The Weber Brothers blow your mind most bitterly (and beautifully) with their stunning, collaborative cover of Bob Dylan‘s grim masterpiece It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
The followup single to their latest album Choose Your Own Adventure, the sibling duo’s darkly haunting, stylishly sparse nine-minute take on Dylan’s 1965 epic is nothing short of a master class in how to reimagine a classic. Augmenting the song’s urgent acoustic guitars with piano, bass and harmonica that deliver extra layers of richness and depth, the arrangement expands the song’s sonic palette while underscoring the intense urgency of Dylan’s timeless, eternally relevant lyrics. And that’s not the only addition the Webers make to the track. Along with vocals from Ryan and Sam Weber, the cut features a number of high-profile guests, including Toronto’s Paul James, a longtime Dylan friend who is frequently invited on stage whenever Bob performs in southern Ontario. Also taking part are Juno-nominated blues artist Paul Reddick and acclaimed Vancouver Americana artist Petunia.
As unforgettable as it is unmissable, the track is the latest milestone in the Webers’ long and storied career, which began when they were still in their teens. Growing up in the suburbs of Baltimore, they became obsessed with the idea of someone following the path of their heroes in The Band by playing with Ronnie Hawkins. So the Webers picked up stakes and headed north of the border to meet The Hawk — who, bowled over by their enthusiasm, gladly took them under his wing and taught them how to play rock ’n’ roll the “proper” way.
By the ages of 18 and 21 they had already performed alongside Kris Kristofferson, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Jeff Healey and The Tragically Hip, to name a few. Over the past 16 years they’ve recorded 12 independent albums and toured extensively throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. In October 2012 the brothers were invited to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame American Music Masters Tribute to Chuck Berry in Cleveland, where they shared the stage with Merle Haggard, Lemmy Kilmister, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Rick Derringer, Joe Bonamassa, Earl Slick, Steve Jordan and the father of rock ’n’ roll himself, Chuck Berry. 2016 saw the release of Before We Arrive: The Story of The Weber Brothers, a feature-length documentary chronicling the pair’s musical journey, which the Toronto Independent Film Festival dubbed Best Documentary that year.
Also highly regarded for their proficiency as studio musicians, the brothers have recorded on hundreds of outside projects, including work with Gordon Lightfoot and Willie Nelson. Between their renowned musical ability, high-energy, awe-inspiring performances and lessons learned first hand from rock ’n’ roll pioneers, a reputation as the “Baddest Band in the Land”, “heroes of this generation” and “the future in the big shoes of the past” now precedes them. Whether it be their unrivaled power as a full rock band, or their undeniable chemistry highlighted in a head-to-head duo performance, The Weber Brothers always deliver. “If it’s looked at as a passing of the torch or a keeping of the flame, then we’re the guys to do it,” says Ryan Weber.
Watch It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) above, listen to the track below, and find The Weber Brothers at their website, Facebook and Twitter.