The Golden Notebook presents Whispering Pines: The Band, Woodstock, and the 40th Anniversary of the Last Waltz, an event celebrating the Hudson Valley’s most famous musical sons.
The celebration takes place at 6 p.m. Saturday, November 26 at the Kleinert/James Center for the Performing Arts, 36 Tinker Street, Woodstock
The celebration will feature a reading and book signing by Chronogram music editor Peter Aaron of his new work, The Band FAQ — All That’s Left To Know About The Fathers Of Americana. Conversation and remembrances with the great photographer Elliott Landy and folk guitar picker and Band friend Happy Traum will be heard, as well as live Band music by Mike & Ruthy and Connor Kennedy and Minstrel.
As the 40th Anniversary of the Band’s famous final concert (in its original lineup) arrives, much material is at hand pertaining to the musicians, their relationships to one another and Woodstock, and their importance and influence in the musical world.
“It was a monumental task, trying to have something in there not too similar to other Band books that are out there,” says Aaron, about his new volume. He cited Levon Helm’s Wheels on Fire; two by Barney Hoskyns — Across the Great Divide, and his recent Small Town Talk, about Dylan, Woodstock and The Band. “I try to bring some of my own perspectives to certain facets of The Band, connected with their story,” he says. “There’s a chapter on the Levon and the Hawks period, sort of a forgotten period after they left Ronnie Hawkins and before Dylan. It was kind of their garage rock period…they were living their own parallel existence to it, but of it.”
Aaron, who also is the author of If You Like the Ramones and has written for the Village Voice and the Boston Herald has done one reading in Hudson for The Band FAQ thus far.
“People seemed moved by it. I was encouraged by it. It took over my life for a little more than a year. You’re just kind of in your garret and you don’t know what the outside world is going to think of it. Obviously being here, I want to give love back to the area and the people and places that were connected with The Band. Hopefully that will be felt.”
His love for the music is clear in his writing and his choices, as he picks what he feels to be The Band’s greatest tracks and gives clear eyed appraisals of their recording work.
“They really swung and most rock bands do not swing,” he says. They had three incredible singers. And as great as the Beatles were, who can sing like Richard Manuel…”
Admission is free. For more information, call 845-679-8000 or see www.goldennotebook.com/.