Famous drummer of The Band, Levon Helm is now in the final stages of cancer, his family revealed in a statement released on his website this past week.
“Levon is in the final stages of his battle with cancer. Please send your prayers and love to him as he makes his way through this part of his journey,” reads the statement written by his daughter Amy and wife Sandy.
The 71-year-old Arkansas native was first diagnosed with throat cancer in the 1990s.
“Thank you fans and music lovers who have made his life so filled with joy and celebration… he has loved nothing more than to play, to fill the room up with music, lay down the back beat, and make the people dance! He did it every time he took the stage,” reads the statement.
According to reports, he damaged his vocal cords following radiation treatment and earlier this month, canceled performances at the Midnight Ramble Show in New York as well as a New Orleans performance.
Helm is best known for his work in The Band. The Band produced hit albums like “Music from Big Pink” and “The Band” and become a notable group in the 1960s. One of their most famous songs was “The Weight” and ranked 41st best song of all time in Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
It wasn’t the only acknowledgement The Band received, over the years they have been recognized numerous times for their work. The group was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1989 and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. They were also ranked 50 on Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time in 2004 and received Grammy’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008.
The Band broke up in 1976 and the world thought they had seen the last of the group but the breakup wasn’t for long: they reformed again in 1983 and continued producing hits and performing. The Band eventually broke up for good in 1999.
Check out The Band “The Weight” performance.