The Band's ringleader Robbie Robertson has died aged 80

Thursday 10 August 2023

Jaime Royal "Robbie" Robertson OC, Canadian musician recognised for his work as lead guitarist for Bob Dylan in the mid-late 1960s and early-mid 1970s; as guitarist and songwriter with "The Band" from their inception until 1978, and for his career as a solo recording artist has passed away aged 80.

The concert film of  The Last Waltz, The Band's farewell concert is our favourite music film of all time and was one of Martin Scorsese's very first outings as a director.

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Statement from Robbie Robertson’s family.

Robbie was surrounded by his family at the time of his death, including his wife, Janet, his ex-wife, Dominique, her partner Nicholas, and his children Alexandra, Sebastian, Delphine, and Delphine’s partner Kenny. He is also survived by his grandchildren Angelica, Donovan, Dominic, Gabriel, and Seraphina. Robertson recently completed his fourteenth film music project with frequent collaborator Martin Scorsese, Killers of the Flower Moon. In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that donations be made to the Six Nations of the Grand River to support a new Woodland Cultural Centre.

Statement from Martin Scorsese 

“Robbie Robertson was one of my closest friends, a constant in my life and my work.

I could always go to him as a confidante. A collaborator. An advisor. I tried to be the same for him.

Long before we ever met, his music played a central role in my life—me and millions and millions of other people all over this world. The Band’s music, and Robbie’s own later solo music, seemed to come from the deepest place at the heart of this continent, its traditions and tragedies and joys.

It goes without saying that he was a giant, that his effect on the art form was profound and lasting. 

There’s never enough time with anyone you love. And I loved Robbie.”