The Band‘s appearance on the 1970’s syndicated radio show, KBFH, is a bootleg recording deserving a spot in everyone’s collection. Captured during their final year together in 1976, it serves as another historical document why these 4 Canadians (Rick Danko, Garth Hudson, Robbie Robertson, Richard Manuel) and 1 American (Levon Helm) should be celebrated for their versatile musicianship in the studio or on the road, as well as their overwhelming influence on modern American music.
Each member shines on this live recording but for my money (and my Sunday Jams), the late Rick Danko’s vocal on It Makes No Difference—steering towards Garth Hudson’s sax solo (after spending the majority of the song twirling around the organ)—gives me goosebumps each time. Richard Manuel’s Tears of Rage, a song he co-wrote with Dylan, you can hear the road has taken its toll but The Band, knowing the end of their collective existence is near, carries him—as they once did for everyone else.
The Band’s session for KBFH is a live bootleg recording worthy of an’official release’ in any format. Fortunately for music fans, it’s outlasted various formats 35 years and running.