LIVE: Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble, 1/22/11

January 27th, 2011, 10:56 am by Greg

Levon Helm Midnight Ramble Set Lists

Ironically, Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble doesn’t start at 12midnight. Doors open around 6pm, and patrons get there as early as possible to reserve the best seating, or most often, the best standing room in the house, which at its furthest, is only 30 or so feet away.

Held in the legendary singer-drummer’s home/recording studio, about 200 guests crowded in to get as close as possible to one of the three remaining members of The Band. The show kindles a kind of intimate atmosphere that is rendered by the fact that you are literally in Levon Helm’s house, beneath vaulted ceilings and long wooden beams, where the garage serves as a storefront and the bathrooms have real showers in them.

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Feats, Don’t Fail Me Now!

April 16th, 2010, 10:23 am by Greg

Levon Helm DrumkitFile this one under: Musicians Helping Musicians.

Richie Hayward, the longtime drummer with one of the funkiest rock bands on the planet – Little Feat – was recently diagnosed with liver cancer.

One of the fabulous folks coming to Hayward’s aid in his time of need is Woodstock’s own drum master, Levon Helm.

Helm is raffling off an autographed Yamaha Recording Custom 20th Anniversary Four-Piece Drum Set. The kit is owned and was played by Helm during the 1990s. According to Helm, “This drum kit is in excellent condition and comes with hardware, stands and cases.” And, yes, it’s autographed by Levon Helm.

Go to Levon Helm’s website for more info.

Only 500 raffle tickets are being offered at $250 each. And all proceeds will go directly to Richie Hayward.

Yeah, it’s a pricey raffle ticket. But the prize is priceless. And it’s all for a good cause. Raffle tickets are available online starting today (April 15). The winner will be drawn by Levon at his Midnight Ramble at 12midnight on Saturday, May 22.

If you know anyone who you think might be interested, please help spread the word.

LIVE: Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble, 3/20/10

April 2nd, 2010, 12:01 pm by Greg

Levon Helm

If you’re a music fan who lives in the Capital District, you owe it to yourself to head south to Woodstock to attend one of Levon Helm’s coveted and famed Midnight Rambles. Yes, it’s a steep ticket price – $150 – but most folks who have attended a Ramble tend to break out in a mile-wide smile as they excitedly recall a truly unique musical experience – perhaps even one of the most memorable concerts of their lifetime.

The schedule of special guests who will be performing along with Helm at his upcoming Rambles are posted on his website. But with every show there is always the element of the unknown: meaning that some legendary musician might just drop by to sit in with the band.

Last summer, Helm had a serious health scare when doctors suspected a return of the throat cancer that had previously sidelined the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer. Fortunately, it was a misdiagnosis, and with the removal of a non-malignant tumor, Helm is singing once again, his yearning backwoods voice set against his sturdy backbeat drumming, as he leads his Saturday night Midnight Rambles in the comfy confines of his home studio. And he’s made plans to take the Ramble on the road again this summer, too.

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NEWS FLASH! Special Edition of Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble

November 14th, 2009, 12:02 pm by Greg

Don’t know if you’ve ever been to one of Levon Helm’s Midnight Rambles. They’re on Saturday nights. In Woodstock. In Levon’s studio/barn. And they are as cozy as can be.

I’ve only been to one of ’em. A couple of weeks ago. Levon Helm and his band rattled the rafters in the oh-so-intimate living room-like setting. Rodney Crowell just happened to drop in to sing a handful of songs with Helm and the band. And the opening act was Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels. Here’s my review.

My mind is still reeling.

I can’t really explain in words how cool, how exciting, how downright mindblowing that night of music was.

I know that the Ramble is an expensive ticket at $150 a pop, but it really was worth it.

This week’s Ramble features special guest popmeister Marshall Crenshaw and the acoustic blues duo of Little Sammy Davis & Fred Scribner at 7:30pm tonight (Saturday, November 14).

But here’s some late-breaking news! Levon has added a special Sunday night Ramble to the calendar for tomorrow night, Sunday, November 15. In addition to the Levon Helm Band, the slate of special guest performers includes Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Payne, Guy Forsyth, Connie Nelson, Hubert Sumlin and more. The gates open at 6pm, and the show starts at 7pm. And for this special Sunday night Ramble, tickets are just $100.

LIVE: Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble, 10/10/09

October 14th, 2009, 8:35 am by Greg


I’d never been to one of Levon Helm‘s Saturday night Midnight Rambles at his home/recording studio in Woodstock, but over the years I’d heard lots about them. I knew it would be fun, but I never realized just how much fun.

Intimate? It really was like standing around in somebody’s living room and watching a world-class band crank out some of their favorite songs. For more than two hours, I stood no more than 15 feet away from Levon Helm as he churned through some of the funkiest backbeats I’ve ever heard. I was begoggled.

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Woodstock vets still alive & kickin’

August 12th, 2009, 1:29 pm by Greg

Max Yasgur's farm today (photo by Rick Bedrosian)

Max Yasgur's farm today (photo by Rick Bedrosian)

Four decades ago, they were all gathered at a farm in Bethel.

And now, many of those same musicians are continuing to spread the word – or at least, the music.

Here’s where you can catch some of the original 1969 Woodstock festival alums in action these days:

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8/4: Pluggin in, chillin out

August 4th, 2009, 1:13 pm by Greg

Every once in a while you’ve got to take a break and just chill out at home for an evening. And it would seem that tonight might be as good a day as any this week, especially considering the back-to-back music specials lined up on WMHT-TV:

8pm: “Levon Helm: Ramble at the Ryman” with such special guests as John Hiatt, Buddy Miller and Sam Bush

9pm: “Leonard Cohen: Live in London”

Ramble on, Levon

July 1st, 2009, 9:15 am by Greg

Celebrating the release of his new album “Electric Dirt” this week, Levon Helm is hitting the road a little more than usual to support the new CD. This summer he’s touring with the Black Crowes.

And he’ll make a stop at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts on Saturday, August 15, joining Jefferson Starship, Ten Years After, Canned Heat, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Mountain, Tom Constanten and Country Joe McDonald for the Heroes of Woodstock concert.

But he’s still hosting those Saturday night Levon Helm Midnight Rambles at his home studio in Woodstock whenever he can. Tickets are a little pricey – $150 – but you’ll likely never get more up-close-and-personal with abona fide Rock & Roll Hall of Famer and his band.

Tickets usually sell out pretty fast, but there are still tix available for many of the summer shows. Of course, Levon and his band perform, as well as at least one special guest performer.

Here’s the summer schedule:

July 4: With Jimmy Vivino and his band. SOLD OUT
July 11: With Arlen Roth
July 18: With John Simon. SOLD OUT
August 1: With Bow Thayer & Perfect Trainwreck
August 8: With the Rowan Brothers
August 22: With Robbie Dupree
September 5: With the Chris Bergson Band
September 19: With Cleve and Sweet Mary

(Thanks, AndyG!)

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