Monday, October 20, 2014

Bob Dylan The Welder and His Band / "Waiting For You"

              For the concert by Bob Dylan and His Band at the Paramount Theater in Seattle last night, I sat in Row Y Seat 4, very close to the beautiful ceiling of the Paramount Theater in Seattle:

As I was waiting for the concert to begin, a young man climbed down from Row Z and settled himself in the seat to my right.  He looked at me briefly and then stared straight ahead. He didn't say anything or clap until the intermission and then turned to me and asked if I liked the concert. I said, "Yes." I asked him if he was a Bob Dylan fan. He said, "Yes." I asked him if he had a favorite album. He didn't. I asked when he had first heard Bob Dylan. He said it was when he was in the 10th grade.  He said, "I grew up on Highway 61." I said that I did, too, thinking he was referring to the album "Highway 61 Revisited." Then I realized he meant that he grew up in Minnesota and had lived on Highway 61. I told him that I first started listening to Bob Dylan at the same age he had started listening. I told him I had seen Bob Dylan at the Paramount Theater in early 1980's and that I had first seen Bob Dylan in concert with The Band in Boston in 1974. He smiled tentatively. After the lights came on after the last song, I asked him if this was his first Bob Dylan concert. He said, "Yes." I told him he had chosen a good one. As he was walking down toward the exit, he turned and smiled and said, "Good to meet you. Have a good evening."

There is a feeling of fellowship among people who are drawn to the music of Bob Dylan. 

This was the set list for all three of the Seattle concerts, with the majority of the songs written since 1997:

Things Have Changed
She Belongs To Me
Beyond Here Lies Nothin'
Workingman's Blues #2

Happiness is just a state of mind
Anytime you want you can cross the state line

(Those lyrics are from "Waiting for You," by Bob Dylan, a song that I first heard during the credits for the movie "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood."  Apparently there is no official recording except in connection with that movie.)

Duquesne Whistle
Pay In Blood
Tangled Up In Blue
Love Sick
High Water (For Charley Patton)
Simple Twist of Fate
Early Roman Kings
Forgetful Heart
Spirit on the Water
Scarlet Town
Soon After Midnight
Long and Wasted Years

All Along the Watchtower
Blowin' In The Wind

Although I had gone to the concert with the thought that this might be Bob Dylan's last tour, I don't think that anymore. My sense was that his energy is better than ever. I didn't feel any sense of nostalgia at this concert. It was about right here, right now -- the present moment with its ups and down. This concert was so much better than the last one I saw in the late 1990's when there was a grinding weariness to the old songs, except when he sang "Girl From The North Country" as an encore. 

From what I saw last night, Bob Dylan is thriving at 73 years old, and that's how I hope to be when I'm 73. 


The Solitary Walker said...

Great set list!

Yes, there is that fellowship — I've experienced it many times.

Really pleased for you and everyone there he was in good form. Now, I wouldn't say I was envious, but... :)

Anonymous said...

So glad you went to this concert, and that it was a wonderful experience. I like the conversation you had with that young man. There is an undercurrent of community when we find that we love the same music and musician.

am said...

Solitary Walker and robin andrea:
Thank you for your comments!

Zach said...

i'm glad you got to see/hear dylan! the concert sounds like it was awesome. i loved the story about the fellowship that took place between you and the young dude you met at the concert. brief encounters are often significant ones - "a real moment" as janis joplin once famously said :-)

Candy Meacham said...

Glad it was a great concert. Good story about your pal in the seat nextdoor. Oh yeah, I'm a Dylan fan. I just had a listen the other night - to Watchin' the River Flow.

Tara said...

what a great experience. wish I were there as well. I recently watched the old 60 Minutes interview with him, and it occurred to me that I'd never seen him talk at length.

Just got The Basement Tapes and am enjoying the playfulness of Bob and THE Band. :-)