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Bob Dylan 970429 in Muncie, Illinois

Subject: 4/29/97 Muncie Review
From: Ken Kleber (
Date: Wed, 30 Apr 1997 02:39:55 -0500

	My girlfriend and I made the drive into Muncie from Champaign, IL
and arrived a few hours before showtime.  The scene around the venue was
pretty dead so we checked out the Ball State campus.  Nothing too
exciting.  The doors for will-call opened a few minutes after 7 p.m. and
we got our tickets with some time to spare.  Security going in was
non-existant.  It consisted of a few friendly old ladies.  I didn't notice
anybody taping, but I'm sure somebody managed to get some gear in.  Hell,
you could have walked in with a Coke machine and no one would have
noticed.  The venue was pretty cool about letting people dance in the
aisles and I didn't see/hear a single person get yelled at.  Anyhow, on
with the show... 

#1:  Sweet Marie
	The sound in this little hall was very nice.  Bob came out with a 
white leather (?) jacket and a pair of black pants with a stripe down the 
leg.  He wore a white cowboy hat which remained on throughout the 
evening.  As was the case with many songs throughout the evening, few people 
recognized this one.  I thought it was nicely done, although I was hoping 
for Not Fade Away.  Oh well.

#2:  Man In The Long Black Coat
	This one was a bit of a surprise for me.  Bob's voice was in fine 
shape; the vocals were crystal clear on this one.

#3:  Watchtower
	What is there to really say?  It was well-jammed and got the 
crowd going.  I really can't understand how he can play this one every 
night without getting sick of it.  

#4:  You Ain't Goin' Nowhere
	Having never heard this one live, I was kind of impressed.  The a 
capella ending was a nice touch.  Most of the crowd seemed to be into 
this one.

#5:  I Don't Believe You
	Bob seemed to really be enjoying himself during this one.  I must 
confess--I don't like this song so I'll just say it was well-played.

#6:  Silvio
	Not much to report here.  Nicely done.

#7:  Roving Gambler (acoustic)
	This was the one I'd been waiting for.  And wow!  I loved every 
minute of it.  It's one of those songs I swear I've heard before, yet I 
can't quite place it.  The crowd really loved this one.  This is the best 
thing to happen to the acoustic "set" in a long time.  

#8:  Tambourine Man (acoustic)
	This was also excellent.  The tempo seemed a bit faster than the 
1995 and 96 versions I've heard and the vocals were much clearer than in 
the past.  I really like this song.

#9:  Tangled Up (acoustic)
	This tune rounded out an amazing acoustic "set".  Bob really 
jammed this one out and the crowd absolutely loved it.  One interesting 
note:  Bob sang "I *know* you know my name..." instead of the usual 
line.  It was pretty cool.  The ending was jammed out hard!

#10:  Maggie's Farm
	Well-played, but again, as much as I hate to admit it, I don't 
really care for this tune.  Bob seemed to be having a good time, though.

#11:  This Wheel's on Fire
	This one brought the crowd into their seats.  I enjoyed it 
although I didn't really recognize it at first.  Having never heard Bob's 
versions, I was expecting it to sound a bit more like The Band's 
recording.  Anyhow, it was nice to finally hear Bob sing this one.

#12:  Pillbox Hat
	Wow!  I like this arrangement.  Bob jammed this one out extra 
hard for us.  He was even strutting his stuff for the people in the first 
few rows.  It was incredible.

#13:  I Shall Be Released [E1]
	This was nicely done.  Not much else to say.

#14:  Don't Think Twice (acoustic) [E2]
	Another fabulous acoustic number.  The jam at the end was great.  
I love this song.  

#15   RDW [E3]
	Just as Bob was about to start singing, a young girl jumped on 
the stage and gave him a big (and I mean big) kiss.  He didn't start the 
lyrics on time because this girl was all over him.  Once he finally did 
start singing, she even helped him out a bit!  I was really surprised at 
how long she stayed on the stage (both verses and a few minutes 
afterwards).  Bob seemed to like it at first, but then got a bit 
annoyed.  She left and another girl came up for a quick kiss.  This one 
was extra-long because of his two "guests".  He really brought down the 
house here.  

A few final notes:
	*Bob did not play the harp at all.  I was a bit disappointed, but 
he seemed to be into a guitar-jam mood.
	*No band introductions.
	*I liked Larry Campbell's playing, although he was given very 
little room to solo.  
	*The show was not a sell-out.  There were a few empty rows behind 

	***If anyone taped this concert, please get in touch with me.  I'd
love to hear from you and have much to trade.  Thanks. 

Subject: 4.29.97 - Ball State University From: "Any day now...any day now...I shall be released..." ( Date: 30 Apr 97 15:29:13 -0500 Wow - I was surprised that no one had gotten to this show before I did. Good fun. First, a caveat. I'm more of a Deadhead than a regular Dylan concertgoer, so many of the song titles I had to guess. On the other hand, I was surprised that I knew so many of the songs played at Ball State. Any song that I didn't know the title is marked with *asterisks*. Let's hope I guessed properly. If I had absolutely NO clue as to the name of the song, I wrote "Unknown" for the title - how scientific! Here goes nothing. :-) ELECTRIC: Sweet Marie Man in the Long Black Coat All Along the Watchtower You Ain't Going Nowhere Unknown Unknown ACOUSTIC: *Gambling Man* Mr. Tambourine Man Tangled Up in Blue ELECTRIC: Maggie's Farm *If Your Memory Serves You Well* Unknown 12-Bar Blues ENCORE (ELECTRIC) : I Shall Be Released ENCORE 2 (ACOUSTIC) : Don't Think Twice, It's Alright ENCORE 3 (ACOUSTIC) : Rainy Day Women Great show. As I said, this was my first Dylan concert - and was quite a wonderful experience. The crowd was pretty relaxed with the exception of the freaks along the left aisle that kept rushing the stage. There was a large group that rushed the stage during Tangled (and stayed there for the rest of the show), but that was the only major event of stupidity that I could see. Bob was dressed in a white suitcoat - white shirt underneath with a black tie. A white cowboy hat completed the ensemble - and made him look like Colonel Sanders, if you ask me. The entire concert lasted right around 90 minutes. It was hard to hear the vocals during the first few songs, so I crumpled up some paper for makeshift earplugs. All was well. Great show. The band was tight, and Bob's voice was in good shape. Not a lot to say other than the fact that I really enjoyed it. I was in the 12th row, so my view of the stage was wonderful, even when you figure in the large group that crashed the stage. One girl did manage to make it on stage during Rainy Day Women -- and just STOOD there. Didn't sing - didn't do anything. Brilliant! Bob tried to get her to sing along, but I think the spectacle of the whole thing psyched her out once she was on stage. He even tried to nudge her into the microphone, but she jumped when he did. Duh. This is why I love Indiana. After the first girl was embarrassed beyond belief, another one hopped up and danced around a little. When the third tried it, security grabbed her and led her off. So much for night life on the campus of Ball State University. That's all folks! Steve P.S. My buffer's been giving me fits throughout this posting - so's it ain't my fault if this posting looks like Helter Skelter. Thank you for your support.
Subject: Review of Muncie 4/29 From: Mark Peterson (markpeterson@WORLDNET.ATT.NET) Date: Thu, 1 May 1997 03:12:20 -0500 Hello everyone. It's been a long time since I have posted to the group. I had to change providers because of long-distance charges (ouch)!! Anyway you live and learn I guess. This was my seventh Dylan show, the last two I saw were Dubuque and Davenport in November of last year. This is my first review even though I have been on the list for quite some time. Please forgive me if I ramble, I am not a writer that's for sure, but I'll make this long and detailed just like the reviews I enjoy. I attended the show with my sister who is a freshman at Ball State, she was the second girl who got onstage (more on that later). It was the first time I had been to the school and it's nice enough I guess. We got to the place about 40 minutes before showtime. I was expecting many people to already be inside but that was not the case. In fact 25 minutes before the show the place was not even half full. My sister talked to one of her friends who worked behind the scenes and he said that there were 1000 tickets left, (it seats 3575) however it looked like a near sell-out by the time it began. A very clean looking venue, they didn't sell beer or refreshments of any kind. Nice acoustics too I was told. A sober crowd too, I smelled the sacred herb once in the bathroom but that was it. Actually I got a rather conservative vibe from everyone, no one was overly excited, they had no idea what was in store for them!! It was a typically diverse crowd, interestingly enough only 800 hundred tickets were sold to students, I think that's a pretty sad commentary. Anyway you guys have got too hear about my seats. First row in the orchestra pit. The entire time I was sitting there before the show I was so anxious I almost became nauseas, no kidding! I was directly in front of where Larry would soon be, about five feet away. The stage was only about four feet off the ground. Well I was pumped to say the least, I figured there would be fellow fanatics around me but they all claimed to be casual fans. Well, I just stood up and leaned against the stage like security with a dopey grin looking at the venue fill up. Talk about seventh heaven! Soon enough the lights dim and our boys take the stage amidst clouds of incense. Dress: Bob in black pants with white stripe down the side, white boots with black heels, white jacket black Colonel Sanders tie and the white cowboy hat, of course. Bill Monroe-esque you might say. Tony was pimpin' as usual, Bucky in all black and black hat, Larry looking like Antonio Banderas as my sister pointed out. David kind of reminds me of the "I love you man" beer commercial guy. He was wearing Nike kicks, I guess he didn't get Bob's memo on hipster dress. Oh well, who cares. The Show: One word: fantastic! Unfortunately I've got a few more words to say :-) I didn't take notes but I was completely sober so my memory should serve me well. However, I could attribute things that happened during one song to another song. Alright let's see how this turns out!! Absolutely Sweet Marie- Great opener, laid back. My biggest concern was that I was going to have trade proximaty for sound and I was right. I pretty much heard the show from their monitors which sounded clear and fine but not that loud and mixed you might say. Also Bob's vocal were very low to my ear. In fact, it wasn't until later in the show that he sang loud enough to hear well. Yes, there is a new set up. Tony is now about where Bucky used to be, kind of obscured, and Bucky is off to the side up front. He had two mikes set up, one for sitting and one for standing that was lined up with Bob and Larry's mikes. Bob still has that useless harmonica mike that totally blocked his mouth from my sight when he sang. That's my only visual complaint. Oh yeah, back to the song. Near the end Bob nodded to Larry who then stepped on one of the four pedals he had set up, it seemed to make his guitar louder while he noodled something that resembled a solo. Side Bar: Larry I immediatly liked him, I was skeptical going in but I enjoyed his clean, crisp riffing. He sure did study Bob's hands like people have been saying. Very uptight, he relaxed and similed more as the night progressed. I can't wait until he gets completely confident. There are going to be some really great shows in the future. Man In the Long Black Coat- Nice, similar to '96 version, Dylan's getting warmed up, he was scanning the crowd. Watchtower- Same old same old but still something mystical about Bob Dylan performing it mere feet away. Bob begins to sweat during this song, kind of early tonight I think :-) You Ain't Going Nowhere- I was hoping and planning for this one. I shouted for it just in case though. Great bouncy, country feel to it. Down into the easy chair is right! A cappella ending. Thanks Bob! Worth the trip just to hear that in person, but more highlights to come. I Don't Believe You- Starts out like what you would expect but then the jams at the end begin which bring it to another level. The jams: they got better and more intense as the night wore on. I think the playing, especially Bob's defined the show. Silvio- I just love this song. I have to admit it was kind of getting old untill I heard this version. I liked Larry's playing on this one. They dropped the "breakdown" or whatever you want to call it when just one guitar would play between verses weird like for a few seconds. Everyone still sings along on the chorus. Personal highlight, my sister liked it a lot too. Roving Gambler-Wow! You could tell Bob enjoyed this one. An utterly charming performance. I'd love to hear this again. Again laid back yet spirited. A definite highlight. Mr. Tambourine Man- Nice but I've heard some '95 versions that will be hard to surpass. I wished David would have left for this one, he just kept a beat, didn't hurt but added little to nothing. A harmonica solo would have been great, there was none at all tonight. There was a slide show of old photos during the acoustic set. The last image was of Allen Ginsberg and I could swear I saw Bob discreetly tip his hat at the photo, I know I did. Tangled Up in Blue- I think I heard a different opening riff. Everyone went nuts for this one. David's drums kicked in to great effect. People then jumped over the "wall" into the pit for the stage rush. It was here that Bob got visibly excited at the adoration and rewarded us with a kick ass version and LOTS of jamming. Maggie's Farm-Believe it or not this was another highlight. I always have believed the best moments at a Dylan show are the one's you are least expecting. I mean what's so big about Maggie's right? Well, Larry's playing was wonderful. This electric set seemed to be a lot louder too. It seemed that Larry was actually surprised at how this turned out. He beamed a wide smile in the middle of this one. Bob (can't forget about him) was really interacting with the crowd by now. Direct eye contact with people, in the first few rows. By this time I had made eye contact with him several times, but now when he did he gave a shy smile and looked like he was trying to hold in a bigger one. This Wheel's On Fire- Great song, Great Performance, only thing missing was a harmonica solo in the middle. Again lot's of small smiles and dancing by him. Leopard Skin Pill Box Hat - My personal highlight of the evening. Before he started he was sifting through his harmonicas and seemed to put one aside. This was a jam from beginning to end. The most animated I have ever seen Bob Dylan. Guitar hero poses left and right. The whole band was really cooking. I mean jaw dropping guitar work by Bob. Long, long gone were the gummy, three note "solos". With his white boots and mannerisms, including what I'll describe as walking in place or marching while playing, he conjured up images of Chuck Berry. Unbelievable, I'll never forget it. Oh yeah, he didn't break out the harp, not that it was neccesarry, but a funny thing happened when I remembered that he readied one. I cupped my hands and shouted "hamonica" just for the hell of it and he happened to glance at me while I was yelling at him and stared at me 'cause he couldn't figure out what I was saying. So I then cupped my hands if I were playing harp and shrugged my shoulders trying to say "well how 'bout it" Bob looked at me and made a hilarious face as he shrugged off my suggestion. Another unforgettalble moment that's hard to describe. Whew! I Shall Be Released- Just beautiful. An emotional yet understated delivery. More great playing by everyone. I just couldn't believe what a great show I was seeing. Between encores I realized how uncomfortable I was after everyone rushed the stage and I became pinned. I still have my wallet so it's alright. It's also cool that no one jumped on stage and ruined any songs. Don't Think Twice-Great playing by everyone once again. Tony was playing some bong-rattlin' bass if I've ever heard it. Everybody was all smiles. Bob being really extroverted with his poses and quick darts. It seemed like he couldn't contain himself. I was happy for him. Rainy Day Women- My sister mentioned that she was thinking of going up on stage earlier in the show and I suggested she wait unit the last verse of the last song was sung so as not to piss anyone off. I forgot to mention that my sister was getting her share of smiles from Bob and in fact she thought Tony was trying to tell her to come up. Well another girl got up first and Dylan was goofin' with her. He put her in a half-nelson jokingly to get her to sing with him. She exited and then my sister went up and patted Bob and Tony on the back and quickly jumped back down. She later said she was embarassed because Bob sort of scurried away. Funny stuff. I discreetly snapped a few photos, hope they come out. Well that's about all I have to say. All in all I'll probably view this as the best show I've seen. We got a cue sheet and a couple of picks the roadie threw our way also. Kudos to the guys selling unofficial Dylan tie-dyes outside. Only 10 bucks. Good luck and Godspeed to all of us unfortunate souls in college about to begin finals. All of you with tickets to future shows are in for the time of your lives. I hope the energy level is high so the performer in Dylan shines through. It's a side of him that you won't believe! Later Mark Peterson
Subject: Muncie review #1 From: Dan Lapsley ( Date: Sat, 03 May 1997 12:27:00 -0700 Hi All: The following is the review of Bob's show at Ball State University (Muncie, Indiana), on April 29th, 1997, as it appeared in the "Ball State Daily News". The reviewer was Patrick Page, who did a very nice insert on Dylan's career the day before the concert (by the way). The opening paragraph refers to a girl who clamored on stage, gave Bob a hug and kiss (to Bob's wide-eyed delight), and who just stood there as if she was going to sing with Bob (who was grinding out some hot guitar lines, acting coy, tempting, inviting, it was quite a scene). (Headline) "Dylan, still viable, blows Ball State crowd away " "The only disappointment was the last duet. She should have sang the lyric--the crowd wanted it, the band wanted it and Bob Dylan himself sure was laughing it up. But she was bashful once she got up on stage. This last encore was "Rainy Day Women No. 12 and No. 35" (sic), and it took down the house. It seemd to be an open invitation to join Dylan on stage. There were even a few stage dives. Opening the show was a rockin' version of the fellow "Blonde on Blonde" tune "Absolutely Sweet Marie". It set the pace for a good night as Dylan easily passed Nine Inch Nails for the best show on campus in at least the last four years. The exceptional talent of the band made the show. They covered blues with an unbelievable take of "Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat', rock with "All Along the Watchtower" and a few country-flavored rock tracks. THey also ran a tag-team by switching instruments and dropping in a full acoustic set anchored by an awing rendition of "Tangled Up in Blue" Dylan covered much older material, including "Maggie's Farm" and "Don't Think Twice.." For those who think that Dylan can't be understood, he was very clear as "...She Acts Like We Never Have Met" and "I Shall Be Released" almost turned into sing-alongs. It wasn't just a rehashing of glorydays, though. Dylan's reworking of songs helped keep them alive and vibrant. It may keep the audience guessing for just a little bit as to what song is cooking up, but this is what a live performance should be. Repetition belongs to spinning CDs. The Ball State crowd was actually in the show--the three encores demanded by the masses proved that--and Dylan himself could be seen shining a smile. It was an electric atmosphere with a notable number dancing themselves down in the orchestra pit. Dylan is still viable, and be blew expectations. He proved that he isn't just someone to remember--he is still someone to see." ________________ Another review appeared in the "Muncie Star Press", and I will post that as "Muncie Review #2" as soon as I remember where I put it. Dan
Subject: Muncie anecdote From: Dan Lapsley ( Date: Sat, 03 May 1997 12:33:05 -0700 Last night I was talking to someone who also attended the April 29th show at Ball State University (Muncie, IN). He was seated in the third row just behind the "mosh pit" in front of the stage. Anyway, a security guard informed him that "Dylan's people" had instructed the security personnel to let people get up close to the stage "after the acoustic set". Sure enough, after the acoustic set, this security guard quietly encouraged folks to leave their seat to "sneak" up close to the stage. Bob was certainly playing off the frenetic dancing and energy close to the stage---I think, after all these years, Bob is starting to have fun as a rock star. My own experience in the mosh pit, however, was that while security was extremely lax, and many people (myself included) came down to the stage, I also saw security clamping down,too, and preventing some from leaping the barrier. Has anyone else heard of these "stage instructions"? Dan
Subject: Muncie review #2 From: Dan Lapsley ( Date: Sat, 03 May 1997 12:55:39 -0700 The following is the review of Bob's April 29th, 1997 show at Ball State University (Muncie Indiana). The show took place in the Emens Auditorium (seating,about 3,500). The review appeared in the Muncie "Star Press", on April 30th. The reviewer was Michelle Kinsey. The URL for the review is as follows: here ___________ Headline: "Dylan dynamic in Emens show" "I am not the world's biggest Bob Dylan fan. But I sat next to one at the Dylan concert Tuesday night at Ball State University's Emens Auditorium. This fan, who called himself The Mailman, was to serve as my guide for the evening. Mailman guessed he had seen Dylan at least a hundred times, which when compared to my one (not including the Emens show), made him the expert. This reviewer felt that Dylan delivered one of the most dynamic performances I've seen in quite a while. Mailman agreed. Dylan slowly strolled out onto the stage in a white cowboy hat, topping off a Western ensemble that included a white jacket, black cowboy tie and black pants with a pin stripe down each side. Fitting, because Dylan added a country tinge to most of the songs, including the opening "Absolutely Sweet Marie". Mailman said he'd been opening with that tune a lot lately. Good choice. It had enough energy to get everyone on their feet and keep them there. He and guitarist Larry Campbell traded leads often throughout the 2-hour show, with Dylan showing more emotion than his fellow musician during his turn. The strum of an acoustic guitar lead off a steamroller version of "All Along the Watchtower". Dylan took lead guitar honors during most of the song. I think he was smiling. Mailman said he rarely does that on stage. He played other songs that were familiar to the crowd of college students and Boomers. An acoustic version of "Tangled Up in Blue" (minus the harp) was well received. THen the band plugged back in for a high energy "Maggie's Farm" But the standouts might have been the lesser known gems--the rowdy "Silvio", the bluesy "Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat" and an acoustic crawl through "Roving Gambler". Mailman agreed. I could have sworn he had tears in his eyes during "I Don't Believe You". Through it all, the band watches Dylan intently. A nod from him will take the band to the bridge; another nod cuts a song short. His demeaner is calm,collected, even shy at times. But his emotions ooze from his fingers and drip from every word. He doesn't just sing a song. He feels it. So it doesn't matter whether his voice cracks a few times or he misses a few words. Another thing about Dylan: It's amazing that he can easily take a song that's 30 years old and make it sound new. I was unsure he was even playing "Mr Tambourine Man" until he started singing the first line. Of course, Mailman knew. Dylan's first encore was a warm and fuzzy "I Shall Be Released". The second encore was a hot "Don't Think Twice It's Allright". Dylan was more animated during this song, playing to the audience and bobbing up and down as he wailed on his Fender. In fact, he almost missed the ending of the song. And,yes, there was a third encore. He polished off the night with "Rainy Day Women #12 &35, and opportunity for the college students to yell out the chorus and a chance for a couple of girls to hop onto stage and dance a bit. I think he smiled again. But let's face it, a man sneaking up on 60 is usually dreaming of retirement, golf and a luxury condo in the Florida Keys. Not Dylan. He prefers to continue touring and playing some of the best music that have ever been scribbled down on paper. Which is a good thing. Somehow I can't picture Dylan in socks and flip flops.
Subject: Muncie show From: (00leonkey@BSUVC.BSU.EDU) Date: Sun, 4 May 1997 18:22:51 -0500 I thought I'd throw in some belated comments on the Muncie show. It sure was strange to have Dylan play about 100 yards from my office, and a short walk from my home. Very exciting atmosphere around the Ball State English department leading up to the show. There were lots of faculty in attendance. The band sounded great, and it was a treat to hear "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere" and "This Wheel's On Fire." It occurred to me as he was singing "Wheel's" that it's a great song for this time in Bob's career, the time when he's reclaimed his reputation as one of the greatest songwriters and performing artists of our time, but the only way you'd know it is if you saw him live. "Rolling down the road," indeed. The most common reaction I heard from folks who saw the show was "I was so glad he didn't suck" or "I was really worried that he'd be bad." It seems that Dylan has disappointed lots of his fans over the last decade or so, but people were really into the show. Bob was very expressive that night all throughout the show, and people really responded to his energy. Besides "Wheel's," highlights for me were "I Don't Believe You" and "Roving Gambler." Wish Dylan would hit the road and just play with the acoustic band sometime. Anyway, not _everyone_ in the English department was happy. Here's a letter to the editor that appeared in the Ball State DAILY NEWS on Friday:
"Dylan has sold out to a boorish, swaying, arm-waving mockery of his former following. Pandering to a new generation of louts not born when he was in his heyday, this fading legend exhibited his feet of clay in a bombastic, cowboy-hatted parody of his former greatness. The "concert" of April 29 (in the current vernacular) "sucked." The icon's lyrics, when drowned out by mindless whooping and hollering, were unintelligible and inexplicably rendered in a decidedly lame attempt at "originality" (or "artistic license"). As a long-time fan, a one-time idolater, and a paying customer, I feel cheated. I want my memories and my money back. Lamentably, more so than ever, the times, they are a-changing."
All I got to say to that is, "If your mem'ry serves you well, You'll remember you're the one That called on me to call on them To get you your favors done. And after ev'ry plan had failed And there was nothing more to tell You knew that we would meet again, If your mem'ry served you well." This wheel shall explode, lauren