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A Recording Session with Bob Dylan

Happy Traum - Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Just about 40 years ago, in October of 1971, I got a call from Bob Dylan asking me if I'd like record some songs with him for his "Greatest Hits, Volume II" compilation. Could I do it tomorrow, and would I bring my guitar and banjo -- and, oh yeah, how about a bass, too? (Never mind that I didn't own a bass, and had never played one in public before. I borrowed one -- fast.) Read Full Post

A Conversation with Levon Helm and Larry Campbell for Acoustic Guitar Magazine

Happy Traum - Friday, September 18, 2015

It is fitting that the titles of Levon Helm’s two recent solo CDs share a word that defines the essence of his music. Both Dirt Farmer and his just-released Electric Dirt give a listener the undeniable sense that his music comes straight out of the American soil. “My interpretation of Levon’s musical being is that it comes out of the woods, the dirt, the mountains,” says Levon’s producer and multi-instrumentalist Larry Campbell. “It doesn’t come out of bricks and mortar or a Hollywood script. There’s nothing manufactured about it. And from the producing side of this thing, you have to take what a person is naturally and really let that live.” Helm’s earthy tenor, with its Arkansas twang and richly expressive, rough-hewn Southern phrasing, permeates every song on these two albums.  Read Full Post

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