Moondog Matinee is the fifth studio album by Canadian/American rock group the Band, released in 1973. It consists entirely of cover material reflecting the group's love of R&B and blues music, with one exception in their interpretation of the theme from the film The Third Man.

Moondog Matinee
Moondog Matinee, The Band, original cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 15, 1973
RecordedMarch–June 1973
StudioBearsville Sound Studios, Bearsville, NY; Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA; New York, NY
ProducerThe Band
The Band chronology
Rock of Ages
Moondog Matinee
Planet Waves
Reissue cover
Australian alternate cover
Moondog Matinee, The Band, Australian cover.jpg
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic2/5 stars[1]
Christgau's Record GuideB+[2]
DownBeat3/5 stars[3]
Entertainment WeeklyB+[4]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide3/5 stars[6]

In a 2002 interview, Levon Helm described the reasoning for recording an album of covers: "That was all we could do at the time. We couldn't get along—we all knew that fairness was a bunch of shit. We all knew we were getting screwed, so we couldn't sit down and create no more music. 'Up on Cripple Creek' and all that stuff was over—all that collaboration was over, and that type of song was all we could do."[7]

The original idea had been to replicate the group's setlists of the mid-'60s when they had been known as Levon and the Hawks, playing clubs throughout Canada and the US. Of the ten tracks, only one, "Share Your Love (With Me)" had been performed by the group in the mid-'60s. The rest were merely tracks the group admired, two of them, "Holy Cow" and "A Change Is Gonna Come", chronologically coming after the group's club days.

Rhapsody praised the album, calling it one of its favorite cover albums.[8]

Track listingEdit

Side oneEdit

No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."Ain't Got No Home"Clarence "Frogman" HenryLevon Helm3:20
2."Holy Cow"Allen ToussaintRick Danko, Helm3:15
3."Share Your Love (With Me)"Deadric Malone, Alfred BraggsRichard Manuel2:50
4."Mystery Train"Junior Parker, Sam PhillipsHelm5:35
5."Third Man Theme"Anton KarasInstrumental2:43

Side twoEdit

No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."Promised Land"Chuck BerryHelm3:00
2."The Great Pretender"Buck RamManuel3:07
3."I'm Ready"Fats Domino, Al Lewis, Sylvester BradfordHelm3:22
4."Saved"Jerry Leiber and Mike StollerManuel3:42
5."A Change Is Gonna Come"Sam CookeDanko4:15
  • Sides one and two were combined as tracks 1–10 on CD reissues.

2001 reissue bonus tracksEdit

11."Didn't It Rain (Outtake)"Traditional3:16
12."Crying Heart Blues (Outtake)"Joe Brown3:29
13."Shakin' (Outtake)"Sam Cooke3:31
14."What Am I Living For (Outtake)"Fred Jay, Art Harris5:04
15."Going Back to Memphis (Outtake)"Chuck Berry5:02
16."Endless Highway (Studio version)"Robertson5:09


The Band
Additional personnel
  • Mark Harman – engineer
  • Jay Ranellucci – engineer
  • John Wilson – engineer
  • Edward Kasper – artwork


  1. ^ link
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: B". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved February 21, 2019.
  3. ^ "The Band: Moondog Matinee". DownBeat: 66. October 2001.
  4. ^ "The Band: Moondog Matinee". Entertainment Weekly: 81. May 25, 2001.
  5. ^ Graff, Gary; Durchholz, Daniel (eds) (1999). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide. Farmington Hills, MI: Visible Ink Press. p. 72. ISBN 1-57859-061-2.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  6. ^ Brackett, Nathan, with Hoard, Christian (eds) (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th edn). New York, NY: Fireside. p. 42. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  7. ^ Lopate, Mitch. "He Shall Be Levon...: The Band's Levon Helm Is Rocking Harder Than Ever With The Barnburners", GRITZ magazine, Fall 2002.
  8. ^ Rhapsody’s Favorite Covers Albums retrieved 01-08-10 Archived 2010-07-31 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^