photos by Matthew Eisman
At the Beacon Theatre [on Friday, 11/26], Levon was hoarse--at times he seemed to barely be able to talk. However, his band picked up the vocals, with him giving most of his energy to playing the drums and mandolin. At this stage in his career, all Levon Helm has to do is turn and smile at the audience to get a huge reception. He has that much charisma.Levon Helm played Friday and Saturday at Beacon Theater in NYC over Thanksigving weekend. Steve Earle provided support for the first night. Betty Lavette assisted on the second.
The [Bob] Dylan legacy was rich at Friday's concert. Levon was Dylan's oldest former sideman. Larry Campbell, Dylan's former lead guitarist, now plays and sings with Levon. Brian Mitchell, who played keyboard and accordion at the Beacon, can be heard throughout Bob Dylan's version of "Return To Me"... The connections of the music and people go on and on.
Opening and then playing frequently during Levon's set was Steve Earle, a prolific rock and country singer, songwriter and producer. Earle was simply fantastic, especially in a tribute to New Orleans that included This City and Mardi Gras. At Saturday's show, Earle will be replaced by Bettye Lavette. She has some big shoes to fill.-[Frank Beacham's Journal]
"With just acoustic guitar and a little later a a bouzouki, Earle was an objective lesson on how to construct and perform a wow of a show. Steve, looking like a homeless Santa Claus, opened with sure shot "I Feel Alright" and continued with the manifest destiny sneer "You Know The Rest" and two songs later dug deep deep into his back catalogue and pulled out "Someday"." [rock nyc]Hopefully Levon's throat isn't giving him too much trouble. More pictures from the Friday show, below...