Tonight, solo-ed it to see Bob Dylan play the wonderfully small venue, City Center, which seats less than 2,800 people. Last week, I randomly checked their website, and lo and behold, a very good seat, 3rd row center of the first level above the orchestra, popped up, so it was just too good to pass on. Everyone I knew balked at the price, so I had to pay for the privilege of catching Bob all by my lonesome. It was okay, tho -- I had a better seat than David Fricke or Sarah Vowell!
There was no opener (no Racs, boo!); Dylan started at about 8:05. He played non-stop, with a short 5 minute break before the encore, no banter except to introduce the band during the encore, and then finished at 9:55. And I walked in my door at home by 10:35, so I was happy!
Tonight he focused on his well-received latest effort, Modern Times, playing 7 out of 10 tracks on the album. He played a handful of classics too, including my favs "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right" and "Highway 61 Revisited," and even a couple from his last album, Love And Theft.
The funny thing about Bob Dylan's singing (if you wanna call it that) nowadays is that even for the classic songs, sometimes it takes half a second to figure out what he's singing (or growling) because he sounds so different from when he was younger. But I guess it's different in a good way -- yeah, we love hearing him play the old shit, but his grizzled croaky voice gives everything a new spin. And you can't go into a Dylan show hoping he'll play certain songs because he's so damn prolific. Just sit back and enjoy the genius, ya know?
Dylan closed out the evening with the standard "Like A Rolling Stone":
(Sorry for how shaky the video is -- I need to smuggle in a tripod too!)
Here's the setlist from the show:
Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power)
Rollin' And Tumblin'
Boots Of Spanish Leather
High Water (For Charley Patton)
When The Deal Goes Down
It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)
Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Tangled Up In Blue
Spirit On The Water
Highway 61 Revisited
Thunder On The Mountain
Like A Rolling Stone
Check out my YouTube for all three songs of the encore.