R.I.P. #LEVON HELM!
The famous American VOCALIST and DRUMMER for the BAND,has died of a long Throat-Cancer in NY.He was 71.
‘THE NIGHT THEY DROVE DIXIE DOWN’, ‘UP ON THE CRIPPLE CREEK’, ‘THE WEIGHT’ are his all-time great numbers!
Born in Arkansas,US, Levon grew up in a very musical-environ ment and had learned to play all the major musical instruments duringhis teenage.
He joined the then famous musician From Canada, Ronnie Hawkins at New Jersey n had perfected the art of playing drumsfor Hawkins’ band : HAWKS!
Levon met his future band mates during his tenure with the HAWKS:Robbie Robertson,Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel n others with whom he formed a new band when they parted with Ronnie Hawkins.
Later they were spotted by BOB DYLAN whom Levon had not muchidea about except that someone named BOB DYLAN was a folksinger- -Levon recalls that in his memoir : THE WHEEL’S ON FIRE!
DYLAN noticed Levon n his band mates in a club and had invited them to play for his electric-tour (When he switched to the new form of electric-instru ments) that unfortunately came at the receiving-end of Boo-ings n Jeer-ings at Forest Hills,NY and turned into a big embarrassment for Bob Dylan.
Levon n his friends had to leave Dylan and they started their own group named ‘BAND’ that started a countrywide tours in 1967 n had been a huge sensation acrossthe States.
After a successful decade that sawthem re-uniting with Dylan, there was a near-consensus to end the group or to Disband the Band n despite Levon’s thinking otherwise,the Band came to its end with a Farewell Performance in 1976 in San Francisco!
It was later revealed by Levon in his memoir that the event happened due to the excessive insistence of Robertson and that he(Levon) couldn’t be the same again with Robertson.The Lyrics were mostly penned by Robbie Robertson who used to play guitar in the Band.
Levon,along with his two other old group-members kept performing till 1999.
He became alone in 1999 as one of his friend committed suicide n the other passed away that year!
Levon had throat-cancer in late nineties n had undergone 28 radiation-thera py that helped him regain his voice that was famous for his Mississippi-Del ta’s drawl!
Levon kept his singing at Woodstock in most part of this century and named that ‘MIDNIGHT RAMBLE’. .He along withhis daughter Amy kept the music alive just to manage for his medical bills.
He recorded some notable numbers during these years and one of them was DIRT FARMER that won one Grammys in 2007.His other two scores from this period won Grammys in 2009n 2011.
LEVON was also an actor n had 12films to his credit: most notable was the 1980’s Oscar winning ‘COAL MINER’S DAUGHTER’.His last acting role was in more recently Mark Wahlberg’s ‘SHOOTER’.
LEVON HELM IS NO MORE,YET LIVES THROUGH HIS MUSIC!
MAY GOD BLESS HIS SOUL!
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LEVON HELM, THE FAMOUS AMERICAN VOCALIST AND DRUMMER HAS DIED AT 71.
R.I.P. #LEVON HELM!