Bob Dylan 990620 in Anaheim, California
Subject: Anaheim 6.20.99 From: Richard Rollins firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 09:06:07 -0800 Ill let someone else post the setlist and give song by song accounts. Ive seen bob many times since 1974, and I cant imagine a better show than last night in Anaheim. His voice was extraordinary, he hit every (well, almost) sylable perfectly, and was absolutley full of energy. It was simply extraordinary. Easily the best I've ever seen, and I've seen many superb performances. Cordially, Rich Rollins
Subject: Re: Anaheim 6.20.99 From: AlanBSFB email@example.com Date: 21 Jun 1999 17:27:15 GMT I found the Shoreline show the same way. I saw Portland Concord and Shoreline. Shoreline may be the top Bob show I've seen.
Subject: Re: Anaheim 6.20.99 From: LoveMinus0 firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 19:26:14 GMT (to what Richard Rollins wrote.... ) I couldn't agree more -- I first saw Dylan in 1985 (when I was 18) and haven't missed a local (and sometimes not so local) show since. As can be imagined, I've seen some dreadful performances, as well as a few true gems. Last night earned a place at the top of my list. Loved "Hallelujah" -- first time I'd heard that one. "Tangled" started out a bit shaky, but by the time the bird flew, Dylan et.al. absolutely soared. His harp playing just blew me away, and I can honestly say that in 15 years, I've never seen him dance like that. The first comparison that came to mind was Tom Jones (!), but then my compatriots & I realized that his moves were oddly Ricky Martin-esque. Bob's livin the vida loca, indeed.... "Not Dark Yet" was perfect, loved every note. Encore of "Not Fade Away" was a treat -- ever since I first heard it on bobdylan.com, I couldn't wait to hear it live. Last night's version didn't disappoint. The only song that didn't seem to work was "Mobile". Usually I can tell what song's being played within a few bars of the intro -- last night he was through two verses and a chorus before I figured it out. Almost seemed as if he decided he didn't feel like playing it until it was too late and just went through the motions till it was over. Still, I've heard worse, and the rest of the wonderful set more than made up for this lackluster version. As for Paul Simon, first let me say that I am a fan -- "There Goes Rhymin' Simon" is one of my all-time favorite albums. I was actually looking forward to his set, as it was the first time I was seeing him live. Well, his show was just horrible. The setlist was totally inappropriate for a big venue like Anaheim (lots of slower, moody songs which were real snoozers), and even the more lively numbers just didn't fly. I know Simon has a reputation for being a total perfectionist (an attribute which I gleefully accept that Dylan does not share) and it seemed as though his band was painfully aware of this. They just didn't gel -- each member seemed to be so intent on getting their own parts exactly right that it didn't sound like they were listening to each other. If that wasn't bad enough, the songs were arranged precisely as they were on the albums -- same inflections in the vocals, same solos, same everything. One of the greatest things about Dylan is that each time he decides to put a song out there, it'll certainly be different than the studio version, and probably different that the last time he played it. His interpretations of his own songs seem to change as he changes. That dynamism keeps his music alive for him as well as for us. I guess Simon is so full of himself that he feels he got it right the first time around, so why change it. Blehhcck. I was wholly underwhelmed. Grateful that Dylan's still living outside the law, LLJ
Subject: Review: Anaheim 6/20/99 From: Keith Moore email@example.com Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 13:56:23 -0700 OK, now that I've regained consciousness, it's time to report in on last night's show. I saw Dylan in '86 with Tom Petty, and in '92, and have never seen Simon before last night. Our seats were perfect--third row, just a hair to the left of dead-center. Right about 7:30, some guy came on stage laying down huge sticks of incense. About 7:45, out comes Bob and the boys. Bob was wearing country-formal, and they jumped right into "Hallelujah, I'm Ready to Go." This is a great old tune, and it felt a little like "Bob's Country-Bear Jamboree", and I mean that in the best sense of the phrase. The acoustic songs, as he often does, were re-arranged from their original versions. This leaves the age-old question as to whether Bob is taking the greater leap here than Paul, as Paul plays his tunes letter-faithful for the most part. Well, both work for me, and the two legends make a great contrast in style--so similar, yet so different. Dylan was impish, Chaplinesque (like I remember folks saying he was during the early Greenwich days up on stage). He was clearly enjoying these versions of these songs with these players. The country-inflected (pedal steel, upright bass) sound is a natural fit for Bob's American music. Blues, country, gospel, rock, it's all here and Bob was hamming it up real good. I told my brother that when Dylan pulled out the electric guitar he ought to yell out "Judas!" just for old time's sake. Fortunately, he didn't listen to my advice. Anyway, during the electric portion of the set, we look around and suddenly it's "Yo--Bum rush the stage!" Folks had already been dancing a bit, but the security guys actually started encouraging people in the front section of seats to come up to the stage area, which they quickly did. I was right up front, pretty enthusiastic, and Dylan shot me a kinda nervous look. I held up my palms facing him, like "Don't worry man, I ain't gonna do a Soy-bomb thing, I wanna see the rest of the show." He was smiling and dancing and playing harp on one foot and doing old Johnny Ace-type antics. Loved that haunting and poignant "Not Dark Yet" but Bob, my good man, you screwed us out of "Love Sick." Ironically, "Like A Rolling Stone" was very faithful to the original, and the rockers like "All Along the Watchtower" and "Highway 61 Revisited" had the joint jumping. "Not Fade Away" is a perfect finale, the defiant bookend response to "Not Dark Yet." Then Paul Simon came on stage and it was a magical, majestic moment. "Sounds of Silence" was beautifully done, and the last duet was "Knockin' on Heaven's Door." You could have left and it would have been a great evening by two of the best songwriters of this century. Simon came back after intermission with "Bridge Over Troubled Water." Now, at this point having worked over my Jim Beam (airplane bottles that we smuggled in), backed up with beer pretty well I whipped out a joint to take things to a different level. All of a sudden, this Chinese (just being descriptive here, I don't care about the man's race) guy who had brought his wife and what looked to be about his eight year-old daughter, turns around and says "Please don't smoke." This is what is fucked up about the nineties. Politically-correct Nazis everywhere you turn. I wanted to say to the guy, "Hey man, this ain't 'The Nutcracker Suite.' Why you bringing your little girl to see Bob 'Everybody must get stoned' Dylan and Paul 'I stepped outside and smoked myself a J' Simon for anyway? Get a fucking babysitter and go see Michael Bolton if you want an evening of decaf and ersatz crap. This is the real deal." I stayed cool, though as we made sure we were good and plenty before I made a big show of putting it out and being a nice boy. I gotta tell you, I said some rude things here recently about Paul loading up his setlist with too much ROTS but he was on his game big-time last night, and this stuff really works live. He's got about eight hundred musicians up there with him on stage, but it's not busy or cluttered like sometimes happens with too many players. If Dylan's show is pure Americana, Simon is Mr. Internacionale. What was cool was after his normal show we started yelling at him "Paul! Paul! The Boxer! The Boxer!" We were maybe five-six feet directly in front of him and made eye-contact several times. It couldn't be helped, the way we were carrying on he probably thought his house had caught fire. Anyway, he surprised us by then playing "Proof" from ROTS. I recognized it because it comes right after "The Coast" on the record and sometimes I was late clicking from song #3 to song #5 ("Further to Fly"). And then he walks back up to the mike with his acoustic: "And I am just a poor boy, though my story's seldom told, I have squandered my resistance for a pocketful of mumbles, such are promises..." Beautiful, man. Fucking beautiful. I put up a post last week asking Paul to finish with this, and the sun gods were beaming down over So Cal last night. The moon was in the seventh house and the karma felt just right and my mojo was aligned with the zen of the moment. Perfect. With these two guys, I could feel the weight of history up on stage, the incredible body of work they have laid down. We won't see the likes of them again, and they ain't kids anymore. If you weren't there, make sure you are at a later date. Keith
(From the Wallflowers newsgroup.) ...I went to the Bob Dylan/Paul Simon concert tonight, which was absolutely amazing!! I went mostly because I love Bob, but I realized Paul Simon is an awesome performer as well!! Anyway, the point of posting this here is... my mother pointed out a figure standing to the side of the stage during Bob's set. Well, after some staring through binoculars until the light was right, I realized that this figure was none other than Jakob! I thought that was cute that on father's day Jake was standing there watching his pops. :-) Well, that's all I needed to say. Lindsey
Subject: Concert In Anaheim From: "John D. Williams" firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 17:02:57 -0500 June 20, 1999 Anaheim, California I do recall thinking as I looked around me at the other concert goers ÷ "I wonder which are the rude rmd-ers? They all look friendly enough to me." My new-found friends on one side, my dragged along but happy-to-be-there wife on the other, a bit of chit-chat, an offer of binoculars if I could grasp them made, and then a flickering of lights from the overhanging apparatus, as if a bargain sale was being announced at the local everything store, and Bob and the band were ON! Hallelujah, we were ready to go. This strange little blue-grass hymn would certainly confound the editors of the Philadelphia Inquirer, who had chosen to run a picture of a lasciviously grinning Dylan to illustrate their article on "greedy stars", as though they had bagged the greediest of all and exposed him for all his worth. http://www.phillynews.com:80/inquirer/99/May/30/front_page/SFX30.htm So this Dylan is a "star" again? No, the real Dylan seemed to be opening a different door and the real Dylan is real indeed. There is not much artifice to these shows. The music is there to propel the voice and DylanÔs presence is not so much the performer above than Uncle Benny offering the eight year old boys a chance to punch him in the stomach to show how tough he is. As Bob pulled out the harp later in the show, his hands reached toward the crowd as if to say, "Ya wanna give to me? Ya think you got what it takes? Here! Lemme show you how!" And the harmonica wailed. The acoustic (with band) Mr. Tambourine Man was of course revised and rearranged, rather mournful, and syncopated with verbal nuance. More haunted, frightened trees than skipping wheels of rhyme. Followed by a hypnotic and focused Masters of War, which reached a dizzying fright as he wished for death. By now the music had taken over the hall and there was really nothing else. I did look through the binoculars and find I must recommend the experience. For those used to close up shots on TV (like me), I do suppose that Dylan is a bit intimidated by the camera ÷ which I suppose accounts for his frequent closing of eyes. Which I had previously accounted for this by his being close to the song, I find that while no less entranced in person, he chews his words like a horse. Not meant to sound unflattering, he has the look of a natural beast. A stubborn one at that. He has many looks. It is almost bizarre to watch the Chaplin-meets-James Dean movements that are natural to him and can be seen from photos of his youth. A prudish part of me whispers, really, at his age! But then this ragged clown snaps around as if timeless ÷ and becomes a carnival barker to the strangest snake oil show on earth, while he simply holds out one hand and shuffles across the stage, harp in the other, laughing halfway off his heels, a look of sinister coil wrapped behind that curious old man smile. A comedian I overheard the next day opined that Dylan had been touring since the revolutionary war. DylanÔs age has now become a regular feature of his public joke along with his voice, which the comedian had (humorously if not truthfully) relegated to two groans. Of course, Dylan is infinite in his groans and infinity seems to be settling in his age as well. While the TV man worries about his hair, Dylan simply avoids TV. There is not much prettiness to the show. The back lit slides are primitive. A light that threw huge shadows of the band behind them drew huge cheers from the crowd but as an effect was only a bit more defined than your own candle and hand animal show. It seemed appropriate not to find too much awe in color or spectacle. The show was Dylan. So one had to look pretty hard. And to listen. But that part was easy. The songs were stunning. All of them were masterpieces. With the possible exception of Not Fade Away, which was certainly at least, a glorious thumping noise. Lights up, lights down. Dylan introduces a "profound young man" (Ha! Ha!), Paul Simon, and towers over him as intelligent songwriter comes on the stage. They are so curious together. Dylan by this time seems almost maniacal, even when standing still, and Simon so serious. It is a twisted Laurel and Hardy. Or perhaps the Joker teaming up with the Penguin. But DylanÔs and SimonÔs reading of Sounds of Silence is haunting. Under DylanÔs lead, the song is cast adrift from the thoughtful pop market it at once decried yet was a part of, and it becomes in THIS song, a curious appendix to the journey of the man who walked through streets that were dead. Wonderful harmony as well. Simon did not shirk from the challenge. A quick heartfelt tribute then from the two of them to Cash and Elvis and all before them in the two song medley of I Walk The Line and Blue Moon of Kentucky and then Knocking on HeavenÔs Door. The last lines are an epiphany, really staggering . Not so much sung as insinuated, in a Hank Williams slur, it is the fool who sings Sign Of The Cross (and I mean this quite literally for those who want to hear what I heard) who now feels like he is knocking on HeavenÔs door. ___ The Simon show began in earnest following the set up of his band. I am told that the duets were better done tonight with DylanÔs band than the previous night with SimonÔs band. Which I glad for. I am told that Dylan overall, was better the previous night, having to work from second place to outdo Simon. And playing more songs. I hope I can make my own judgement someday. I do not know how effective a tape plead will do here ÷ but I plead! Does anyone have copies of these shows? For the record (my record anyway), the Simon show was terrific! Yes, Simon is a thoughtful entertainer, as much pop as art, but he really is quite good and very accessible. Now we got to see a professional light show, interesting back screens and rehearsed stage postures, all good! Mrs. Robinson was a particular stand out. These were not refried versions of old songs, by the way. All had been attenuated, rearranged, worked out for the new band with the new sound (well, the 20 years old new sound) of Simon with neat percussions and great horns (which were VERY loud). But it was a bit like following a dry wine with Coca-Cola. John D. 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