Life Is a Carnival

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"Life is a Carnival"
Dutch cover
Single by The Band
from the album Cahoots
B-side "The Moon Struck One"
Released 1971
Format 7"
Recorded Early 1971
Genre Roots rock, Americana
Length 3:50
Label Capitol Records
Writer(s) Levon Helm, Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko
Producer(s) The Band

"Life is a Carnival" is the opening track of The Band's fourth album, Cahoots. Written by Rick Danko, Levon Helm, and Robbie Robertson, the song features horn arrangements by New Orleans musician Allen Toussaint. The song is the only track from the Cahoots album included on the original releases of both the Rock of Ages album and The Last Waltz box set. The song was featured in the Bill Murray movie Larger Than Life.

Musical notation for this song is printed on a wall behind Levon Helm's grave in Woodstock, New York.


Hon players uncredited; horn arrangements by Allen Toussaint.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1971) Peak
Canadian RPM Singles Chart[2] 25
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 72