Some children of famous people run away from their last name. Amy Helm runs right at it, lays a great big sweet harmony up under it and sings a hymn to it. Then she rocks the house so hard and so loud, her father, Levon Helm, who died in 2012, surely hears her.

At the Union Chapel in Oak Bluffs Sunday evening, she captivated an audience with a free-flowing set as hot as the stifling air in the old church. She and her band, the Handsome Strangers, appeared Saturday at the Newport Folk Festival, and might have been forgiven for cruising through a few tunes for their Island performance. The heat did prompt a few pauses on stage, but Ms. Helm and her band never cruised, and seemed to gain momentum as the temperatures dropped a few degrees, finishing the performance with jaw-dropping musicianship.

Near the end of the show Ms. Helm and her bandmates moved to floor in front of the stage to sing an a cappella hymn her father taught her. — Jeanna Shepard

For 10 years, Amy Helm was a student and bandmate of her father, the widely admired drummer for The Band. Ms. Helm released her first solo album Didn’t It Rain, a year ago. Though her father’s roots and Americana influence are clear, and her own place in that genre well established, she is just as clearly moving in a new direction with her solo record. WMVY, which began playing tunes from her latest record as soon as it was issued, collaborated with the West Tisbury Library Foundation for the benefit performance.

“This is such a cool event,” Ms. Helm told the audience. “I’m so happy to be invited to help raise money for the library.”

She opened the set on Sunday night with the spiritual Didn’t It Rain, the title track to the album. She followed with two of her original songs, the soulful Sky’s Falling, and a hard driving version of Rescue Me.

The program mellowed a bit after that, when Ms. Helm picked up her mandolin for a quick tour of blues, roots and bluegrass sounds. Before the set was over, she played nearly all the songs on the album, along with up-tempo covers of two familiar Allen Toussaint tunes.

Amy Helm and her band rocked the house with a rendition of The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down. — Jeanna Shepard

There were two poignant moments near the end of the program. A battered old marching drum and a large tom were carried on stage and reverently set on stands. They were the drums Levon Helm had used in his Woodstock studio. Amy Helm played them as the group pitched into a version of The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, true as could be to the version featuring her father on vocals, released nearly five decades ago.

When the applause died down, the room got quiet.

“We’re going to sing a hymn for you, that my father taught me,” Ms. Helm said. “It’s for everybody who is no longer with us.”

Ms. Helm, her guitar player Daniel Littleton and bassist Adam Minkoff moved down to the floor in front of the stage and delivered a polished a cappella version of Gloryland, without microphones. The hymn is an ode to “going home,” and the end of suffering. The complex harmonies were spiritual and flawless. This time tears mixed with applause.

Mr. Littleton deserves accolades for his performance, wrestling an amazing variety of sound out of two acoustic and two electric guitars. Any fears of a slow finish were quickly extinguished when the band reassembled on stage and closed the set with an up-up-up-tempo cover of the Sam Cooke song Ain’t That Good News, which drew an enthusiastic standing ovation.

The opening act, the Brooklyn based duo Fife and Drom, got the evening rolling with a jazzy, irreverent set of blues rock tunes, and later joined Amy Helm on stage for several tunes.