The Weight

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About The Weight

"The Weight" is an original song by the Canadian-American group the Band that was released as Capitol Records single 2269 in 1968 and on the group's debut album Music from Big Pink. Written by Band member Robbie Robertson, the song is about a visitor's experiences in a town mentioned in the lyric's first line as Nazareth, which later inspired the name of the Scottish band who covered "Love Hurts" in 1976. "The Weight" has significantly influenced American popular music, having been listed as No. 41 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time published in 2004. Pitchfork Media named it the 13th best song of the Sixties, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame named it one of the 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. PBS, which broadcast performances of the song in Ramble at the Ryman (2011), Austin City Limits (2012), and Quick Hits (2012), describes it as "a masterpiece of Biblical allusions, enigmatic lines and iconic characters" and notes its enduring popularity as "an essential part of the American songbook.""The Weight" is one of The Band's best known songs, gaining considerable album-oriented rock airplay even though it was not a significant hit single for the group in the U. S., peaking at only No. 63. After it was released, the record debuted just six days later on KHJ's "'Boss 30' records" and peaked at No. 3 there three weeks later. The Band's recording also fared well in Canada and the UK – in those countries, the single was a top 40 hit, peaking at No. 35 in Canada and No. 21 in the UK in 1968. The song had three cover releases in 1968 and 1969 with arrangements that appealed to a diversity of music audiences. Aretha Franklin's 1969 soul music arrangement was included in her This Girl's in Love with You album, which peaked in the U. S. at No. 19 on the Hot 100 and No. 3 on the soul chart and also peaked in Canada at No. 12. Jackie DeShannon's 1968 pop music arrangement, debuting on the Hot 100 one week before The Band's, peaked at No. 55 in the U. S. and No. 35 in Canada. A joint single rhythm and blues arrangement released by Diana Ross & the Supremes and The Temptations in 1969, hit No. 46 in the U. S., and No. 36 in Canada. The Band's and Jackie DeShannon's versions never mentioned the title. The Band's version credits the group's individual members—Jaime Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel, Garth Hudson and Levon Helm—on the record label, rather than The Band as a single entity. 


Year:
1976
48,742 Views
Playlists:
#510

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I pulled into Nazareth, was feelin' about half past dead
I just need some place where I can lay my head
Hey, mister, can you tell me where a man might find a bed?
He just grinned and shook my hand, "no," was all he said

Take a load off, Fanny
Take a load for free
Take a load off, Fanny
And (and) (and) you put the load right on me
(You put the load right on me)

I picked up my bag, I went lookin' for a place to hide
When I saw Carmen and the Devil walkin' side by side
I said, hey, Carmen, come on let's go downtown
She said, "I gotta go, but my friend can stick around"

Take a load off, Fanny
Take a load for free
Take a load off, Fanny
And (and) (and) you put the load right on me
(You put the load right on me)

Go down, Miss Moses, there's nothin' you can say
It's just ol' Luke and Luke's waitin' on the Judgment Day
Well, Luke, my friend, what about young Anna Lee
He said, do me a favor, son, won't you stay and keep Anna Lee company?

Take a load off, Fanny
Take a load for free
Take a load off, Fanny
And (and) (and) you put the load right on me
(You put the load right on me)

Crazy Chester followed me and he caught me in the fog
He said, I will fix your rack, if you'll take Jack, my dog
I said, wait a minute, Chester, you know I'm a peaceful man
He said, that's okay, boy, won't you feed him when you can?

Yeah, take a load off, Fanny
Take a load for free
Take a load off, Fanny
And (and) (and) you put the load right on me
(You put the load right on me)

Catch a cannon ball now to take me down the line
My bag is sinkin' low and I do believe it's time
To get back to Miss Fanny, you know she's the only one
Who sent me here with her regards for everyone

Take a load off, Fanny
Take a load for free
Take a load off, Fanny
And (and) (and) you put the load right on me
(You put the load right on me)

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The Band

The Band were a Canadian-American roots rock group that originally consisted of Rick Danko (bass guitar, double bass, fiddle, trombone, vocals), Levon Helm (drums, mandolin, guitar, vocals), Garth Hudson (keyboard instruments, saxophones, trumpet), Richard Manuel (piano, drums, baritone saxophone, vocals) and Robbie Robertson (guitar, vocals). The members of the Band first came together as they joined rockabilly singer Ronnie Hawkins's backing group, The Hawks, one by one between 1958 and 1963. more »

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Written by: Robbie Robertson

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