“I was living in Woodstock, doing little bits of recording. My gear was in this barn at Levon Helm’s house. Billy came up and made a record with me there. He sought me out, which was nice of him.
“There were great acoustics in Levon’s barn, perfect for getting huge drum sounds. Billy wanted to explore spaciousness. He was a big Led Zeppelin fan, and I think that came out in his music – the big, in-your-face riffs, along with his style of singing.
“Billy had his songs very worked out. He was fairly easygoing but very focused. I was more of a facilitator, really, but I think that’s what a producer should be. Any time you try to put your own stamp on an artist, you're not really thinking about what the music needs to be. You have to know when to stay out of the way.
“The album wasn't hugely successful at the time of its relief, but it's had an interesting afterlife, as the song The Big Beat is now the most-sampled track in music history. The drum beat and the guitar riff have been used by Jay-Z and many hip-hop artists. That's pretty cool. I never would have predicted something like that happening when we made the album."
Offord co-produced (with Squier) and co-engineered (with Rob Davis) 1980's The Tale Of The Tape.