Drive-By Truckers – “Danko/Manuel”
On their somewhat overlooked 2004 release The Dirty South, the venerable Athens, Georgia sextet produced this ballad that pays tribute to two departed members of legendary group The Band. Rick Danko, who died of a heart attack in December 1999, was a multi-instrumentalist and vocalist who sang lead on Band classics like “It Makes No Difference”. Richard Manuel, who committed suicide in March 1986, played piano and other instruments and contributed haunting vocals to tracks like “The Shape I’m In”. The Truckers’ poignant song talks about the legacy of these two musicians within a broader modern-day context.