Song of the Day: “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” by The Band

Robbie Robertson was the lead guitarist and a primary songwriter for a band he started in 1961 with Levon Helm called The Hawks, who went on to back up Bob Dylan and change their name to The Band. “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” appeared on their second album as a band, a self-titled disc that followed up their non-backing band debut, Music From Big Pink. The Civil War-set tune, written by Robertson and sung by Helm, was released as a double-A single with “Up On Cripple Creek” following the album’s 1969 release.

Robertson, the last living of the founding members of The Band, turned 74 years old today.

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