Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Bob Dylan In Concert, 2018
"Go on. THAT was Like A Rolling Stone? Stop it."
-Me, About 90 minutes from now
That was the cheap shot I took on social media last night about 15 minutes until showtime, accompanied by a photo of the Beacon Theatre marquee, all for a quick laugh, which of course, I got. It was a red carpet for more of the same and I regretted posting it by the second song of Bob Dylan's set.
"Go melt back into the night, babe
Everything inside is made of stone
There’s nothing in here moving
An’ anyway I’m not alone
You say you’re lookin' for someone
Who’ll pick you up each time you fall
To gather flowers constantly
An’ to come each time you call
A lover for your life an’ nothing more
But it ain’t me, babe
No, no, no, it ain’t me, babe
It ain’t me you’re lookin’ for, babe"
It sounded like "It Ain't Me, Babe" and if the concert ended there, I would have seen Bob Dylan and his band perform "It Ain't Me, Babe," and each time I take a breath and think about that in 2018, something happens inside of me. It's a wave of emotion, almost disbelief. Definitely happiness. I feel very lucky, and even a bit unworthy.
Do all of the songs sound the same? No, of course they don't, no more than all reggae or all blues music sounds the same. It's another cheap shot. Remove Bob Dylan from the stage and you have four amazing musicians who have arranged some of Dylan's best loved work and play it nightly with a spark that is rare among daily grind musicians. Don't forget, this is a "never ending tour." There was no snare drum smack and organ intro to "Like A Rolling Stone," but the arrangement was nothing short of genius and I got to hear Bob Dylan sing, "How does it FEEL" all eight times, just like he does on "Highway 61 Revisited," for the most part. I knew what I was listening to and if I had smiled any harder, my face would have cracked into a million pieces. If you have a problem with Bob's voice, still, now in 2018, I can't help you.
Unlike most of the audience, who sat on their hands for the first minute of every song, waiting for old Zimmy to sing the title so they could clap in recognition, I knew every song played. I am a Dylan fan and I felt each song, though it took most of "Cry A While" for me to think, "OH! Cry A While." I cried a number of times. "It Ain't Me, Babe" was the first.
"People tell me it’s a sin
To know and feel too much within
I still believe she was my twin, but I lost the ring
She was born in spring, but I was born too late
Blame it on a simple twist of fate"
The man who wrote that verse sat a piano and played it. I knew what it was the second he began, "They sat together in the park." This was the second time I welled up. If the concert ended there, I would have seen Bob Dylan and his band perform "Simple Twist Of Fate," and each time I take a breath and think about that in 2018, something happens inside of me. It's a wave of emotion, almost disbelief. Definitely happiness. I feel very lucky, and even a bit unworthy. But if the concert had ended there, I would not have been able to shed tears of joy at the conclusion of "When I Paint My Masterpiece." I saw and heard Bob Dylan sing "When I Paint My Masterpiece." Sorry, but that is fucking something else!