Bad Week For Rock And Roll
[UPDATE: Levon Helm Has Died. Rest In Peace. 4/19/11.]
One of the most iconic voices in rock, Levon Helm, the drummer for The Band, is dying of terminal cancer. He’s the voice that “Pulled into Nazareth, feeling bout half past dead”. He’s the voice that Drove Old Dixie Down. He is the drummer behind Dylan when Dylan went electric.
Levon is in his 70′s now, and fighting throat cancer. His family says he’s in the last stages of the disease, and that it won’t be long. He stayed active, and relevant (4 Grammys after his stint with the Band!) right up until recently. In fact he performed and did an interview with PBS just a few weeks ago.
I’m posting two videos of him performing the song Ophelia. The first is from the Last Waltz (1976), and the last is from February 2012. He’s older, but he still swings, and I can’t believe he still plays drums while singing, into his 8th decade. If you look closely you will see that Donald Fagen is playing piano on this. He always had a top notch band.
Safe journey, Levon Helm.