This is the real deal. Featuring legitimate long time members of The Band, Jim Weider and Randy Ciarlante, along with Marty Grebb (Bonnie Raitt, The Fabulous Rhinestones) Byron Isaacs and Brian Mitchell (Levon Helm Band), The Weight revisits the radio hits and deep tracks from one of America’s most loved and revered musical institutions.
With three of the five original members of The Band now gone, who better than the iconic group’s ‘second generation’ to keep the unique roots-rock sound alive? Jim Weider, who replaced Robbie Robertson on lead guitar in 1985, and Randy Ciarlante, who joined The Band as second drummer to Levon Helm in 1991, are keeping the tradition of one of America’s most beloved musical institutions alive.
Inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1989 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994, additional accolades for The Band include their position at No. 50 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time in 2004. Musically, The Band was lauded for its fusion of many different genres, including most notably old country music and early rock and roll, although their sound was often reminiscent of Motown-style rhythm and blues.
The Weight, named after arguably The Band’s best-known song, are much more than a tribute band. Weider and Ciarlante were there ‘ Weider for 15 years and three original albums. ‘Those were great times. I got to play all over the world and with the best musicians, from Bob Dylan to Crosby Stills and Nash to Roy Buchanan ‘ and you can keep going,’ says Weider.
Jim Weider was a member of the legendary group from 1985 to the end. He not only replaced Robbie Robertson as their lead guitarist, but wrote songs, performed on their three studio albums (Jericho, High on the Hog, Jubilation) and toured internationally with them for fifteen years. As a result he was prominently featured on those records and in their numerous films, videos and television appearances. Jim was also a member of Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble Band and continues to front his own personal group, ProJECT Percolator.
Randy Ciarlante was a member of the second incarnation of The Band. Up until Levon Helm’s passing he also double-drummed with Levon in his Midnight Ramble Band. He played drums alongside Levon and sang on The Band’s albums, circa 1990s, including Jericho, High On The Hog and Jubilation. Randy also leads his own amazing band, ‘CKS’.
Brian Mitchell was also a member of Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble Band and is well-known within the circles of the music industry for his solo career and high-profile collaborations. He has recorded and performed with some of music’s most respected artists. (Bob Dylan, Al Green, B.B. King and countless others).
Byron Isaacs: Also a member of Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble Band, The Dirt Farmer Band and Amy Helm’s band, Ollabelle, Byron is a well-respected singer-songwriter and has written songs that appear on Levon’s Grammy-winning CDs, Dirt Farmer and Electric Dirt.
Marty Grebb is a former member of the Fabulous Rhinestones and also played with the Rick Danko Band, Eric Clapton, Leon Russell, Bonnie Raitt, Etta James, Gregg Allman and Bonnie Bramlett. Marty also wrote songs for The Band and appearing on the Jericho CD.