On June 23, two of the most in-demand artists in roots music, Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams, will take center stage with their self-titled debut album on Red House Records. After decades of marriage and seven years working closely with Levon Helm - Campbell as bandleader and producer (winning three Grammys for his work) and wife Williams as singer - their first album together features eight originals and three covers honed at Helm's legendary Midnight Rambles.
"It was the most pure musical experience I've ever had," Campbell says of their time with Helm. "It gave me the template for how to make music for the rest of my life: no egos, no agenda, no petty stuff. I got inspired to write more songs for Teresa and me to sing."
After Levon’s 2012 passing, they grieved, celebrated his life, and got to work finishing "Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams." They had the tunes, and, with drummer (and ace recording engineer) Justin Guip and Ramble Band member Byron Isaacs on bass, they had an ass-kicking, road-worthy band. Additionally, the lovefest of guests on Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams sweetened the pot considerably: Amy Helm’s voice melding with Larry and Teresa’s on the gorgeous Grateful Dead hymn “Attics Of My Life,” Little Feat keyboardist Bill Payne’s rollicking touch on several tracks, and Levon himself appearing on “You’re Running Wild,” a tune made famous by the Louvin Brothers, now given an Orbison touch (originally recorded during Levon’s Dirt Farmer sessions). Finally, it all dovetailed into place.
In addition to Helm, Campbell and Williams have played with a Who's Who of Music Icons: Bob Dylan (Rolling Stone called Larry's eight-year tenure "the greatest period of the Never Ending Tour"), Paul Simon, Phil Lesh, Emmylou Harris, Sheryl Crow, Keith Richards, Cyndi Lauper, Hot Tuna and Mavis Staples. In addition to his Grammy wins with Helm, Campbell has won the Lifetime Achievement Award (2008) and Instrumentalist of the Year Award (2013) from the Americana Music Association.
With Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams, this duo not only brings a lot to the table, they bring the table itself – plus the house, the still, the church, the marriage bed, the sawdust-covered floor, and abiding, unconditional love, all carried in two voices harmonizing across hills, hollers, porches, and fire escapes. Those close harmonies ride atop music made in a mountain refuge, far from the madding crowd, connected to a spirit that lives on in song.
Campbell and Williams will tour the country this spring and summer, including two New York shows before album release (4/8 at Rockwood and 5/18 at City Winery) and a two-day stand at Phil Lesh's Terrapin Crossroads in San Francisco (6/18-9). See current dates below (more TBA).
'Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams' Track Listing:
01. Surrender to Love
02. Bad Luck Charm
03. Another One More Time
04. Down on My Knees
05. You're Running Wild
06. Everybody Loves You
07. Did You Love Me At All
08. Ain't Nobody For Me
09. Midnight Highway
10. Keep Your Lamp Trimmed and Burning
11. Attics of My Life
5/09 - Woodstock, NY @ Levon Helm Studios (Midnight Ramble)
5/18 - New York, NY @ City Winery
6/06-7 - Hunter, NY @ Mountain Jam Fest
6/12 - Marlboro, NY @ Falcon
6/13 - Amagansett, NY @ Stephen Talkhouse
6/18 - San Rafael, CA @ Terrapin Crossroads *
6/19 - San Rafael, CA @ Terrapin Crossroads
6/26 - Saratoga Springs, NY @ Caffe Lena
6/27 - Katonah, NY @ Caramoor Roots Fest
7/10 - Plymouth, NH @ Flying Monkey !
7/11 - Beverly, MA @ Cabot Theater !
7/12 - Truro, MA @ Payomet PAC !
* w/ Phil Lesh
! w/ Hot Tuna