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My thoughts on Levon Helm’s passing

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April 23, 2012 by Benji


Over the weekend we all got the news that Levon Helm passed away. I was not sure why it was weighing heavily on me, but it has been. So I’ve been thinking about why that is.  When the likes of Jerry Garcia and Kurt Cobain passed, I was too young to appreciate the impact, I wasnt even alive when John Lennon passed. Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson had no significant impact on my life. But Levon is the first musician who has been influencitail in my life and has has consistently influenced me who has passed away since I matuered enough to understand the severity.

I never met the man, but his loving smile and kind demeanor shined through the hundreds of pictures and videos I’ve seen. He played simple american music impeccably, always throwing in his little riffs and accents to remind you what a voice in music sounds like.

When Levon got sick a few years back, and was unable to sing, I remember feeling like his songs would always feel like something was missing without his singing. Hearing him sing post cancer has been inspirational. All the covers I have been hearing have been spectacular. Nothing is missing. Levon is living through the music he infected us with.

Lastly, Amy Helm is one of the lucky few musicians who got to play music with her parent, and did so well. In the last few years I have had the privilege to play my fathers music with him as part of the band The Kosher Gravy Co. I think Amy’s story in this pulls my heartstrings.

A few years ago the Detroit music scene lost one of its own. At a benefit concert we did for his son The Weight was covered. Here is it.

God bless Amy (his Daughter ) and Sandy (his Wife)

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