Top 10 Deep Cuts, lesser known, from The Band, the group of superb instrumentalists and real voices that cut to the bone.
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The Band’s breakout album Music From Big Pink was a revelation. First of all, the good-looker guy Robbie Robertson was one hell of a guitar player and a decent singer, which should have meant he sang all the tunes, right? But The Band’s secret weapon was that they had several outstanding singers. Damned if the drummer Levon Helm didn’t sing up a storm, and any drummer will tell you that playing the sticks and singing lead vocal at the same time is well nigh an impossible task. As for Richard Manuel, pianist and multi-instrumentalist, he was one hell of a madman on stage with a vocal range that was surprising; back in Canada they called him the white Ray Charles. Then there’s bassist Rick Danko, a heartbreaker of a singer. Garth Hudson? – a classically trained organist who could really rock it out.

Here are 10 Deep Cuts from The Band, a group that for my money was one of the greatest of all time.

1.‘King Harvest’ (alternate take, HD sound)

2. ‘The Shape I’m In’ from The Last Waltz

3. ‘Stage Fright” sung by the incomparable Rick Danko, performed here live

4. ‘Chest Fever’ from Music From Big Pink – bone-chilling organ from Garth Hudson, powerhouse drumming from Levon Helm

5. ‘Jawbone’ from The Band – featuring that beloved madman Richard Manuel on vocals, written by Manuel. Country rock at its best.

6. ‘Rag Mama Rag’ from The Last Waltz

7. ‘Long Black Veil’ sung by Rick Danko on Music from Big Pink

8. ‘Don’t Do It’ live, sung by Levon Helm, 1971

9. ‘When I Paint My Masterpiece’ from Rock of Ages – written by Bob Dylan

10. ‘Acadian Driftwood’ – a lesser known but truly beautiful cut from Northern Lights – Southern Cross

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