Watched this last night, or at least most of it.
And am ready to watch it again.
I'm a little too young to have been intimately familiar with The Band during my youth, and now, because of this film, I'm sorry for that and therefore can feel a full-on obsession starting up. I want to know MORE, and right now, thankssomuchforasking.
Because, hello? These guys rocked! Yes, I know, they were hooked up with Mr. Bob Dylan for a period of time, for which I must forgive them, but golly day, y'all, the SONGS! "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," "Up on Cripple Creek," "I Shall Be Released," "The Shape I'm In," etc etc etc. The songs, and the singers, and their guests, make this a fine, fine film....
In all honesty, I could have done without many of the other artists and performers who took part (I'm looking at you, Mr. Neil Diamond), except that, well, Neil Young did a pretty fine job with his tune and Joni Mitchell was there running along like she does and Dr. John looked sweet in his pink bowtie and Muddy Waters was in full-on yowl and smoke form and Eric Clapton's nose in profile is something to behold. Almost all of it was delicious to hear AND see.
It's a crying shame that they just don't make music like that anymore.
Or do they?
I subscribe to a magazine called Americana Rhythm, a "local" paper that focuses on American music in the Shenadoah Valley and surrounding areas, and I think they're onto something. The mag is filled to bursting with all kinds of musicians and interviews and show dates and festival announcements, and I'm sure that in there somewhere there must be a band like The Band, who are waiting for their moment to arrive. Amidst all the bluegrass and folk, there must be some group of people who are bursting at the seams with music that defies description, who can toss out melodies with gravelly voices and change up singers at a moment's notice to suit the song and who can switch from drums to mandolin or from fretless bass to standup bass if they need to and pour out earnest passion into the mic and crowd.
And, watch out, because when I find them, they're mine. I will learn all the words to their songs and pretend to sing backup with them while I'm driving to work and buy their CDs and tickets to their shows and take my kids to see them. I will immerse myself, like I did when I first heard Little Feat and Nancy Griffiths and Joni Mitchell.
It will be wonderful to discover something new.
I'm not terribly picky about music, but prefer and gravitate to Southern Rock and jazz when I want a lift. Even classical music, which once was my LIFE, is a little irritating unless I can find time to listen to a whole piece. But hey, put on some David Bromberg or Lynrd Skynyrd or Wynton Marsalis or David Grisman or Charlie Parker or Grateful Dead and I'm pretty darned happy about life.
You can forget hip-hop - I tried it and it didn't resonate with me. You can forget top 40, because I'm not 14 anymore. You can forget heavy metal, unless it's been a really frustrating day. You can forget emo, because I have enough angst in my life. Industrial = small doses are OK. Punk = fine for when I'm high-energy. Disco = not anymore. 80's = when I'm nostalgic, and only for three songs.
I'll listen to almost anything for a little while, but only a few things for a lotta while.
Which prompts me to ask - what kind of music really gets YOU going, and why?