Levon Helm, the drummer and baritone vocalist behind The Band has died at the age of 71 after a lengthy battle with cancer. Helm had a distinctly Southern voice that graced some The Band's greatest hits, including "The Weight," "Up on Cripple Creek" and "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down." In the '50s, he joined Ronnie Hawkins' band, which would later include Robbie Robertson, bass player Rick Danko and the keyboard players, Garth Hudson and Richard Manuel. Known as the Hawks, they would eventually get hired to back up Bob Dylan. Though Helm briefly quit the group, he returned and the musicians broke out on their own as The Band. The Band decided to retire and held a star-studded farewell concert that was released as an album and Martin Scorsese-directed film called "The Last Waltz."
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