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Review by Tom S.
Purdue university's Elliot Hall is the largest school music hall in the
United States, in fact, only Radio City in NYC is larger, and apparantly
there was a competition between the two buildings for a number of years
where each one kept adding two seats in order to increase capacity to
out-do the other. This game ended when Radio City added 100 seats,
trumping Elliot Hall. According to a guy working in the building, it was
constructed from 1938-1940.
I arrived at the venue at 5:45PM and the soundcheck was in progress.
Friends later told me that I missed the part where he played I & I, I
Threw It All Away, Memphis Blues, and God Knows, so I can not verify that
part personally, but I don't think my friends would deliberately misinform
me. Bob was not present, a stand-in was checking his vocal mic by a
combination of singing, speaking, shouting, and imitating bob's voice.
The portion if the check which I heard consisted of:
electric: The Wheel's On Fire- with harmony vocals, and "check check 1-2
1-2" kind of stuff on top of it from Bob's stand-in
acoustic:(let's play name that tune- I'll say there was a tiny tease: two
notes of HIGHLANDS on the mandolin)
I Am The Man Thomas- with Bob's stand-in singing his part
Then there was a cowboy waltz-time song with LC-Mandolin, one I didn't
recognize, but it was sung, had some lyrics that referred to "my west
virginia woman" and possibly "lonesome moon" ??? I was not inside the
actual performance space to hear this, the sound was passing through two
doorways to get to me, so I had a really hard time making out the lyrics
to this one.
another tiny tease- the theme from "Chariots of Fire" solo guitar
then Chimes of Freedom, but with no vocals whatsoever. I could not
recognize it during the check, but noted that it was a waltz-time song
similar in groove to times are a'changin or gates of eden, that it for
sure sounded like a dylan song. When it was played in the #4 spot, I
recognized the tune from soundcheck before bob started singing, and was
*very* happily surprised by the actual identity of the song.
larry made sure his fiddle worked, someone checked the harmonica mic, then
Pablo checked his after-show music- cued up some more Beatles- "All
Together Now" is that from yellow sub?
end of soundcheck report
show notes: Really well-attended show, more crowded than the Bloomington
show the previous night, even though the place was nearly twice the size.
After the LSPBH, (I think it was) Bob blew a kiss to (a member of?) the
audience over to his left.
also, during the long encore, after watchtower, the black "Austrian
Curtain" backdrop was pulled back to reveal the white one for the
remainder of the show. I didn't notice if this was the case the past few
nights, but this summer on Phylan Up tour, the curtain was black for the
first 6 acoustic songs, pulled that back and went to the white one for the
electric set, then back to the black for the encores.
well, that's what I got for ya tonight. I'm done with the road for a bit,
computing from home now, it was really foggy after the show, I hope
everyone arrived safely where they were headed.
Millett should be cool, there is a "special guest" advertised, will it be
an opening act? an actual guest in the set? they're near tennessee,
maybe marty stuart will play the whole show. Keep fingers crossed. .
.maybe bob'll go to nashville on his day off and woodshed or something. .
. sheesh, now I gotta go to bed- g'night everybody
Review by Rev'd John Wm Klein
Seeing Bob Dylan for the third time this year, first at Rochester, MN then
in Albuquerque, NM, and now at Purdue University, has convinced me that
the power of this music does three things:
(1) First, in unites people of all ages. I have three daughters, all
great Dylan fans, and my oldest daughter Adrianne, aged 29, accompanied
her 54 year old father on last night's 400 mile journey from La Crosse, WI
to Purdue only to return spell bound, so much so, that we drove straight
through to home talking all the way about what we had heard and seen!
Indeed, all around us at the concert were people of all ages utterly
united by Bob's music. The same was true in the previous concerts I had
seen this year. As we waited to enter the acoustically excellent Elliott
Hall of Music, we talked with a 16 year old young man who told me he had
been a Bob Dylan fan since he was old enough to "really listen." I told
him I had been a fan since 1964 and I was still trying to "really listen."
The power to unite people was present at several moments. The final encore
piece "Blowin' in the Wind" was obvious in this regard and probably 3000
of the 6000 in attendance were singing it. And, of course, everyone was
with Bob on "Like a Rolling Stone." But, for me equally spell binding, no
actually more so, was the profound silence on "Tryin' to get to Heaven"
and "I threw it all away" with the audience straining to listen as Bob
clearly enunciated the words. People are united both by old favorite tunes
and themes, but also by the power of the lyrics to capture what is clearly
a universal human theme. (2) The second thing I think the music did was to
capture an aesthetic sense of Joy that just about everyone had as they
walked smiling from the Hall. The obvious moments of crowd pleasing like
Bob's harmonica solo on "Drifter's Escape" were just plain fun. The very
electric and super animated rendition of "Country Pie" was powerful. But
for me the finest piece of the evening was "If Dogs Run Free" and it posed
this very question yet one more time: "If dogs run free, then why not we?"
And the theme of harmony, unity, was captured here again: "In harmony with
the cosmic sea, true love needs no company, It can cure the soul, it can
make it whole. If dogs run free." Incidentally, in the first stanza he
sang "The best is yet to be" instead of "The best is always yet to come."
The entire evening was profoundly joyful and Bob seemed to radiate that
happiness in a way that, as always, is contagious. (3) Finally, I think as
has often been said about ten million times Bob Dylan's music is
prophetic. Yes, of course, but now at an even more mature and considerably
deeper level. "Hallelujah, I'm ready to go" which began the evening was
theme setting for the complete concert. The consciousness raising soared
once again to a truly spiritual level. This was the first time I had heard
"Things have changed" and I was impressed. This may well speak more to 54
year olds than college students who composed three / fourths of the
audience. I also think, as the reviewers in Frankfurt, Germany noted, that
in the third chorus repeat he sang "Things haven't changed." In so mant
ways things have and they haven't changed! The concert highlighted that
meaning. But, for me the piercing rendition of "I shall be released "
captured it all. Nowhere was the band better. Nowhere did the power of
this greater theme sound more clearly to a world in need of "release." The
theme was there from the beginning with "It's alright Ma" and "Chimes of
Freedom" right straight through "Drifter's Escape" and "All along the
Watchtower" which most didn't recognize initially. Adrianne and I came
away with much to think and talk about as did our 16 year old friend!
What an evening; will not soon forget it. Thank you Bob!
The Rev'd John Wm Klein, La Crosse, WI
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