The Last Waltz

The Last Waltz

The Last Waltz has earned its rightful place as one of rock 'n' roll's most important films. The soundtrack album is equally blessed, with performances that have acquired legendary status. It started as a farewell to The Band, which was to play its final concert at Bill Graham's Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco on Thanksgiving 1976. The guest list turned the concert into one for the ages. The Band's early mentor Ronnie Hawkins chews up "Who Do You Love." Dr. John brings his New Orleans magic to "Such a Night." Muddy Waters proves that being an elder statesman doesn't mean losing a lick of vitality on "Mannish Boy." Van Morrison turns in a ferocious "Caravan" and a touching and dynamic "Tura Lura Lura." Neil Young hangs on for dear life with a vulnerable "Helpless." The Band, of course, charges forth with a strong "It Makes No Difference" and stellar versions of its classics "Up on Cripple Creek" and "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," with singer/drummer Levon Helm sounding like he's out to prove Robbie Robertson wrong in breaking up the group. Bob Dylan sends things over the top with a brutal electric version of "Baby, Let Me Follow You Down."

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