Watch The Band play on Saturday at the Ivy Ballroom in the second performance of Salida’s Next Last Waltz this Saturday, Nov. 30.
The holidays are a time of traditions. You might spend Christmas watching classic yuletide films like “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Home Alone” or “Eyes Wide Shut.”
For Turkey Day, you might veg out and watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and some football. Or, if you’re cool, you watch “The Last Waltz.”
That show, the final live performance by the confidently-named Canadian rock group The Band took place on Thanksgiving day in 1976 at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco and was immortalized in a film of the same name by Martin Scorsese released a few years later.
The Band played not only its own songs, but acted as the backing band to a revolving cast of artists like Van Morrison, Neil Young, Emmylou Harris, Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan.
Now in its third year, Salida’s Next Last Waltz will bring together 32 Upper Arkansas Valley musicians to recreate that legendary concert.
“People don’t know that it was almost a 4-hour show,” said Chris Nasca, who plays guitar in the show. “It covered all kind of genres. You had Dr. John … you have Eric Clapton, of course Ringo Starr was there, Ron Wood (of the Rolling Stones), Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Muddy Waters. Some great, great musicians. It covered a gamut of lots of different styles of music … They highlighted all their heroes. That was the whole point of that Last Waltz. They wanted to celebrate their big bang of going out with all of these people.”
After 2 years of selling out performances at the Salida SteamPlant, 2019 will be the first year that the show plays in Buena Vista as well.
Tickets are already sold out for the SteamPlant shows on the 27th and 29th.
The “First Last Waltz” in 2017 sold out in 6 days in Salida, while the 2018 event sold out in a matter of hours, according to the Mountain Mail.
Nasca said that paying tribute to the Last Waltz is “a national event, maybe even international,” and that Scorcese’s film had become something of a cult classic. Chaffee County’s version “came through George Mossman, myself, Bones (real name Trevor Davis) and Lindsey Sutton.
“George and I have been buddies for 30 years, and we’ve been talking about this, and we finally got the players together for this event about 3 years ago and started woodshedding and learning stuff in September of 2017 … we just did one night and it sold out immediately.”
Percussionists Mossman and Bones, guitarist Chris Nasca, guitarist Stew Pappenfort, bassist Aaron Robbins, trumpeter Kerry Walsh, Ernie Hatfield, Shawn Waggoner, Chris Hudson, percussionist Tami Sheppard, Duke Sheppard, fiddler Andrea Coen, Matthew Coen, Peter Mossman, Carey Nall, T.J. Hittle, Deke Rushton, Jimmy Luchetta, percussionist Oso Blanco, Andre Wilkens, Mark Hanson, Bonnie Culpepper, Mont Brown, Alex Johnstone, Ruth Hein, Mark Minor, Brother Rob, Cary Hallet, Andrea Mossman, Krista Jarvis and Lindsay Sutton-Stephens have been announced as the show’s 2019 cast.
That’s a lot of people, all with their own schedules, but Nasca said that putting the show together “has been pretty comfortable.”
“We send out an email to people in September just to make sure that people are on board, and everybody knows its a big deal, so everybody wants to do it. We add songs, we take away songs we’ve done in the past,” Nasca said. “We have different people doing different parts. So for Van Morrison we have Bruce Hayes doing that. For ‘Rag Mama Rag’ we have a couple doing it, Alex Johnstone and Bonnie Culpepper, then we have a harp player, T.J. Hiddle and myself doing ‘Mystery Train.’ We have different musicians doing these songs … You’re gonna see Joni Mitchell come up and do Joni Mitchell, Neil Young come up and do Neil Young and Bob Dylan doing Bob Dylan.”
Tickets are $35 at Ivyballroom.com
Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30.