The Levon Helm Band: The Midnight Ramble Sessions Volume 3
Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble sessions, held in his Woodstock, N.Y., barn are legendary, with a who’s-who of top musicians “dropping by” to jam alongside The Levon Helm Band. Compiled shortly before Helm’s 2012 death, Volume 3 arrives with an eclectic baker’s dozen of performances, spanning 2005 to 2010, positioned in true Ramble style—opening and closing in upbeat fashion, with a stellar acoustic breather in the middle. Guests include Chris Robinson, Elvis Costello and Allen Toussaint, among others, and include tracks by Bob Dylan (“Simple Twist of Fate”), Larry Campbell (“I’m a Jealous Man”), Al Green (“Take Me to the River”—sung by Helm) and Blind Willie Johnson (“God Don’t Never Change”). A few Helm-composed numbers are rightfully included, in this case, “Drivin’ Wheel,” “One More Shot” and “The Same Thing.” In Volume 3, there’s no denying the joy with which Helm played music.