The Band, the Canadian-American rock group formed in 1967 consisting of Rick Danko, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel, Robbie Robertson, and Levon Helm remains one of the most influential rock bands in the world to this day. Their music combined elements of Americana, folk, rock, jazz, country, and R&B influencing subsequent musicians such as the Eagles, Elton John, the Grateful Dead, the Black Crowes, Wilco and countless others.
Music critic Bruce Eder described the Band as "one of the most popular and influential rock groups in the world, their music embraced by critics ... as seriously as the music of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones". The Band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994, in 2004 they were ranked 50 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest artists of all time while ranking "The Weight" 41st on its list of the 500 greatest songs of all time. In 2008, the group received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Earlier this year The Band celebrated the 50th anniversary of their third album, Stage Fright, with a massive box set featuring a trove of new material including a previously-unreleased show from London’s Royal Albert Hall on June 2nd, 1971. This concert found The Band at the top of their game on a European tour as they cruised through passionate takes on many of their hits from Stage Fright and before like “The Shape I’m In”, “The Weight”, “I Shall Be Released”, “Up On Cripple Creek” and “Chest Fever”.
The previous time the Band had played at that austere venue, in 1966, they were known as the Hawks and were backing Bob Dylan on his controversial European tour. The last two shows of the tour took place at the hall, where, as at other shows, some in the audience were less than thrilled by the sound of Dylan backed by a plugged-in band — and let their frustrations be known by way of booing and yelling.
By 1971, though, things had changed: “The Hawks had been booed there last time out,” wrote Levon Helm in his memoir This Wheel’s on Fire. “Not this time. Take my word for it — pandemonium. They were on their feet and dancing from the first notes.”
"Everybody was on their game" said Robbie Robertson. "And it was such a great relief to come back to Albert Hall from the last experience of playing with Bob there. [Laughs] When we played with Bob, we were on a ridiculous schedule on tour. I’m amazed that Bob, you know, could even pull it off physically. This time, the crowd was just over the top on enthusiasm and we were trying to give it back to them."
"I just like the energy. The way we were playing that at that concert was something I’m so proud of. We just wanted to go out there and play, and play music as good as anybody. That was the job of the Band: to show up, get behind that instrument, and do magic. And hearing the Albert Hall concert now, after all these years, I say to myself, “Yeah, that’s it.” We had these high points, and Albert Hall is definitely one of them right now." Robertson recently told Rolling Stone.
Not only are we thrilled to be co-releasing this print with The Band through their official store, but Robbie Robertson will be signing 10 of these prints which will be included in random orders! We are also thrilled to have Dan Black from LandLand work with us on this historic project by illustrating the art!
The Band Royal Albert Hall 50th Anniversary - $75.00
Artist: Dan Black/LandLand
Size: 18" x 24"
Edition Size: 200
Hand Signed and Numbered by Dan Black
Holographic sticker on back of print for authenticity