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Bob Dylan 2000.07.08 in Maryland Heights, MO

Riverport Amphitheater, 14141 Riverport Dr.
Capacity: 21,000

Subject: review July 8 Maryland Heights (long)
From: Martin Abela
Date: Sun, 09 Jul 2000 05:19:40 GMT

If you are attending a concert at Riverfront Amphitheatre, make
sure you leave your religious pamphlets at home.  There is a huge
sign in the parking lot listing all the items which are not
permitted. One of them is missle (sic) like objects.

This amusing spelling error was symbolic of the oppressive
atmosphere in the Riverfront Amphitheatre parking lot, a striking
contrast with last night's Deadhead festival outside Sandstone.
Here there were no signs of the tailgate parties, or roving
Daiquiri vendors. No doubt this was because of the numerous
police officers on motorized mini-bikes who seemed to pop up
every few minutes.

There were long queues at the admission booths.  Since we had
arrived about 6:30, this was a concern since we expected Bob to
be on stage shortly after 7.

The long lines were due to the fact that every patron, (including
your corespondent) was frisked by one of several women at the
gate.  She did not object to anything I was carrying (although I
did have a small booklet - sort of Missal-like!) so I entered
without a hassle.  My travelling buddy Edwin and I were in our
third row centre seats by 7:15.

We were very excited about the concert in St. Louis, because we
were lucky enough to have third row centre seats.  We knew this
would be a special night on our three day excursion to the
Mid-west to follow Bob Dylan.

However, we could not have foreseen our good luck. ONe of the
venue security staff informed us that Bob's people wanted to have
the first three rows of people to be standing at the rail, sort
of like general admission.  Edwin and I quickly moved up, and I
parked my self right at the rail, where I stayed for the

The excitement built as the familiar smell of incense drifted
around us.  Bob was soon introduced, and the band opened with the
same few songs as he has been playing lately:

Oh Babe, It Ain't No Lie and To Ramona, which was nicer than last
night, with clearer enunciation. Third was Don't Think Twice,
It's Alright. Bob sang this one softly, almost purring out the

Tangled Up In Blue again featured a harmonica solo, with positive
response from the audience. This song, although played
frequently, continues to please both those who have seen a lot of
shows, and newcomers to Bob's live performances.

Searching For A Soldiers Grave followed. Bob clearly takes this
song seriously, singing carefully and with feeling. It does not
get much reaction (since it is such a serious song, I suppose)
but does get good applause at the end.

" that Country Pie!" as Bob sings.  I love this song, and
watching Bob play it. He is enjoying this whimsical song. 
Charlie Sexton did some amazing electric guitar picking on this
one.  Bob is really letting this talented guitar player shine.
After Country Pie, Bob approached the microphone. He said "I
played St. Louis in 1959. IT was a place called 'The Laughing
Buddha'. I want to dedicate that last song to that particular
place.". I suppose the year is an exaggeration, but was there
really a folk club called the Laughing Buddha?

Next up was "..Memphis Blues..".  Bob really started to get more
animated now, singing the lyrics with expression, winking at
people in the audience, and playing some fine lead guitar.

This led into the only real surprise tonight, "Simple Twist of
Fate".  Arching eyebrows, and flashes of smiles to highlight
certain lyrics in this one.

Drifters Escape was the highlight of the show for me.  The song
really rocks, and includes a great harmonica solo.  It is great
to see Bob re-interpreting songs from his back catalogue this

During the band intros, Bob delivered a David Kemper joke: "David
was going to be a doctor, but he did note have any patience".

Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat was the last song before the encore. 
Things Have Changed, Like a Rolling Stone and Forever Young for
an encore, with Highway 61 as a bit of an afterthought. The band
members were waiting for the word from Bob, before I saw him
mouth "Highway" to Tony..

Rollicking good song, as usual.  Afterwards, Bob and the boys
stood at attention, while the crowd gave a rousing ovation, and
another show is history.

Martin Abela
Maryland Heights, Missouri
July 9, 2000

-Martin Abela
                  "And she takes your voice
                   And leaves you howling at the moon"

2000: March - April - May - June - July