The Weight Band, featuring former Band member Jim Weider on guitar as well as former Levon Helm Band member Brian Mitchell on keyboards and vocals, specializes in the music of The Band. But the group — which has shows coming up in Newton, Brooklyn and Sellersville, Pa. — focused on original music on its 2018 album, World Gone Mad.
More original material is on its way. But first, the band will release several live albums.
“I’m writing new tunes for a new album,” said Weider on WFDU‘s “Morning Dew” show (listen to the entire interview below). “Until we get the right songs together, I want to release all these (live) albums worldwide.”
Weider — who is joined in The Weight Band by drummer-singer Michael Bram, keyboardist-singer Matt Zeiner and bassist-singer Albert Rogers, in addition to Mitchell — said some of the tracks will come from a location that looms large in Band history: Big Pink. That’s the house in West Saugerties, N.Y., where Band members got the material together for their 1968 debut album, Music From Big Pink, and collaborated with Bob Dylan on songs that were released on the 1975 Bob Dylan & the Band double album, The Basement Tapes.
Weider said that The Weight Band did an acoustic show last year at Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, N.Y., and rehearsed for it at Big Pink.
“We just set up mics and just went through the tunes live,” Weider said on “Morning Dew.” “I said, ‘Let’s record it,’ and they came out so good, I said, ‘This is awesome. Let’s release some of this stuff.’ ”
The Weight Band’s live albums don’t have release dates yet.
Weider said that this week’s shows will be dedicated to Band singer-drummer Helm, who died in 2012 at the age of 71, but would have turned 80 this year.
“Of course, he’s changed all of our lives, and was a real piece of American music history,” said Weider.
The Weight Band will perform at Brooklyn Bowl, Feb. 21; the Newton Theatre, Feb. 22; and the Sellersville Theater in Sellersville, Pa., March 5. All shows are at 8 p.m. For more on the band, visit theweightband.com.
Here is the entire “Morning Dew” interview:
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