22 August 2007

Bob Dylan

Last night I went to the Bob Dylan concert at the Entertainment Centre. The performance, which was excellent, is still resonating in my mind. I particularly recall "Lay, Lady, Lay" and his final offering, "Blowin' In The Wind", whose timeless words were set to a more contemporary arrangement (though still with harmonica interlude). He also sang some songs from Modern Times , his latest album, which I'd heard (and which I recommend), including "Thunder on the Mountain" and "Beyond The Horizon".

Bob and his backing group performed for about an hour and three-quarters, with only a brief break near the end. As is apparently the custom at his concerts, he allowed the music and lyrics to speak for themselves, which they are well able to do. The only variation was when, near the end, he introduced the band members.

Apart from its quality, the length of the performance attested to Bob's stamina. Though he swapped his guitar for keyboards after a few numbers he remained standing throughout. Not bad for someone who is older (not to mention much more talented) than me.

I've long admired Dylan, but until last night had never seen him in person. Although I was sitting a long way from the stage I did, with uncharacteristic foresight, take a pair of binoculars so I was able to zoom in on the action, close enough to pick out several details, eg looked like an Oscar statuette standing on a speaker.

1 comment:

Noel said...

I saw him in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the mid 1960s. He had just migrated from "unplugged" status to "plugged" but like most people, I'd grown up with his first [self-titled] album and then, 'Freewheelin'.

I was disappointed with the live show, wanting him to stay the same forever. Clearly, no performer would do that and restrict their career in such a way. Logic, however, has no place in my emotions. Why did he try to take his fans on his musical journey through life? The answer, my friend is blowin' in the wind, perhaps.