Robbie Robertson has revealed that he is working on a solo album he described as “violent and sexy,” and that he was aiming to find time to work on more of the Band’s catalog in order to produce further 50th anniversary re-releases. The updated version of their 1968 debut Music From Big Pink arrives on Aug. 31.

Robertson said that, alongside writing a sequel to his 2016 memoir and composing the score for upcoming Martin Scorsese movie The Irishman, the new solo album was also underway. “I'm not finished yet so it's a little hard to describe, but it is one of the most violent and sexy records that I've ever been part of,” he told Billboard in a new interview. “I’ve really done something this time, and I'm very excited about that.”

He said of the new edition of Big Pink: “It was recorded on four tracks... in a way that couldn't be messed with a lot. There's not a lot of variables in it. It wasn't like now, when you've got things on 50 tracks and can play with them a lot. But Bob [Clearmountain, producer] did such a majestic job. I hear things that I never heard before – and I know this record pretty well. He did something that took me deeper inside of the experience of the music, without messing with it, which I was I was really hoping for. It just sounds better, and it surrounds you more."

Robertson acknowledged the album’s iconic status, saying: “It's so deeply ingrained and so familiar, and revisiting it, knowing that this record has taken on a musical, historic place, I was listening to it differently, and with a lot of satisfaction. There is such a deep soul in that period of The Band, making music that still has the same magnet that I hoped it would have back then... it's stood that test of time very well.” Confirming that other Band re-releases would follow, he joked: “They'll be making me roll up my sleeves again.”

 

Top 100 '60s Rock Albums