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Levon Helm

Dead at 71

4/19/2012 12:30 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

Levon Helm has died after a long battle with throat cancer.
The Band
singer/drummer Levon Helm -- famous for hits like "The Weight" ("Take a load off Annie" ...) -- has died after a long battle with throat cancer.

Helm -- diagnosed with throat cancer in the late 90s -- passed away this afternoon in NYC, surrounded by his friends and bandmates.



Helm formed what would eventually become The Band with Robbie Robertson, Richard Manuel, Rick Danko and Garth Hudson in 1964.

The group went by various names -- but didn't become the "The Band" until after they toured with Bob Dylan in 1965 and 1966 ... a reference to their back-up band history with various frontmen.

Helm has won 3 Grammys for his solo work in the last 4 years. In 2008, The Band received the Grammys' Lifetime Achievement Award.

Helm is survived by his wife and daughter. He was 71.

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77 COMMENTS

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31.

kristine    

TMZ you dropped the ball on Jonathan Frids death!!!!

I'm disappointed! :

895 days ago
32.

able_walker    

Levon Helm...Vocals and Drums..Genius.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11Y987Uf1wY

895 days ago
33.

gimmeshelter    

now, this was real music. can't we please rid ourselves of the hip/hop and rap **** that ruined our american culture and just have honest, great and REAL music back..please?

895 days ago
34.

Sabrina    

RIP
... and now that damn song is stuck in my head.

895 days ago
35.

Salvatore    

Loved your music, and became interested in your music through my mother and my childhood. It wasn't until I was a bit older that I could appreciate the music fully, but I love the laid back Canadian soulfulness that was part of your music's sound.

Hope you're enjoying the next leg of your journey...Rest well.

895 days ago
36.

CutTheCrap    

Most recent work I've seen of his is the small part hey played in Shooter, a small part, but a great one at that.

895 days ago
37.

Gadgetgirl    

i remember him from coal miner's daughter. i only knew him as an actor. i love that movie. r.i.p. levon.

895 days ago
38.

your own luck    

Loved The Band!

895 days ago
39.

Jeff Becker    

Did he die from embarassment from those huge fake chompers in his mouth?

895 days ago
40.

SNAFU    

I enjoyed his work in The Right Stuff also. RIP

895 days ago
41.

sunnyroberto    

Classy . . humble . . . talented . . . soulful. Levon was everything that today's musicians are not. Two years from now, nobody will remember Justin Beiber, but 40 years from now my grandchildren will be rocking to Levon and The Band.

895 days ago
42.

I luv u RPattz!    

I loved him the movie SHOOTER.

895 days ago
43.

Tomas Pavelka    

RIP Levon, you're a legend to me. And definitely to thousands of others. May you rest in peace http://www.memmento.com/Memorial-at-Memmento/669/Levon-Helm
Please visit and share a memory. Let's make this tribute BIG!

895 days ago
44.

JB    

As a supporter of all music, I have to say that something is very wrong with the state of music today. There has been very little, if any coverage on Levon's health on MTV in the past couple of days. I remember turning on MTV around the time Lil wayne was getting out of jail and they followed the prison bus and updated the situation like it was something important for the kids to know. As a kid, I hated hearing music like the band and fought with my father about it constantly. I still love my old and new styles of rap, country and even metal, but as I got older I found the music that Levon Helm and the band made to be timeless. I can only hope the new generation will give it a chance and let their musc influence them with the great songwriting and lyrics. RIP Levon, ther are very few like you with us today.

895 days ago
45.

disembedded    

Levon Helm was a joyful, gentle man who gave many wonderful contributions to rock music through the years. A detailed multimedia tribute to Helm can be found here:

http://disembedded.wordpress.com/2012/04/19/legendary-levon-helm-drummer-and-singer-of-the-band-dead-at-71/

895 days ago
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