The Band ‘Cahoots’ 50th Anniversary Reissues Includes 1971 Concert Recording

'Live at the Olympia Theatre, Paris, May 1971' features a partial recording of The Band's May 25, 1971 concert.

By Scott Bernstein Oct 22, 2021 9:37 am PDT

The Band‘s fourth studio album, 1971’s Cahoots, will be reissued in celebration of its 50th anniversary via Capitol/UMe on December 10. Cahoots (50th Anniversary) comes in various configurations with most featuring a slew of previously unreleased recordings, including the live album, Live at the Olympia Theatre, Paris, May 1971.

Cahoots was recorded in early 1971 at Bearsville Sounds Studios in Bearsville, New York and followed 1970’s Stage Fright. The beloved “Life Is A Carnival,” a cover of Bob Dylan’s “When I Paint My Masterpiece” and the underrated gem “Shoot Out In Chinatown” were among the 11 songs included on the original LP. The Band guitarist Robbie Robertson oversaw the Cahoots reissues, which feature a new stereo mix by Bob Clearmountain from the original multi-track masters. The 2021 mix of “Life Is A Carnival” was released today and can be streamed below.

While previous 50th anniversary reissues of The Band albums stayed true to the originals, Robertson asked Clearmountain to “transform” the original mixes to include elements the mixer thought were missing from Cahoots. “Robbie told me, ‘Just think of the original mixes as rough mixes. Pretty much don’t pay attention to the mixes themselves,'” Clearmountain explained in the liner notes. “I told Bob, ‘There are no rules. So, every mix we do, I want to start from scratch. I don’t even want to listen to the original. I want to listen to the way we hear it now and be fearless and experimental with it,'” Robertson added.

Cahoots (50th Anniversary) packages include vinyl, CD and digital packages featuring the album remixed, remastered and expanded. A multi-format Super Deluxe box set arrives in a beautiful package and adds new Dolby Atmos and 5.1 surround-sound mixes prepped by Clearmountain of the LP and four bonus tracks in high resolution sound on Blu-ray along with the new stereo mix. A 20-page booklet with extensive liner notes, photo lithographs and a reproduction of the 1971 “Life Is A Carnival” vinyl single issued in Japan are among other goodies in the box set.

Digital and CD versions of the reissue as well as the box set feature Live at the Olympia Theatre, Paris, May 1971 consisting of 11 tracks recorded towards the start of a European tour as well as outtakes, instrumental versions, stripped-down mixes and other early takes. The live album represents the second half of the concert and was recorded by a French radio station. Head here to pre-order Cahoots (50th Anniversary) and for the various tracklists.

Hear “Life Is A Carnival (2021 Stereo Mix)” below:

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