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Levon Helm

Guest Blogger: Paul La Raia, author of The Levon Helm Midnight Ramble (Backbeat Books)

Paul LaRaia

Levon Helm is a true inspiration, one of those people that when he enters a room you can feel his presence.  A more down to earth and humble person would be hard to find. He was blessed with that real down-home southern charm, he always made you feel welcomed. His smile and musical talents were inseparable they both would reach right into your heart and soul, and you couldn’t help yourself from  being moved. The Rambles were more like a gospel meeting than a Rock & Roll show. Someone said that “Levon was more Shaman than showman.” Quite appropriate.

I was so lucky that he trusted me and gave me the opportunity to document a small part of his journey, “The Midnight Ramble.” I will sure miss seeing him and that famous smile and hearing some the greatest music I have ever experienced in my life. I feel that the Rambles will still carry on, he has passed the baton to the members of his band.

Levon, I love and will miss you.

Paul La Raia


The Levon Helm Midnight Ramble by Paul La Raia

The official record of the incredible down-home jam sessions held by Levon Helm, the charismatic drummer, singer, and sometimes mandolin player for The Band. Accompanying the spectacular photos are testimonials and remembrances from the notable blues entertainers and musicians who have joined the Ramble.