up of Levon Helm, Robbie Robertston, Rick Danko, Garth Hudson and Richard Manuel, The Band’s shelf live was relatively short, a mere 12 years, but their legacy has remained unblemished, having left their mark with albums like their self-entitled work, The Band, Music from Big Pink, as well as the live album Rock Of Ages.
43 years ago today, The Band took to Bill Graham’s Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco to play a true farewell concert. Complete with an actual Thanksgiving dinner for the 5,000 in attendance, The Last Waltz was turned into a brilliant documentary/concert film by director Martin Scorsese and released two years later in 1978. And talk about a list of musical guests! It was a virtual who’s who amongst the era’s greatest performances, including Ronnie Hawkins, Dr. John, Paul Butterfield, Muddy Waters, Eric Clapton, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Ringo Starr, Neil Diamond, Van Morrison, Allen Toussaint, Ron Wood, and of course, the voice of a generation, Bob Dylan.
Let us now take a look back and remember The Band’s Last Waltz with video from the night’s festivities below:
The Band – The Last Waltz Show – 11/25/76 – Part 1
The Band – The Last Waltz Show – 11/25/76 – Part 3
[Originally published 11/25/16]