The Last Waltz (1978 album)
|The Last Waltz|
|Soundtrack album by The Band|
|Released||April 7, 1978|
|Recorded||November 25, 1976
Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA
|The Band chronology|
|Rolling Stone||(not rated)|
|The Rolling Stone Album Guide|||
The Last Waltz is a triple album by the Band, released on Warner Bros. Records in 1978, catalogue 3WS 3146. It is the soundtrack to the 1978 film of the same name, and the final album by the original configuration of the Band. It peaked at #16 on the Billboard 200.
The triple-album documents the Band's "farewell" concert which took place at Bill Graham's Winterland Ballroom on Thanksgiving Day 1976. The event included an actual Thanksgiving dinner for 5000 attendees, with ballroom dancing and a stage set for La Traviata borrowed from the San Francisco Opera.
The concert featured songs by the Band interspersed with the group backing up a variety of musical guests. These included many with whom they had worked in the past, notably their previous employers Ronnie Hawkins and Bob Dylan. Van Morrison, a Woodstock neighbor, had co-written and sung on the track "4% Pantomime" for the Cahoots album. Individual members of the Band had played with the invitees on the following albums: in 1972 with Bobby Charles for his eponymous album; in 1973 with Ringo Starr on Ringo; in 1974 with Joni Mitchell on Court and Spark and with Neil Young for On the Beach; in 1975 with Muddy Waters and Paul Butterfield on The Muddy Waters Woodstock Album; in 1976 with Eric Clapton on No Reason to Cry and with Neil Diamond on Beautiful Noise.
Sides one through five of the album consisted of songs taken from the concert. Side six comprised "The Last Waltz Suite," new numbers composed by Robertson and performed by the Band on an MGM soundstage. The suite featured Emmylou Harris and, on a remake of "The Weight," Roebuck and Mavis Staples. The music received overdubs at Village Recorders and Shangri-La Studios in post-production, owing to faults recorded during the concert.
The performance of "Helpless" by Neil Young features backing vocals by Joni Mitchell; Paul Butterfield plays harmonica for Muddy Waters on "Mannish Boy;" Dr. John plays congas on "Coyote" and plays guitar on "Down South in New Orleans;" the entire ensemble sings back-up on the closer, "I Shall Be Released."
- Side one
|1.||"Theme from The Last Waltz"||Robbie Robertson||3:28|
|2.||"Up on Cripple Creek"||Robertson||Levon Helm||4:44|
|3.||"Who Do You Love?"||Ellas McDaniel||Ronnie Hawkins||4:16|
|5.||"Stage Fright"||Robertson||Rick Danko||4:25|
- Side two
|2.||"Dry Your Eyes"||Diamond, Robertson||Neil Diamond||3:57|
|3.||"It Makes No Difference"||Robertson||Rick Danko||6:48|
|4.||"Such a Night"||Mac Rebennack||Dr. John||4:00|
- Side three
|1.||"The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down"||Robertson||Levon Helm||4:34|
|2.||"Mystery Train"||Junior Parker, Sam Phillips||Paul Butterfield, Levon Helm||4:59|
|3.||"Mannish Boy"||Mel London, McDaniel, McKinley Morganfield||Muddy Waters||6:54|
|4.||"Further on Up the Road"||Robey, Veasey||Eric Clapton||5:08|
- Side four
|1.||"The Shape I'm In"||Robertson||Richard Manuel||4:06|
|2.||"Down South in New Orleans"||J. Wright, J. Anglin||Bobby Charles, Dr. John||3:06|
|4.||"Tura Lura Lural (That's An Irish Lullaby)"||Shannon||Van Morrison, Richard Manuel||4:15|
- Side five
|1.||"Life Is a Carnival"||Danko, Helm, Robertson||Levon Helm, Rick Danko||4:32|
|2.||"Baby, Let Me Follow You Down"||Reverend Gary Davis, Rick von Schmidt||Bob Dylan||3:00|
|3.||"I Don't Believe You"||Dylan||Bob Dylan||3:23|
|4.||"Forever Young"||Dylan||Bob Dylan||4:42|
|5.||"Baby, Let Me Follow You Down (Reprise)"||Davis, von Schmidt||Bob Dylan||2:46|
|6.||"I Shall Be Released"||Dylan||Bob Dylan, Richard Manuel||6:22|
- Side six
"The Last Waltz Suite" written by Robbie Robertson.
|1.||"The Well"||Richard Manuel||3:27|
|2.||"Evangeline"||Rick Danko, Emmylou Harris, Levon Helm||3:17|
|3.||"Out of the Blue"||Robbie Robertson||3:03|
|4.||"The Weight"||Levon Helm, Mavis Staples, Pops Staples, Rick Danko||4:38|
|5.||"The Last Waltz Refrain"||Richard Manuel, Robbie Robertson||1:28|
|6.||"Theme from The Last Waltz"||3:22|
- Rick Danko – bass, fiddle, vocals
- Levon Helm – drums, mandolin, vocals
- Garth Hudson – organ, accordion, synthesizer, saxophones
- Richard Manuel – piano, drums, organ, clavinet, dobro, vocals
- Robbie Robertson – guitars, piano, vocals
The horn section
- Rich Cooper – trumpet, flugelhorn
- James Gordon – flute, tenor saxophone, clarinet
- Jerry Hey – trumpet, flugelhorn
- Howard Johnson – tuba, baritone saxophone, flugelhorn, bass clarinet
- Charlie Keagle – clarinet, flute, alto, tenor and soprano saxophones
- Tom Malone – trombone, euphonium, alto flute, bass trombone
- Larry Packer – electric violin
- Horns arranged by Henry Glover, Garth Hudson, Howard Johnson, Tom Malone, John Simon and Allen Toussaint
- Robbie Robertson – producer
- John Simon - producer, string arrangements
- Rob Fraboni – producer
- Ed Anderson – recording and mixing engineer
- Terry Becker, Neil Brody, Tim Kramer, Elliot Mazer and Wayne Neuendorf – recording engineers
- Baker Bigsby, Tony Bustos and Jeremy Zatkin – mixing engineers
- Bill Graham – concert production
- The Last Waltz (1978 album) at AllMusic
- Rolling Stone
- Brackett, Nathan, with Hoard, Christian (eds) (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th edn). New York, NY: Fireside. p. 42. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
- Orr, John. "The Last Waltz" article from The Band Website retrieved 20-11-10.
- Orr, as above.
- The Last Waltz, original vinyl issue, sleeve notes.