Bob Dylan 971107 in Columbus, Ohio
Veterans Memorial Auditorium Showtime: 8 PM Ticket prices: $29.50 and $26.50
Subject: Columbus Review(Long) From: Ig moon (firstname.lastname@example.org) Date: 8 Nov 1997 18:26:05 GMT My wife and I arrived at the show at around 7:30 p.m. Will milled around the lobby drinking beer and checking out the crowd. I was bummed because I didn't bring enough cash to but the H-way61 baseball hat. They didn't have any at the last show I saw and they wouldn't take credit cards at this one. Oh well I guess I'll have to go to another show. On to the show. Diana and I went to our seats around 8:00. A friend and her sister were going to me us there and still had not made it. One male and three females, who said the Dylan crowd is mostly male. "ladies and Gentlemen please welcome Columbia recording artist..." 8:10 Mary and Ronnie still hadn't made it. 1. Maggie's Farm - Bob and the band ripped into this before the lights even came up. sounds very good for thee opening number Bob's already loose and posing w/his Strat.(guess he got tired of that heavy Gibson from the Summer tour) Bob's looking pretty spiffy. Long Black Coat,matching pants,white shirt,tie and a vest underneath. I'm sure this outfit had to get hot. 2. Be Not A Stranger(?) - Not sure if that's what this track is called but That's what I'm calling it. Bob always seems to throw me for a loop on at least one song. Crowd sits down during this one and w/the exception of between songs and the few rude people who can't seem sit despite the people around them asking them to sit. But let's not get into that again. 3. Cold Irons Bound - I've been wanting for this one. From my first listen of TOOM I though this was going to be a great live rocker. It is. Bob's got it right in the third slot. The band is really getting into it. The crowds reaction, although still sitting, seems possitive. For me this song is a highlight. Mary and Ronnie straggle in and complain about the traffic. 4. Under The Red Sky - Wow!! Say what you want about this album, I like it and this track is right behind TV Talking Song for me. I haven't seen Bob do this Since 1990 when he was touring for this album. Bob's Starting each verse slow and then rushing the end. Classic Bob delivery. 5. Can't Wait - Band gets into a groove on this one. Crowd doesn't seem as receptive to this as Cold Irons. They play this pretty close to the CD. Mary takes a peek at my set list annd gets excited that Silvio is next 6. Silvio - I never tire of this one. I know a lot of people want Bob to drop this But I like it. It's now in it's third version. Early takes Close to Down IN The Groove. second version with the tight Harmonies and break down during the choruses, and now they've added the Trippy jam at the end to hear a great version of thiss check out 4-18-97 Albany. Tonight's version is good but the Harmonies just aren't there. 7. Roving Gambler (acc) - Bob played this in Blossum in the Summer I was hoping For Cocaine or Steel Walls, However, The harmonies are much better than Silvio and the crowd really seems to enjoy this one. I wonder for how many is this the first time they've heard it. I'm excited for them. 8. Tangled Up In Blue (acc) - From the first few notes the crowd spots this one and cheers right into the first few lines. Bob gives a smile while delivering the lines. I feel bad for Bob cause everyone's sitting But Bob Doesn't seem to care. By the end of the some the crowd is up on their feet dancing and clapping finally. BOb plays some nice Guitar work here. He played this really well at Blossum also. I never get tired of this. Tangled UuuuP..........innn.....Bluuuuuuue. 9. To Ramona (acc) - WOW! I was not expecting this one at all. Crowd retires to their seats and Bob delivers a powerful version. Diana's a bit upset, she was hoping for Tambourine Man. So she heads for the bathroom as she was holding out in case he played it. After this one ends Mary asks me was that one called. She really liked it and had never heard it before. I love it when someone finds a new song. 10. Till I fell In Love W/You - I must confess I went to the head during this one. I walked bye a guy having a cig in the lobby and he was singing along so the new stuff is definitely growing. I could hear the band the whole time and they sound really bluesy. Bob was hitting the Barrrr parts. Tatata Barr. If that makes sense. I got back before it was over and Bob was bending and posing pretty well. 11. This Wheel's on Fire - Bob really gets into this one. Some people are standing and dancing but the majority still isn't there. Good version thiss just isn't one of my favourites. Bob Says "Thank You....(Something).....Having a good Time" Introduces Band 12. Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat - YES!! One of my all time favourites. I requested this in the Summer and got it twice now. The crowd finally gets to it's feet again. Everyone is dancing and jumping. A few people try to rush the stage but their aren't enough of them to make it work and security grabs them. Bob is really jamming this one and delivering the lines with bite. Someone down in front was holding up a sign but I couldn't see it. Was It R.M.D. or a request. encores 13. Like A Rolling Stone - Bob leaves comes back I can remember when we were lucky to get an encore now it just seems standard. Sort of steals the thunder of brinng him back out. If he went for 17 I'd be really impressed, not that this crowd deserves it. Those opening chords are the best in rock and roll. The crowd is singing along and getting into it. Bob asking How Does it Feeeeeel. Bob leaves and comes back 14. It Ain't Me Babe (acc) - I had left this spot open on my set list. Nice choice Bob. I really love this one Right up there in my top ten. This version moves along fairly quick. Would love to hear Bob do it w/out the band. Bob and band leave. 15. Love Sick - Again Bob returns. Bucky is making the opening sounds on the lap steel and doing it very well. Crowd Stays standing but responce is not as good as the other TOOM tracks. I think this song would do better in the heart of the show. Leave the encores for the more familiar stuff. Just my opinion though. Band doesn't leave 16. Alabama Getaway - I've seen Bob do this before. he always Rocks it up. House lights come up crowd moves into aisles. People really enjoy this one. Lots of Dead heads in the crowd spinning and dancing. Bob and the boys really jam this one it seems like they don't want to stop. But alas they did. Over all a great show. I wish the crowd had been in better spirits. They presold tickets to CAPA members so most of the front seats were occupied by the theater opera set. But Bob didn't let it get to him. His lead playing was very good. He sounded better in August but still he is a ton better than 3 or 4 years ago. Bob seems to really be enjoying himself. When he walked off he had a spring in his steep. Later Iggi "Try to be pure at heart, they arrest you for robbery, Mistake your shyness for aloofness, your silence for snobbery" BD
Subject: Dylan in Columbus 1997 From: Greg Wallace (email@example.com) Date: 8 Nov 1997 15:52:03 GMT A truly zany audience last night in Columbus. Around me the crowd was pretty young and there was quite a lot of Beatlemania screaming between songs (!) The show ran from 8:10 to 10 PM or so. Best songs were This Wheel's on Fire, Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat, and Love Sick, all of which were loud and dramatically presented. Wheels and Love Sick were much stronger than the recordings. The local reviewer heard and experienced the show about the same way I did and had plenty of time to submit his review. Tangled Up in Blue was good, though not the brilliant performance we got in 1996. Bob could have sent the crowd through the roof with Tambourine Man but he opted for a waltzing To Ramona, which he really struggles to sing now (I heard him do a splendid Ramona in 1989). Like a Rolling Stone was a similar vocal to Unplugged, though not quite as inspired or successful. Can't Wait was much better in concert than on TOOM because Dylan dispensed with half the lyrics and the weird James McMurtry affectations. Full house, wild crowd. Young enough to say Bob's back all over again.
Subject: Columbus Set List From: David Davis (firstname.lastname@example.org) Date: Sat, 08 Nov 1997 02:57:45 -0500 1. Maggies Farm 2. ?? I won't be a stranger over there?? (Somebody help me here) 3. COLD IRONS BOUND 4. Under The Red Sky 5. CAN'T WAIT 6. Silvio 7. Roving Gambler@ 8. Tangled Up In Blue@ 9. To Ramona@ 10. 'TILL I STARTED LOVING YOU 11. This Wheels On Fire 12. Leopard-skin Pill-box Hat 13. Like A Rolling Stone 14. It Ain't Me Babe 15. LOVESICK 16. Alabama Getaway Raining assholes and pitchforks all pm in Columbus Ohio. Vets fairly sold up, still some high balcony at box office. Not many tickets in parking lot. Bob and band come on at about 8:10pm, regular old Maggies with good jam. I don't know the second song, kinda has a gospel feel, something about I won't be a stranger when I go over. Go ahead and make fun and ridicule me, I CAN TAKE IT. Cold Irons Bound very good again tonight then we got Under the Red sky. Can't Wait had great Bob vocals, all over the place, the song is already morphing. Bob clearly really likes Silvio. He kept looking at someone in the front row stage (HIS) left. Smiling mugging and kinda pointing his guitar. The ad lib jam in TUIB was very powerful and worked well, still got Truckdrivers. To Romona was a nice surprise. Ended the first part with LPBH with a splendid quitar time had by Larry and Bob. Finished the show with Alabama, Lights up and everybody dancing. NOTES FROM THE HIGH SEATS We were way up in the Balcony, but we had an unobstructed view down on to the stage and we had a GREAT set of high dollar Binoculars, and I got to see some stuff that I had not noticed before like; Bob had french cuffs on his shirt with cufflinks. Everyone had a set list close by. Bob is singing into 2 microphones side by side, one looks like an older kind of deal. Larry Campbell does have an effects board on the floor right up next to the drum stand, he never touches it during a song but may tinker when the lights are down. It seems like Bobs guitar may run through this board. The drummer has black NIKE shoes like the Heavens Gate folks. Is that thing to BB's left a Keyboard? Bob's shiny patent leather shoes have white piping. Larry was capoed up two frets on TUIB David
Subject: 8 thoughts after the Columbus show From: email@example.com Date: 9 Nov 1997 04:17:15 GMT I've seen 20-30 Bob shows since 1988. I've seen 2 shows (Blossom & Columbus) since Bob acquired Larry Campbell. After yesterday's show in Columbus, I think: 1. Every show seems to be more and more like an artwork that the artist allows us to watch him create and then leaves behind in our hearts and minds. Almost as if Picasso were traveling around leaving different works of art in his wake, both masterpieces and minor works. 2. Larry Campbell is fitting in well. At first I missed JJ horribly. After yesterday, I've learned that LC is very sensitive to each song. Perhaps a bit less flamboyant and ballsy than JJ, but more aware of specific sounds and phrases that add to each piece. 3. Bob is in excellent shape both physically (from what I could see) and vocally. His vocal command is amazing when you take the time to listen to the NOTES that he hits and WHEN he hits them. Almost like watching a great jazz saxophonist on top of his game. Awesomely aware. 4. The sound man is getting good, real good. Knowing when to bump up the bass or pedal steel. 5. Kemper is also beautifully sensitive to the music. 6. The crowds are getting younger, bigger and more appreciative on the whole than they were in years past. Loud applause after each song, occasional standing ovations. 7. Bob is perhaps as crafty of a guitarist as he is a vocalist. His ability to maintain conceptual continuity in his solos throughout the night is entertaining and at times amazing. Just when you think he may have gotten lost in a phrase he wraps it up neatly with a signature lick that has been heard in passing throughout the night (and at times, throughout the last few years!). 8. I am grateful to be witnessing firsthand such a tremendous artist at such a peak in his career. Peace, Tom firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Columbus Ohio 11/7/97 Bob Dylan show review (long, very long) From: Jeff Knorek (email@example.com) Date: Tue, 11 Nov 1997 00:05:16 -0500 11/7/97 Veterans Memorial Auditorium Columbus, OH Ahhhh...after two weeks on the road and camping down south in October, we get a short and sweet road trip to catch two Dylan shows. We missed all the Southern dates by mere days (our plans and time off from work were cast in concrete about 72 hours before Dylan announced the fall tour...DOAH!!!). So it was nice to cut out for an early weekend and be home on Sunday night. And what a weekend. The crew this trip we myself, Kish, our friend Mike, and our three kittens; Sparks, Mr. Sun Bear, and Petite Le Mew. The kits love road trips in out mini van, Gypsy Blue. We were to meet my friend Jennifer in Columbus, who was also kind enough to pick up our tickets. After a late departure from Ann Arbor, a frustratingly glacial pace through two traffic jams and then a harrowing drive into a hard rain at nightfall, we finally arrived at Jennifer's house. All of the relaxation time that I had budgeted for before the show was squandered by all the fun on the road, so we had to immediately dash off into the rain again only to be caught in yet another traffic jam a few blocks away from our destination. It turns out that Widespread Panic was playing at the Palace Theater, only two blocks from the Vets, which accounts for all the traffic (and the dearth of Neo-Hippies at the Dylan show, who were busily waving their fingers in the air and hawking "Koind" veggie burritos in front of The Palace). We scurried off the main drag and found a parking spot on a side street...it was now about show time and we had several blocks to hump on over to the Auditorium door. But fast tracks were ours to be had; tickets were torn and directions to our section were given, and just as we were getting settled in our seats the house lights went down. Whew! That's cutting it just a little too close for my comfort... Moments later "Columbia Recording Artist" Bob Dylan was introduced, the crowd goes wild, and with the crack of a drum the stage lights come up; he opens with: 1. Maggie's Farm The mix was as close to perfect as can be expected at a Dylan show, right from the git. Having been spoiled by Dan Healy for too long, I got used to hearing Jerry Garcia on the right and Phil Lesh on the left and the rest of the Grateful Dead somewhere in between...at about 110 decibels. By contrast, Dylan's mix is usually pretty loud, sometimes too loud, especially if I'm anywhere from the 10th to 30th row. But there is no separation like there used to be at Dead shows, so the mix can get pretty scrambled. It is sometimes hard to pick individual instruments out of the sonic stew at Dylan shows. Tonight it was easy. Our seats this evening were in the center of the balcony, about 1/2 way back from the front (or about 4/5 the way back from the stage). We were dead center and the sound was great, a little boomy, but cupping the ears cured that. This far back in the hall the volume was juuuust right. It was nice to be able to HEAR Tony Garnier play bass for a change (he usually gets lost in the mix, IMHO). Anyways, _Maggie's Farm_ rocked and is a real solid show opener. Bob FINALLY has shed that stupid looking Stetson hat and was hatless. It is a lot easier to take him seriously without it. The crowd is pleased with the choice of _Maggie's Farm_ and it sets up a good vibe for the rest of the night; happy, groovin', cheerfully defiant..."I _ain't_ gonna work on Maggie's Farm no more". 2. Be Not A Stranger Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. I didn't have a clue as to what it was, but loved it just the same. It was like Bob Dylan meets the Carter Family or something...straight from Appalachia. On those occasions when we hear a song that we don't recognize I try to get real focused on it, which was difficult since we didn't have even a minute's break from the grind of the road before the show started and I hadn't unwound yet. But the harmonies and the tempo and the melody put me in the space I was yearning for. I figured that I could look up the title on Bill Pagel's fine website once we got back to Jennifer's house, so I didn't worry about having to ID it. I had a feeling that it was a Bustout, though. It was like Saturday night at the Grand ol' Opry, settin' 'round the radio in the living room. Too soon, it seems, and the song was over. 3. Cold Irons Bound YYYYYES! This is the one I'd been waiting for! ROCK! ROCK! When it appeared that this was the song to be in the #3 slot in the set on this tour, I listened to it over and over here at home. It is the only song on _Time Out Of Mind_ that makes me want to dance, and man, they just CRUSHED IT!!!!!! They even opened it with a short little space jam...talk about taking me home, oh Lord, and it was perfectly executed...Tony came in with the bass line after about 25 seconds or so; David Kemper (drums) and Larry Campbell (guitar) took control like it was their song, like they were playing it for keeps. They JAMMED. The band was tight, they were one. Rock and Roll? This is it: dark, growling, urgent, vital. Dylan seemed liked he really wanted to be where he was, and the sound was next to perfect. The night was shaping up to be one the best Dylan shows I've ever seen. Since the people behind us elected to sit down through all of this, Kish and I beat it for the back of the balcony were we could freak out and not bother anybody. The sound was somewhat boomier, but cupping the ears solved that. We spent the rest of the show there. 4. Under The Red Sky Again, another song I didn't recognize. Kish had to ID it for me, but I was in heaven...almost all the songs he was going to play this night would be new to me or new to me in a live performance. This one has a melody which made a perfect follow-up to CIB. The band played it like they play it all the time. 5. Can't Wait I am amazed that they made this one playable live, it has such a strange rhythm. But they picked up the tempo a bit from the album's version and made it work, indeed they actually made it groove. TOOM is and does many things, but one thing it doesn't do is groove (except for CIB). I'm psyched that they can pull it out of the hat. Larry Campbell really does this song justice. 6. Silvio By now the youngsters who had been shouted down from all over the auditorium are starting to make their way back to where we are at the back of the balcony and are groovin'. Kish and I are the oldest ones up there. _Silvio_ rocks as always, but this one is as spirited and flys as high as any one that I've ever seen. Kemper and Campbell make this band happen. Both men have found their way by now, doing the fills and driving the momentum. Tony has to work hard to keep up with them, IMHO, which is no slight on he. Winston Watson was good at keeping time, but that's about all. His fills, when he could squeeze them in, just SUCKED. David Kemper is not only a good time keeper, but he uses fills like a good artist uses background. And he ROCKS! I think he inspires both this band and Bob Dylan. My only complaint is the way he is situated onstage, which is left of center and at about a 30 degree angle to the front of the stage. I am sure that this is so Bob can cue him of the changes, which is a good thing, but he is obscured by one of his cymbals, so I can't see him from the left or center of the hall. JJ was an awesome guitarist, but he worked with Kemper for just one tour and spent all those years with Watson stomping all over his leads. Now that Larry Campbell has many shows under his belt, he and Kemper and Tony form the core of a powerful, fluid, dynamic, and talented band. I think it is the best band since the Rolling Thunder tour, maybe even better. And way better than The Band. Opinions? 7. Roving Gambler (acoustic) The Neo-Hippies behind us take this time to talk about the length of Dylan's hair. I guess these things are very important when you're 19 years old, but during the acoustic set? I asked them, very sweetly, to please shut the fuck up. Kish had to scold them later on, but after that they behaved. Anyways, this song was way cool. I dig how Kemper works the quiet ones, real pretty like. Does anybody know if Dylan wrote it, or if it is a cover? 8. Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic) This one always gets the crowd on their feet. You can tell all the Deadheads have _Blood On The Tracks_ as they all go ape shit. To Kishie I sing "Some are mathematicians, some are truck driver's wives"... 9. To Ramona (acoustic) I'm starting to feel pretty lucky here...Silvio and Tangled are the only songs this evening that I've seen Dylan do before. The version from _Biograph_ takes me back to last fall when Kish and I did 6 shows in a month, punctuated by camping in the mountains of Tennessee. Our evening music started with disk 2, which starts with this song...sitting by the fire, uncorking a bottle of wine, listening to it echo off the hills... I was there again. Like the rest of the show, a stellar performance. 10. 'Til I Fell In Love With You Now this one still needs some work, but Dylan sings it like he means it. I can think of 4 or 5 other songs from TOOM that I'd rather hear. Bucky Baxter and Larry Campbell still have to get their chops down for it. The first electric song out of the acoustic set is usually my favorite of the night since they usually attack it with both gloves off, but not tonight. 11. This Wheel's On Fire This one stands among my favorite Dylan songs. When he blew the harmonica solo during the 5/16/96 Pine Knob show version of this song, I about exploded. As a consequence, however, I look to that show as the standard by which I will forever judge all others. This particular show can stand shoulder to shoulder with that one, but this particular TWOF just can't. That said, I enjoyed hearing it again, but Bob and Larry need to get together and decide how Larry should sing backup on the chorus. He seemed to be waiting on Dylan to see where he was going to go with the chorus, and sounded unsure of himself as a result. It was the only moment all night where Larry didn't appear confident. Dylan, on the other hand, seemed to know exactly where he wanted it to go "...if this wheel shall EX-ploooowooowohwohwohd". 12. Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat Well, the 3 songs after the acoustic set are the weak link tonight, but I'm not complaining. This one makes a better set opener than a set closer. The arraignment needs to be different as a closer, nearer to the album version, which is dandy by me. But it doesn't rock like a set closer should. But there's more to come, surely they'll rock for those... (encore) 13. Like A Rolling Stone The Classic Rock Radio Rockers wake up for this one. Even the old folks in front of us know the words; for me it is cliche' by now since it opens the encore at every Dylan show. But looking at it from his perspective, it is easy to see why he does it night after night. After a while you have to reward the infrequent attendee with a song that you know that s/he will be familiar with. 14. It Ain't Me, Babe (acoustic) Yet another crowd pleaser that everybody sings along with like an anthem. Must be a universal situation: "get AWAY from me, will you?!" 15. Love Sick Ahhh, "Get AWAY from me" with a hook. I dig this song, even though happily-in-love people shouldn't. What a great song!! What a great delivery. Once again Larry Campbell shines, stoic and confident. 16. Alabama Getaway I have to tell you, I am SO sick of hearing Rainy Day Women that hearing this is like a breath of fresh air. And they punch it! Easily one of the fastest paced songs that they play, they look like they have a lot of fun with it. The Deadheads in our section advance from the back of the balcony down to the front of the balcony, writhing in ecstasy and groovin' like there is no tomorrow. I notice that the house lights come up when the song starts. Since this slot was always reserved for RDW, I always thought that it was because the house didn't want a bunch of dope smoking people smoking dope. But now I suspect that the house lights going up are actually cued by the light board folks, who are likely under instructions from the road manager if not Dylan himself. Perhaps to keep the crowd manageable. In any event, a great show, great set list, awesome performance. Kish, Mike, and Jennifer really dug it. So did the whole crowd. If any of you are on the fence regarding going to a Dylan show, I say jump off the fence and go. Will review the Dayton show as time permits. Jeff Knorek firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Columbus & Dayton Reviews, Pt. One From: Michael Roos (email@example.com) Date: Wed, 12 Nov 1997 08:59:14 +0000 A Tale of Two Cities, Columbus and Dayton, Part One ... My thirteenth and fourteenth Dylan concerts since Bloomington in 74, which must always remain the best, perhaps because it was the first (the first love is always the deepest). A couple milestones: this is the first year that I have seen more than one Dylan concert (three now) and the first time (of course) that I've seen back to back nights. The most obvious conclusion: you can't judge a tour based on one show. For while the Columbus and Dayton shows shared nine songs on their setlists, they were two very different experiences. The Dayton show was so strong, so exuberant, so wonderful that I would place it above all others except the '74 show. On the other hand, the Columbus show had much to recommend it too. I would very much like to have recordings of both these shows, if any one out there can oblige. Email me and we'll work out a trade. First, Columbus. Part Two will deal with Dayton. The Mood On a rainy night of clogged traffic in downtown Columbus, the mood was decidedly melancholic, almost elegiac at times. Bob wore a gray suit and an almost clownish oversized polka dot gambler's tie that contrasted sharply with the mood he conveyed, somber and introspective. There was less eye contact and interaction with the audience than I had seen from him in the past couple shows. He seemed to be singing for himself on this night more than for us. But that was okay. His renditions of "Be Not A Stranger," "Under the Red Sky," and "To Ramona," were heartfelt, heartbroken at times. The band was tight but also definitely subdued. At one point, I was struck by the thought that Larry Campbell looked disinterested enough that he might not be with the band for long, but I hoped that wasn't true. Even a disinterested Larry Campbell brings a dimension to the band that John Jackson never did. The Voice I had seen Bob twice before in the past 12 months, but despite the somber mood on this night, the voice sounded better than it had in a long time. There was more range, more clarity, less gravel and phlegm. And more emotional range too, at least hinted at. It was obviously a different voice from what we hear on TOOM, which probably can't work at concert volume anyway, but more than that, it suggested that Bob might still be capable of singing with the full power and range of say 20 years ago. I tried to stifle this hope, lest it be disappointed. Bob and His Audience I've never before felt so much that Dylan was singing for himself rather than his audience on a particular night. This became especially apparent to me on "Ramona," "Some day, baby, who knows maybe I'll come and be crying to you." A real lump in the throat line. Dylan was definitely feeling that one. And "Rolling Stone" was a revelation. It was the saddest version of that song I think I've heard. Such amazingly varied moods that song is capable of! It's simply astounding. Tonight I heard it as a song to himself. As someone on r.m.d. recently said, Dylan's rolling stone became a solid rock during his born again period, but now the rock is rolling again, and not in a particularly good direction. Dylan here was alone on the road, without a home, feeling none too good about it. Elegiac. A song for himself. Not that he was turning his back on us. He was letting us in on it, but maybe he was aware that the bridge couldn't be crossed. We could observe his pain but not share in it. The End Pairing "It Ain't Me Babe" and "Love Sick" in the encore provided a fitting capstone to an evening of heartbreak. Again, in this setting "It Ain't Me Babe" had none of its youthful self-confidence. This was a man who wished it WAS him, babe. It just couldn't be, that's all. And "Love Sick" brought everything to a low point on its dead streets, the streets of downtown Columbus on a night of cold rain. "Alabama Getaway" seemed a bit ludicrous after that, a perfunctory exercise, performed with professional detachment. When it was over, Dylan bowed with palms up in a gesture to the audience that seemed to say, "Sorry, folks. This was the best I could do tonight." No apologies needed though. I left the concert feeling I had looked deeper into Dylan's pain and loneliness than I had before. This dignified man, more humble now in his lengthening years, seemed to need us more than ever, yet seemed more aware than ever that we can never give him what he really needs. We walked out into the rain feeling damned lonely ourselves.