Pueblo, Colorado
Colorado State Fair
The Events Center
August 18, 2001

[Lynne Robinson], [Cory Hawley], [Steve Bort], [Pat Burns], [Brian Doyle]

Review by Lynne Robinson

Heard Bob was playing in Pueblo on Friday and Saturday found me driving to
Colorado in the company of two friends who had never seen Bob perform
live. Tomas is a Czech who has lived Stateside for twenty years ans Susan
is an American born Palestinian. Both are wide awake and living meaningful
lives. Both claim inspiration from Bob songs.Good thing boyfriend was out
of town cos in April when we saw Bob in Boulder, he was not at all
impressed and I was glad he was not here to influence these two neophytes.
It's a three hour drive from Taos to Pueblo and we arrived at about 5.45
to find the show sold out. Susan and I having worked in the biz for years
and knowing the ropes, soon manouvered ourselves (and our car) into the
backstage area. We parked right next to the busses and strolled
nonchalantly in through the back door. We sat ourselves down on a stack of
equipment cases and noone bothered us for an hour or so. In fact people
inquired as to our well-being, informed us of food outside in the tent and
asked questions as to Bob's after-show behaviour;"Does he talk to fans and
sign autographs?" To which Susan replied in an authoratative tone,
"Absolutely not!" Pretty funny. Meanwhile Tony spotted me (we go way back
to the days when he played w/my friend Anton Fig and Robert Gordon...Hot
Lone Star nights!) We chatted about the music and he got excited
describing the new Hendrix version of Watchtower. He's such an awesome
bassist...And a great guy.I guess after that we got too bold because we
decided to go outside for a smoke and there our plot to sneak in began to
unravel. There is history here. I started out my Bob addiction by sneaking
into his shows over twenty years ago and then as fate would have it I met
him, interviewed him, danced w/him, took a chance w/him and had quite a
bit of drama w/him. Stil I remain friend and fan. So, I thought I'd look
out for Bob and when I saw him, go up and beg three passes just so we
could see the show. Susan decided we should eat and went for a big plate
(of very good) food, which we proceeded to scarf down just as Bob came out
of his bus heading for the building. He didn't see me (completely myopic)
but I called out as he went by, "Hey Bob" I had my back to him but Susan
and Tomas said he spun round but couldn't see me and kept on going. I
shoulda got up then and there and hit him up for tickets, but hey it had
been a long drive; we were tired and so far so good. There seemed to be no
urgency to change the course of this tide. But then Poison Penny, (to
spare her the public shame) spotted me and a black cloud decended as she
rushed about pointing us out to security personel who up until this point
had been aiding and abetting us! Tragic turn of events. Susan made one
last play for our side...going over to Penny w/ a folder in hand that I
had brought to give to Bob (I have my ways) at which point Penny leaped
backwards in feigned shock and soon thereafter we found ourselves being
asked very nicely to leave by an english accented person of African
descent. He did not want to hear another word from us and when I asked him
to go and ask Bob, he almost exploded at my audacity. I didn't push it,
I'll let Bob know what I think in my own good time,but hey, this was
turning into a good adventure and we were all laughing about ten minutes
later after Susan miraculously conjured three great seats outta nowhere
and there we were and the band was into Hummingbird, sweet and rocking and
gently into Ramona...your cracked country lips...Bob crooning. What struck
me the most last nite, is what an extraordinary, sophisticated singer he
has become. Frank Sinatra. The phrasing (which has never been a weak
point) is even more finely honed...He sounds a little more nasal, a little
more froggy...he never was a pretty singer...but he is SINGING and the
emotive quality is beautiful. He's also playing his ass off and the harp
breaks are breathtaking. He just gets better and better, then he throws
one away...pulls the whine outta the pocket, does a little self-parody but
at least it's funny. I guess. This is the best little band in America, no
doubt and let's tip our hats to Bob the bandleader as well. Did not hear
Watchtower but did hear Hendrix come through loud and clear on Drifters
Escape which is my new theme song...Back for the encore, young crowd
bringing the house down...and it's Love Sick sounding like he means it and
we head out to the strains of Heavens Door and run to the parking lot to
make it outta there befor Bob and the busses and 2000 people exiting.
These two compadres are speechless. Smiling and nodding. About five
minutes later as we snake around the fairgrounds, heading South, Susan
says "That's the best music I've heard in twenty years." And Thomas says
"Wow" and we roll one for the road and turn up the radio. Hey Bob, thanks
for another one!


Review by Cory Hawley

Talk about a strange 2 weeks!?! I left my new "home" in Las Vegas on my 
way to Salt Lake City to pick up my friend who was going to be a groomesmen 
in my wedding. The wedding was in Yellowstone National Park. After picking 
him up at the airport, we ended up sleeing on the side of the road somewhere 
in Idaho while coyotes circled the car, and barked all night. Didn't get 
much rest. Made it to Jackson Hole to pick up the marriage license and then 
up to Yellowstone (if you want to get married w/o hassle, do it in Wyoming! 
It took 15 minutes to get a license, and no blood test needed-don't worry, 
I didn't marry a relative). Got hitched, and then off to Eastern South Dakota 
4 days later, my fiance's home town. After realizing we hadn't relaxed and 
gotten a full nights sleep in 5 days, we figured what the hell, and bought 
2 tickets for the Pueblo show at the state fair. It was a little out of the 
way on our return home to Sin City, but it ended up being worth it. After 
reading previous setlists, and noticing "Hummingbird" as an opener an a few 
rare occasions, I was anxious to hear it, but was almost convinced it wouldn't 
appear in Pueblo. But when I saw Larry with the electric guitar strapped on 
during the "Ladies & Gentlemen" intro, I knew it was it from readin the 
previous setlists. What a kick ass song to start it out. I loved it and it 
seemed to be a bit longer than the usual openers (Roving Gambler, Duncan & 
Brady, etc). And watching Bob and Charlie end the song the way they did, I 
knew it was going to be a great show. The entire show, Bob was strutting, 
high stepping, kicking, bobbing, and anything else you would expect a boxer 
to do. Charlie as well seemed very into it, as he constantly was bending over, 
bobbing his head, and just having a great time.  It's Alright Ma was incredible. 
This is the 2nd show (out of a total of 11 I've seen) that he played the 2 
"Mom" songs. It's Alright Ma had Bob picking his way to a couple great solos,
that brought people to their feet. Yeah, almost the front half of the floor 
seating were sitting. Gotta Serve Somebody just kept the train rolling. Bob 
and Charlie dancing around, and just staring each other down. Tombstone Blues 
had a little bit of a Maggie's Farm feel to it. Great version. Then one of my 
faves to hear live, Baby Blue. An averagerendition until Bob pulled out the 
harp. Probably the best harp solo I've heard him play. And he didn't cut it 
short. The crowd was going nuts, and he just kept blowing. Mama, You've been 
on my Mind was the other "Mom" song, and was a decent version. Master's of War 
had a minor twist. After singing all the verses he usually does, he repeated 
the first verse, with an empahsis on it this time. Drifter's Escape rocked the 
roof off the pace, and had them doing a 13th song for the regular set,! being 
Leopard Skin. Another song they jammed thru, and had the crowd rocking. A 
pretty typical encore. Knockin' on heaven's door was great with Larry and 
Charlie joining in. And then the newly revamped Watchtower. I had just seen 
Dave Matthews play it at his June 20 show in Buffalo, and thought it was the 
best version I have heard from any artist. This new version they played in 
Pueblo is right up there. One final note. Near where I was sitting was a 
handicapped man with crutches. At first I felt bad for him as people from the 
back walked up the aisles and stood for the entire show, blocking his view, 
along with many others. After he threatend several people, he had a clear view. 
Though, he still felt people were in his way, and continued to get up, yell, 
cause a disturbance, and fall all over the floor. I later realized he was 
drunk off his ass. He fell several times onto people, and then blaming other 
because they were standing in his "way." He was a terrible distraction,! and 
all of this could have been avoided if the Lamb-Ass Security at the Arena had 
told the people to move to their seats when the first started filling in the 
aisles. Great show, shitty security. (trying saying that fast).
So.....after logging over 4500 miles, getting married, visiting the in-laws, 
and a Dylan show in Colorado, I finally made in back to Vegas. It was a great 
trip, and looking forward to many more like it. Up next....Willie Nelson here 
in Vegas. Luckily it's only 4 miles from my place. 

Cory Hawley


Review by Steve Bort

My wife Jean and I drove 2 hours from Denver for this
show. It was my 3rd Dylan show and her 2nd. I had
tickets in hand for the Rolling Thunder Review in
Amarillo, TX in the 70s, but alas—it was cancelled for
some reason (Why Bob, oh why?). Then I finally saw Bob
w/Tom Petty at Red Rocks, near Denver, on July 26,
1986 (great show, but hard to hear the lyrics). We saw
Bob’s Boulder show earlier this year on April 18
(outstanding sound and performance!). Now, here we are
with the Pueblo show under our belts.

There was a massive traffic jam to battle on the way
out of Denver—young yahoos on their way to the weekend
outdoor fest with Widespread Panic in Larkspur. The
Denver area gets a lot of good shows this time of
year. Last night, Arlo Guthrie was up north in Lyons,
Gordon Lightfoot was at the Paramount and Chuck Berry
was at Fiddler’s Green. Decisions, decisions! (Not
really. There was no decision to it.  I had my Dylan
tickets firmly in hand!)

We walked around the State Fair for a couple hours,
ate some BBQ’d chicken sandwiches and then went in for
the show—scheduled to start at 8:00. We had
“wheelchair” seats behind the upper seats. (We fit in
with the older crowd there, but we’re not THAT old
yet!) The view of the stage was great, although a
little distant. The arena reminded me of all the small
arenas of the 70s when I was in my late
teens/twenties. The Boulder show was in the same size
arena. I had mixed feelings of being older (among the
older crowd) and feeling younger (experiencing the
State Fair and small arena show again). Time flies. It
was a NO SMOKING arena, so Jean was happy. She’s
allergic to cigarette smoke in a very big way!

Pre-show music began with Roy Orbison songs. It was
great to close my eyes to “Only the Lonely” and
imagine he was there singing. Then 8:00 rolled around.
 The opening act came out (an initial
disappointment—the Boulder show had no opening act at
all). They were called BR 549. No doubt, they were
just up there to fine tune the sound before the man
himself came out. They played a 30-minute
set—altogether a not too shabby group—an energetic mix
of country/rockabilly.

At 8:30, people were still pouring in, looking for
their seats! My mind was wandering, wondering what it
would be like as the soundman for Dylan—God, what a
primo job that would be! At 9:00, it was a full house,
very warm inside with NO smoky air at all. People
began whistling and standing up. Finally, the lights
went out and symphonic music began—probably Dvorak’s
New World Symphony-4th Movement as a reviewer for the
Springfield, IL show noted.  The place erupted in
shouts of joy! The band walked out. Bob was in his
black suit and white shirt, but without his hat on. I
could swear someone was burning incense nearby!

The band opened with HUMMING BIRD. First time I’d
heard it played. Loved it! Then, TO RAMONA.
“Everything passes. Everything changes. Just do what
you think you should do.” I could actually hear the
words. Bob was picking out the lead on acoustic. A lot
of people out there probably thinks Bob just strums
along and sings, but the man plays great lead! In the
3rd spot was IT’S ALRIGHT, MA (I’M ONLY BLEEDING). “He
not busy being born is busy dying.” What can I say,
but outstanding—foot-thumping grand! There were shouts
of “yeah!” and whistles from grateful listeners. Dylan
played great lead again at the end. (How does he
remember all of the lyrics from all of those songs,
especially ones like this!) 4th came GOTTA SERVE
SOMEBODY. “It may be the devil or it may be the Lord.”
 First time I’d heard this one live. Bob played
electric. His knees were bent down as he picked the
lead out, twisting his toes inward then outward, back
and forth. He was in grand form. He has a style of
moving his legs around that’s reminiscent of the young
Elvis and Chuck Berry, and yet it’s his own style.
It’s awesome to watch. It helps give the feeling that
he’s truly enjoying himself. Work seems play to him!
In the 5th spot was TELL ME THAT IT ISN’T TRUE from
Nashville Skyline—still one of my all-time favorite
Dylan LPs. “So darlin’, I’m countin’ on you.” Larry
played pedal steel and Bob played more beautiful
electric lead. The combination was sweet! Next, it was
TOMBSTONE BLUES. Yeah! Footthumpin’ electric
rockabilly blues! “Daddy’s in the alley He’s lookin’
for the fuse.” I hope I’m enjoying this music half as
much as Bob, I thought! It was getting hot in there—in
more ways than one! Number 7 was IT’S ALL OVER NOW
BABY BLUE. “Yonder stands your orphan with his gun.”
First time I’d heard that one live also. The stage was
bathed in yellow. It was slow country blues with Larry
on pedal steel—unrecognizable lyrics to me until the
refrain. Dylan doodled out a great acoustic lead while
twisting his left leg and boot like squishing out a
cigarette on the floor. Bob played harp on this one.
Damn! What a joy hearing Dylan, our modern
Shakespeare, in such fine form after all these years,
all those songs, all the comedies and tragedies of the
last four decades (especially the sixties)! Number 8
was MAMA, YOU’VE BEEN ON MY MIND from the Bootleg
Series, Vol 1-3. “Maybe it’s the weather or something
like that.” Bob played acoustic lead. NICE! 9th was a
personal favorite for me. Can’t ever hear it too many
times—MASTERS OF WAR! “Even Jesus would never forget
what you do.” There were lights in front of the band
casting huge shadows on the black curtained backdrop
behind them. It reminded me of the scenes from The
Third Man with Orson Welles with the huge shadows
moving along the building walls. Bob played wicked
acoustic lead on this one. He ended it with a repeat
of the first verse “I just want you to know I can see
through your masks.” Beautiful! 

AGAIN. “Well, Shakespeare, he’s in the alley with his
pointed shoes and his bells.” Bob on electric lead.
Dueling electrics with Larry on acoustic guitar. Bob
enunciated the lyrics as if making a point. He looked
like he really enjoyed the jam with the other guitars.
MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE was next. “Ahhhh there’s nothing
I wouldn’t do…” It’s hot in here, I thought. Jean and
I were both sweating. Number 12 was DRIFTER’S ESCAPE
from John Wesley Harding. “’You fail to understand,’
he said.”  Again the lights and moving shadows.
Opening guitar riffs reminded me of Hendrix—Crosstown
Traffic, I thought. Bob again on a wicked electric
lead. 3 electrics jammin’ together. Then Bob on harp,
kneeling on one knee. Outstanding blues jam! Number
13, LEOPARD-SKIN PILL-BOX HAT, closed out the first
set. “You must tell me, baby, how your head feels
under somethin’ like that.” Pure electric blues! Bob
with his left knee bent, pointing his guitar down at
the floor as he jammed. He introduced the band during
the song. Afterwards, they left the stage for a break.

Cigarette lighters came on around the arena. Foot
thumping like a thunderous buffalo herd. Jean told a
guy behind us to put out his cigarette. He looked at
her surprised, but finally dropped it, kicked it down
the concrete steps and walked off angrily. It’s not
easy bringing her to concerts, but she deserves to
hear Dylan as much as anyone—she just becomes very ill
from cigarette smoke. Not exactly easy to make people
understand that in a concert setting. We have to
choose concert venues, and seats, carefully because of

The encore set began with LOVE SICK. “I’d give
anything to be with you.” Hot electric lead from Bob.
He would slide his boots right and left, back and
forth to the beat. Next was LIKE A ROLLING STONE. God,
how many times has he played this one! “How does it
feel?” There was a young blonde standing up in front
of me, blocking my view. A group of people behind us
were holding hands and dancing in a circle. At the
end, everyone came to their feet, clapping and
whistling gratefully. KNOCKIN’ ON HEAVEN’S DOOR was in
the 16th spot. “Just like so many times before.”
Everyone was still on their feet for this one. It was
acoustic except for the electric slide, slow and very
sweet. Their voices all in harmony was truly
beautiful! Number 17 was ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER.
“There are many here among us, who feel that life is
but a joke.” There were fuzzy revolving lights cast on
the black curtained backdrop. A throwback to the cheap
light shows of the sixties? This one was all electric
with a very Hendrix sounding slide! Great song, and
always will be! Finally, and disappointingly, the 18th
spot went to BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND. “How many times…?”
Disappointingly, because this song heralds the end of
show. It was all acoustic. A timeless and great song.
Another that always will be! Dylan played his
“doodling” acoustic lead, and then it was over. As the
crowd went wild, he was pulling up at his pants as if
finished with a days work. He took a final bow and was

I personally think Dylan has the best touring band of
his career on this “never ending tour.” They have
sounded incredibly TIGHT and alive the two times we’ve
seen them on this tour. They are obviously having the
time of their lives. Dylan looks like he’s just having
so much fun up there. They all do. I’m all for a box
set of material from this tour someday—someday very
soon! The songs are mostly so old now, and yet they
sound as fresh as ever with this band. His new songs
are as great as ever also. How many other musicians
from the sixties sound this good, and this essential,
after all those years. Dylan is truly a wizard, when
you think about it! I’ll be in line for Love and Theft
on September 11!           --Steve Bort


Review by Pat Burns

I'm a lifelong fan and have caught many shows over the years 
indoors and out--good and bad nights for Bob. Pueblo was an
on night for BD and band, you could tell by the energy, smiles and
good natured relaxed mood of the men on stage. Unfortunately, I couldn't
enjoy the show from my seat directly above the sound men (a seat I chose
many months ago because it should be the best in house). The sound was so
bottom heavy, the guitars and vocals were obscured by the bass-end

I realize the sound of today is bass heavy, from the country-pop to
hip-hop. But BD wouldn't have so many guitars if this sound interested
him. It isn't the bass players fault either, I caught the same band at
Mesa Sol in Albuquerque many months ago. Even the stand-up was too boomy;
only the acoustic guitarron-like ax had the proper bass sound for Dylan's
songs. I also realize that the room was a bass-heavy acoustic nightmare,
but I heard Bill Graham's sound-folks do wonders with a hockey arena on
Dylan & the Band's "comeback" tour in the the mid 70's.  

I thought back over the years of Colorado and New Mexico shows. The Hard
Rain show in Denver on BD's birthday many years ago was so powerful
despite the weather and being outdoors.  

The best I ever recall Dylan's sound was on the Slow Train tour--yet most
of the audience walked out because of the "preaching" and lack of "hits"
that we all love BD for sharing so generously and so often with us here in
the Rockies. Please sound guys, present the man properly in the way he
should be. Don't try to follow the bass heavy trends that are so popular

Pat Burns
Santa Fe, NM


Review by Brian Doyle

I felt compelled to add this review after reading the previously posted
ones here. One of the reviews was fairly insightful, I have my doubts
about the first one. It seems loosely based on an article from the Publeo
Chieftan, the local rag.
Dylan last played here in 1991 or so in the outside Rodeo arena. The
Events Center,despite some problems with the heat, is a far better venue.
I do suggest that they repair the air conditioning system. I sat in Row 0,
section three, on the floor and found the sound very clear and audible. I
was not really prepared for the opening act as I had arrived inside as
soon as the doors opened, not expecting that Dylan and the band would
still be a little bit of a wait.
After the opener it seemed a short while to transform the stage back to
the usual Bob setup. Then the classical music, and then Al, with his
familar announcement, and then Bob and crew for the opener "Humming Bird".
That was a real treat as it was the first time I had heard it live and in
person. Dylan and Larry and Charlie really seemed on tonight. The acoustic
portion moved along quickly, good renditions, and then another bit of
"Gotta Serve Somebody", which I had not heard live since the shows in 1980
at the defunct Rainbow Music Hall in Denver, which, by the way is where I
live. Then another highlight in the electric set was "Stuck inside of
Mobile wtmba". Then a a little "Toom" with a very nicely served "Make you
feel my love", and by this time the place was heating up in more ways than
one. I was little disappointed that "Love sick" opened the encore set
again, but what the heck, still a great song. Next up was "Like a rolling
Stone", and believe it or not, the highlight of the evening. "LARS" is a
very overplayed song, but that is because, it is simply one of the best
rock songs ever written and actually turned his entire career around and
we should be thankful every time we hear it. But tonight, tonight he did
it!! He added the "Ring around the Rosey" thing at the end. I don't think
he had done that since the Dublin show last year. WOW! That made the
hassle of the State Fair all worth it in just a few seconds. Then on to a
great "Knockin", a very intense "Watchtower" and then a gentle, but
accurate "Blowin in the Wind". I wish some cold air had been "Blowin" as
well. Then it was out the door into the Colorado air and the fair lights
and the drive back to Denver for a good sleep before heading to Vail.
Pueblo is located on a high, dry, plain in the southern portion of the
state. I sure was looking forward to the mountains of Vail and a reprise
from the heat.......and of course seeing Bob and the tightest band in the
world, in the splendors of the great state COLORado. Thanks Bob for making
this your home away from home.

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