Monday, November 29, 2010

Luke Doucet & The White Falcon: Ophelia

On Mondays, I feature cover songs that give a new perspective on old songs. Originally recorded by The Band, a live version of “Ophelia” is interpreted by Luke Doucet and The White Falcon. The band is named for Doucet’s guitar – a reissue version of the famous Gretsch White Falcon guitar – the same guitar that was notably used by both Neil Young and Stephen Stills.

The White Falcon was Gretsch’s answer to Gibson’s 400 CES – its competitor’s top of the line archtop electric guitar that was improvement to the acoustic Super 400 with a cutaway body and a thicker top to reduce feedback. Gretsch’s White Falcon was an attractive alternative for many rock players and Luke Doucet shows how this monster of an electric guitar purrs and growls on stage.

Live Version from The Band

Here’s an energetic version of “Ophelia” by The Band with Levon Helm on vocals. This recording comes from The Band’s 1976 album and film “The Last Waltz.”

Studio Version from The Band

This version of “Ophelia” came from The Band’s 1975 album of all original material named “Northern Lights – Southern Cross.” While a horn section accompanied The Band on the version from “The Last Waltz,” the brass, woodwinds, and saxophones were played by keyboardist Garth Hudson and the trombone was added by bassist Rick Danko.

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