Jimmy Ray "Luke" Paulman
Guitarist Jimmy Ray Paulman played in the Rock Housers, a group Levon Helm says was the best one in the Marvell, Arkansas, area, before joining Helm, George Paulman, and Will Jones, as Ronnie Hawkins' backing group in 1957. Paulman, described by Hawkins as "the best rhythm guitar player in the history of rock'n'roll", plays on the first two Ronnie Hawkins albums and also on early single releases. He left the group in 1959, shortly after Fred Carter Jr. was hired as the Hawks' second guitarist. Levon Helm claims that the character "Luke" in the Band's song The Weight is actually Jimmy Ray Paulman.