Note — The story of “The Weight” may not be in this interview. So it seems! But on half an hour’s notice, Rob Fraboni got on a call and we considered the whole topic again — where did those lyrics come from?
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Program Notes, Dec. 9, 2022
Today on Planet Waves FM, I have for you the replay of an interview with record producer Rob Fraboni. Most people cannot name many producers, though they are starting to get recognized as essential collaborators with musical artists.
The role of the producer is to turn the music from art into a record. In fact, before that even happens, the producer helps the artist turn the idea into art. Even a creative titan like Bob Dylan is great with an excellent producer (Fraboni, or Mark Knopfler to give two examples) and can fall apart without one.
Rob is someone who can work with the artist, the band, the tech crew, the record company and the studio, all of whom have different demands. The producer stands at the middle of that often seething ball of creativity and conflict.
While you may not have heard of him, anyone into classic rock has heard his work, which spans from projects with Bob Dylan (including the 1974 Planet Waves album) to the Rolling Stones to U2. He was integral to the soundrack of The Last Waltz making it into the film sounding as good as it does, and he knows all the secrets.
In this interview, he answers as many questions as I could think of: Was The Last Waltz overdubbed? What is the origin of the lyrics to “The Weight”? Note that the audio quality is not what you’re used to — particularly my voice. Rob and I figured out how to fix that and create the current sound of the program.
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