In The Last Waltz, the 1976 documentary of the farewell performance of The Band, director Martin Scorsese was able to cull footage from a host of star performers paying tribute to and playing with the group—including Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Neil Young, and Joni Mitchell. But none, I would argue, could compete with Van Morrison for sheer kinetic power.
For all Caravan’s innate brilliance, apparent in the studio version on Moondance LP, I was simply unprepared for Morrison's exuberance in concert, the way he jumped, pumped and led the audience on with, “One more time,” again and again and again. You can see it on the faces of Robbie Robertson and the other members of The Band that, on this night of nights, this was something special.
This YouTube clip is, quite simply, enough to make you not just want to “hear the merry gypsies play,” but to join them.