Wednesday, August 13, 2008

"Brooklyn Like Never Before": Dylan Doesn't Disappoint and Neither Does Celebrate Brooklyn

"Brooklyn like Never Before", the Bob Dylan website declared last night. "Bob Dylan and his band played Brooklyn's Prospect Park last night, his first concert ever in what may be New York City's greatest borough. He's certainly never played so close to Montague Street" the Dylan website reported. And what an evening it was.

A couple of days ago, I posted something on my blog about what Dylan had played at his last show in Baltimore, and now it was next stop, Brooklyn USA. When I was driving through the Slope to work yesterday morning, anticipating the show last night, I thought, and I mean I didn't know where he was staying or even if he was in the city yet, but I kind of thought "Dylan is under the same sky as we are (in Brooklyn) today." So atypical and unusually fannish of me, I don't think I would feel that way about any other performer. As a songwriter and musician, as a poet, writer, painter, filmmaker, as an anti-celebrity and anti-icon, as an artist, Dylan is an original, and although he plays "roots" music, in someways, after performing for 40 years or whatever, I guess he IS roots.

There was so much excitement and surprise when the tickets went on sale, and I was so late in getting them, and our tickets were for the lawn area, and I was so excited to see "Bob" again live, that I set my expectations about the venue very low. I didn't want to be disappointed. Well damn, it was a wonderful venue with a great crowd , and a fantastic set.

The crowd was very relaxed and civil. The long line snaked around the park. A few dark clouds appeared and some thunder clapped but it all seemed to happen away from the park. It quickly moved away and turned into a lovely, comfortable summer evening. Kids, teens, young adults, boomers and older folks, we all filled the place. We were sitting near a couple with their little guy, who was maybe 3, and the mom was cradling her newborn who couldn't have been more than a few days old. An older gent, smoking a stogey, leaned against a tree, holding a cane. Once the music started, everyone was on their feet, moving, shaking and grooving, even the gent with his cane and stogey cut a mean stomp.. Dylan and band appeared to a loud roar from the crowd, they started playing and didn't let up.

Dylan looked sharp in his southwestern style suit and Spanish bolero-style hat. His current band rocked hard and long. Songs included:

1. Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 (Bob on keyboard)
2. Lay, Lady, Lay (Bob on keybo ard)
3. Lonesome Day Blues (Bob on keyboard)
4. Girl Of The North Country (Bob on keyboard)
5. The Levee's Gonna Break (Bob on keyboard)
6. Spirit On The Water (Bob on keyboard)
7. Honest With Me (Bob on keyboard)
8. John Brown (Bob on keyboard)
9. Highway 6 1 Revisited (Bob on keyboard)
10. Beyond The Horizon (Bob on keyboard)
11. It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding) (Bob on keyboard)
12. Nettie Moore (Bob on keyboard)
13. Summer Days (Bob on keyboard)
14. Masters Of War (Bob on keyboard)

(encore)
15. Like A Rolling Stone (Bob on keyboard)
16. Thunder On The Mountain (Bob on keyboard)
17. Blowin' In The Wind (Bob on keyboard)
(thanks - www.Boblinks.com)

His current band members are an amazing and tight group. It was true, for a few hours, Prospect Park Bandshell was transformed into Hipster Heaven. Life (sometimes) is Good. And one more thing:

After listening to all of his music all of these years, year after year, reading his interviews, books, seeing his shows, the films, etc,. I don't imagine or pretend to know who BD really is. To quote the line from some French New Wave Film from the 60s, I think by Jean Luc Godard,"Qui ĂȘtes-vous, Bob Dylan ?" I don't know and I don't really care. As a listener and fan, he seems just fine the way he is and I hope that he keeps making music and writing songs as long as he likes. Thanks Bob Dylan, thanks Celebrate Brooklyn and thanks Brooklyn, New York. So, you don't be a stranger to Brooklyn, Bob, now, ya hear?
--Brooklyn Beat

3 comments:

  1. I live in Asbury Park, nj and he is playing here tonight.
    I'm about 8 blocks from the convention Center where he will be playing and I have a ticket!
    First time in a very, very long time.
    I had to get Standing room ticket which I hear is the middle of the venue with bleachers along the sides.

    I should get going so I can get in and up front if possible.

    I'm almost 60 years old and Bob has always been my man. BUT, I don't know how I am going to stand for so long. LOL

    I guess if he can stand night after night...
    I just read somewhere else that it looks like his knees and legs are bothering him.

    Anyway, I relate.
    He's just 8 blocks from me.





    Guess I better get ready.
    Can you tell I'm excited.
    He is my imaginary boyfriend after all.
    LOL

    Glad you had such a great time with Bob.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Enjoy the show ! Thanks for your comment

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great show. Another great year for Celebrate Brooklyn. You can read my review here:

    http://tinyurl.com/6hzhqz

    ReplyDelete

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