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Bob Dylan 2000.09.17 in Glasgow, Scotland

Scottish Exhibition & Conference Centre, SECC
Capacity: 8200



Date: Sun, 17 Sep 2000 23:28:56 +0100
Subject: Dylan in Glasgow
From: "john.archer" john.archer@zoom.co.uk
To: webmaster@expectingrain.com

Hi guys I love your site so I felt I had to send you this. You'll
correct the mistakes! Use it if you like. Maybe it doesn't fit
the standards.


Dylan in Glasgow
Sunday 17th September 2000

The greatest concert I’ve ever been to.

I had low expectations for Dylan at the SECC. I'd seen him there
in the early '90s when he seemed to want to race through all the
songs and thought he was a punk. Edinburgh in 1995 was perfect –
unplugged time and theatre seating. But tonight was really
wonderful. A magnificent show, with fine lighting and perfect
sound (maybe standing next to the mixing desk helps).

I've read the reviews of Tramps, and got the album . This was the
same band. Starting with a new one to me, Glory Glory Glory (Somebody Touched Me - KE)
which caught, as many of the songs did, the best of that
Dylan/Happy Traum acoustic guitar feeling and into The Times they
are a Changin. (It's alright Ma) I'm only Bleedin. Tangled up in
Blue ( with a topical change of lyric it seemed to me,
"Truck-driver's wives" for Carpenters') which featured a great
harmonica performance. A mandolin intro to a new one on me "The
World Can't stand long"(?). Brilliant Mary Campbell slide guitar
on Country Pie ( the country sound he does now is so fantastic),
Just like a Woman ( Dylan an amazing lead guitar throughout) with
a heartfelt "It was raining so I came in here"  given the storm
outside. Then a really rocky "You go your Way and I'll go mine".
Then the surprise treat of the night given that it appears not to
have been performed in Aberdeen – "Highlands" one of Dylan's
comic plays of a song, clearly his view of the Highland s is his
idea of Heaven. Drifters Escape was given the kind of treatment
normally reserved for Maggie's Farm – very rocky. Then a rarity
as far as I know for concerts – "Every body must get stoned" took
us to the brief interval/pre-encore.

Back for Things have changed, Just like a Rolling Stone, It ain't
me Babe ( very much in Tramps countryswing mode) Highway 61 –
with the chance for some stadium rock guitar jamming – Blowing in
the Wind , a joyous To be alone with you and then the benedictory
Forever Young.

Bob was on fine generous form, in a studded suit jacket and tie.
He swang tonight and pleased us all. Better than Blackbush,
Earls' Court.

I've cringed when I've read some of these postings. But now I
understand. IF you have the chance to see Bob on this tour, just
do it. For me it was better than some tearful Van Morrison
concerts, Springsteen's first at the Odeon Hammersmith, or even
Leonard Cohen in Athens.

The musical night of my  life.
Anyone who gets hold of a good recording please get in touch.
john.archer@zoom.co.uk


From: notdarkyet@eircom.net To: "Karl Erik Andersen" , "Bill Pagel" Subject: Glasgow review by Markus Prieur Date: Mon, 18 Sep 2000 11:03:19 +0100 What can I say? I am still in shock after last night's show. It was my 25th Bob Dylan concert and he again pulled out four songs I had never seen him perform. I almost expected the opener "SOMEBODY TOUCHED ME", as "it was on a Sunday" and as he dared to play "I AM THE MAN THOMAS" in Dublin and "HALLELUJAH I'M READY TO GO" in Aberdeen. Those three openers top the list of the 12 songs performed occasionally both in 1999 and 2000 on my website "Not Dark Yet", as the bottom of this list consists of my three favorite "Time Out Of Mind" songs: "Trying To Get To Heaven", "Not Dark Yet" and "Highlands", which again he performed in Dublin, Aberdeen and Glasgow, in exactly that same order. Funny! His vocal performance was absolutely awesome from the start, as he told us about the touch of the hand of his Lord. Yes he even performed "HIGHLANDS", for the first time outside the US, and as I have heard all the previous live versions, I might say, this one was as good as it gets. He was not listening to Neil Young this time, but to Annie Lennox, but his heart still is in the Highlands ("I can't figure out any other place that I wanna go"). The other "first ever in Europe" performance was a magnificent "THIS WORLD CAN'T STAND LONG", a very serious warning about the state of this world "full of sin", which is "going to be destroyed again", offering the way out by giving our hearts to God and let him lead us by the hand (connected to the same hand that Bob sang about in "SOMEBODY TOUCHED ME" = the same nail scared hand he sang about in "I AM THE MAN THOMAS" in Dublin). Lyrics to "THIS WORLD..." are also to be found on the relevant page of my website. He actually did performe 7 of the 12 songs on my list in three consecutive shows. Amazing. He also performed a strong "MOST LIKELY YOU GO YOUR WAY (AND I'LL GO MINE", which I had never seen before. Also new for this tour were a very slow and nice version of "IT'S ALL OVER NOW, BABY BLUE" and the first acoustic encore "IT AIN'T ME BABE", (which was second choice on the cue sheet, which they do not give away anymore, but with my binoculars I could spot the bottom of Bob's copy hanging over the edge of his amp). First choice was "MR TAMBOURINE MAN", as for the next slot, where he played "H61", the first choice was "WATCHTOWER". The last electric song (also new for this tour) was a rock-and-rolling "TO BE ALONE WITH YOU", which I had seen before in Zurich last year. This one was even third choice on the cue sheet. Second choice was "EVERYTHING IS BROKEN" and first choice was "MAN OF PEACE". Markus Prieur / http://notdarkyet.tripod.com / notdarkyet@eircom.net
Subject: Glasgow review From: Shim shimgray@bigfoot.com Date: Mon, 18 Sep 2000 22:39:53 GMT Well, well. This was a damn good show, s'all I can say. Damn good. Arrived at the venue at, oh, sixish - straight in the doors, no queue, no touts (though they were apparently there - £60/ticket!). A small nucleus of people was gathered in front of the stage, maybe a couple of hundred die-hards and optomists. Looking around, the guesses I'd made about the average bobcat were quickly dashed; there was a shockingly high (read: any at all) proportion of not just teenagers, but a good handful of twelve-thirteen-fourteen year olds, who seemed to be dragging their parents along more than the other way around. (In fact, I saw one lad on someone's shoulders during Forever Young, who I swear seemed younger than the kids I worked with last year, and they were six!) Glad to see there's some taste amongst the younger generation; there's hope for the world yet. After finding a spot (about ten back from the front, just to the left of centre), fetching hamburgers (guaranteed vegetarian friendly it seems; I sure as hell didn't find any meat in 'em...), and avoiding the temptations of the bar, we waited. And waited. :-) The next hour and a half was spent happily geeking Dylan, discussing Phil's ftp site (no, really... there you are, Phil, you're famous; you were being discussed by two strangers on the other side of the world), discussing setlists, politely badmouthing "Dylan & The Dead"... all those activities which occur when diehards start talking before a concert. I'm sorry I didn't get names, but I know there was at least one rmd reader there, the short guy w/ curly hair and the blue shirt / white t-shirt - hi! As for the six-foor-something American who was offering to burn CDs for people... :-) The atmosphere was incredible - everyone was cheerful, expectant, and there was a marked absence of pushing or even, ah, polite infiltration forwards. By about 7:15 the place was quite clearly almost filled up; it was certainly resembling a sea of heads & arms any way I looked. Didn't see any familiar faces; no doubt there were some, but it was pretty packed out. All this time, the crew were taking guitars out, taking them back again, tuning them... I honestly lost count of how many instruments got sued in total, but Larry Campbell had gone through four instruments by the fifth song, and I'm sure Sexton used more guitars than I can count on one hand... that big standup bass, though, was a beautiful instrument. Nice violin, too, sitting off to one side; pity it never got used. We could see cuesheets being laid out, together with towels; oddly enough, there didn't actually seem to be one in front of Bob; he quite often dropped back to confer with Tony Garnier or David Kemper before a song. Perhaps that's my memory playing tricks, but there you go. Anyhow, at about 7:40 the lights dropped - they then went half-back up again, fiddled around for a bit, dropped. 7:45, maybe a little past; "Ladies and Gentlemen, would you please..." Not bad. Not bad at all. The band entered from the right, one by one. Whilst I didn't expect Bob to be wearing a tie (if it wasn't a tie, what the heck was it?) - and if I had I'd have expected something more tasteful - it seemed to be one of those little quirks that works only when he does it. :-) He was wearing a long black jacket & trousers, with rather odd diamond patches up the sleeves & legs. Larry Campbell was looking rather satisfied and at ease, whilst Tony Garnier seemed almost scared of the audience for the first hour or so, skirting round his bass and looking up momentarially every now and again. C'mon, they're only Glaswegians... Anyway, the first song. A little more of a gap than we've seen previously; I've certainly had tapes where the band has kicked in before the announcement has finished. "Somebdy Touched Me"; I've never heard this before, but it was damned good. The voice was a little beat-up to begin with, as it seems to invariably be, but it was certainly helped along by a strong backing from Larry & Charlie. Bob was moving his leg quite a bit here, and this continued; definitely a good sign, it seems. We got a "Thankyooo..." Next, we had Times. Virtually every one of the eight thousand two hundred people in the hall knew this off pat, and you could sense it - there were definitely a good few hurling the chorus back at the stage. Bob was on strong form here; every line was - well, okay, it's the second song - quite clear; hell, he even smiled, briefly, for "don't stand in the doorway / don't block up the hall". Interestingly, I noticed that, at the end of the songs, he backed off a little (about 4'?) from the microphone to continue playing - every now and again, he'd tilt his head to one side, and almost seem to size up the mike in front of him [1], play for a bit longer, then call it a day. Not that I'm complaining; after another curt, but kind, "thankyou" we rolled on into It's All Right, Ma... I'll admit I wasn't really wanting this song; I had a little voice in the back of my mind reminding me it was a tossup between this and Desolation Row. And Desolation Row is *the* bobsong, to me. And then the lights crisscrossed above the band. And Bob stepped forward. And I remembered why I loved this song. It was a clean, clear, cold, song. There was no snarl, no anger; there was just the sorrow of the seeing, the truth of the telling. This is what's happening, we were told; a song still honest and pure, though it was older than most of the people hearing it - and some of the people playing it. And then, too soon, it ended, though not before the band had got into a firm swing, carrying us onwards. But the story didn't. We had a picture painted for us in these last two songs; a time of wrong, of change and turmoil, and then - it changed. We plunged straight through the rolling flames and out the other side. And when we emerged - It's All Over Now. This wasn't the same song that the aging hippies in the audience remembered, but at the same time it was. It was a tired, beautiful song; this was #4, and he was on excellent form by now. The first line was a little mangled, but then it straightened. And shot like an arrow, into the ears and the eyes. Who says Bob can't perform? Every line *meant* something, and we all knew it. We might never understand it, but those minutes showed as well as any that we were in the presence of one of the great performing poets of our time. Treasure these moments; they'll be wheeling you out when you're 85 to talk to your grandchildren's literature classes about 'em. [2] And then The Never-Ending-Tour Song. Tangled Up In Blue. To be honest, I don't remember much about this song. We knew it; we virtually howled the chorus to the sky. I don't remember what verses were there, or weren't there; I don't remember if it was He or She or I or It or whatever; I remember it was Tangled. And it is tangled; the memories pile up and over here; I can here a detatched voice and a wonderful harp at the same time, with some beautiful backlighting throwing twenty-foot shadows on the wall. The harp. What a harp. A beautiful, swirling, plunging harp, which became a performance in and of itself - as someone far, far better at this than me said of Bob, I could just have died then and there. And the best was yet to come. Incidentally, it was remarkable to notice the way he played. He would solo, flying away with that harp, one hand waving free, and the band would follow. I can't believe that was even possibly practised; it's born of long co-operation and pure skill. And then the arm came out, he danced over towards Larry, and the arm dropped, quite calmly and discreetly; and the band wound up professionally. Incredible. Hardly breaking through the storm of applause, we grabbed a breath and plunged into This World Can't Stand Long. But, believe me, it *can*. This world isn't full of hate; it certainly wasn't by then. If the NET goes on long enough, it'll be solving that problem by itself. We, the audience, didn't know it. But that didn't stop us loving it. And then, I think, the Formation. Or maybe it wasn't here. I can remember it once, early, in full, for almost a minute; it appeared two, three times more, for brief snatches in the encores. I'll know when I hear a tape - talking of which, I didn't see any tapers... But a short break, here. The band traded instruments; Charlie Sexton certainly has some beautiful guitars, and he went through 'em at a fair lick. Wouldn't want to be this guys guitar tech; up and down every five minutes with several thousand pounds of technical artwork in your hands. That red electric job; oh yes. I know a couple of people who'd kill for one of those, and do it over & over again to be able to play half that well. And into Country Pie. People didn't know this one very well - understandably, mind you - and it wasn't too clear what he was singing; by the second & third verses, though, the crowd was in a good groove, smiles broke out around me; we rolled happily on into the body of the electric set. And then an old song, but a good song. One of the first bobsongs I remember, this, played from a very old Greatest Hits tape and happily sung to. It wasn't the same tonight - what was? - but it was lovely, still. It was faster, more impersonal; but even as Bob sang it about every woman, the voice broke through and we could all match a face to it, the way we always have. And, of course, this was a different Bob. He's not hungry any more; he's satisfied. He's in control, it's his world. And, thank God, he never quit. It seems he didn't even quit playing, either; I don't even remember a break between this and You Go Your Way & I'll Go Mine; I'm not even sure I remember the song as an entity, I was so swept up. Regardless of how good it was, though, it *would* pale into insignificance - because, next to it, like a skyscraper over a tin shack, we had Highlands. And, goddamn, it was beautiful. I've got a few versions of this, live, recorded, and none of them seem as good today as it was yesterday. Every word fell into place, every line was there. The eggs were scrambled, but the meaning was clear. And every one of those words rang true, and glowed like burning coals... We cheered when he said "Highlands", and we cheered when he said "Aberdeen". Well, come on, we're entitled to it. Then we settled down for the long haul, of the singing guitars and spirited singing. [3] He smiled, I think, quirkily at the "real blonde" line. Something you're not telling us, Robert? We cheered, I think, at Annie Lennox replacing Neil Young. Why? Why not? Have we had someone bar Neil in this before? I can't honestly remember. I've got a tape of her somewhere; I'll have to dig it out. The line about walking through the park - with the young men & their young women looking expectantly up at him from the audience - was changed, it seemed, but I'm not sure how. It certainly came off well. It was a lovely song. It meant more than it ever has; that night, it climbed the stairs and rightfully showed it had a place along the other long songs - it proved that it was worth being ranked in the same league as Sad Eyed Lady or Desolation. And, for once, you felt that he might *not* want to "trade places with any of 'em", even if he could. He's comfortable now, comfortable being Bob Dylan, in a way that he hasn't seemed to be for years. He's up there, grinning; he's cracked jokes, he's responding to his audience in a way that was missing sadly not too long ago. We rolled through the song, every line there & every line perfect beyond estimation. Almost every line; the last-but-one was ever so slightly rushed, as though he was almost embarrassed to admit that he'd just driven /out/ of the Highlands that morning. Bob, we love you anyway. Come back here as much as you want, we don't mind. Tour the Highlands, in fact. Our hearts are *all* there; there's no shame in admitting it. The applause was astronomical, a solid sheet of noise and pure joy. After this, he could have sat there smoking a rollup for an hour and we would have appreciated it. Then we shot into Drifter's Escape. I knew what it was, but I was still reeling from Highlands. In fact, the only verse I could focus on was the very last one. But, shit, that's a *good* verse. I haven't listened to that album for a long time; I think I'll put it on now. And, as the drifter ran like hell out the back door, a work of art took shape. We thought the harp on Tangled was good. This one was ten times that, and more. It really makes you realise how lucky we are to have the recordings with a harmonica; it certainly is a rare jewel in concert these days. And then That Song. The one we all skip straight to track two on BoB for. Yeah, it's a bit of a lacklustre job on a boot, I know. It's easy to dismiss it. But, whether simply by being there or because this was a wonderful crowd, it was *amazing*. My throat was sore by the end; we were into it, Bob was into it, the band was into it, and I've come round to it as a good song. It's a shit *song*, but it's great to *sing*, if you see me. It may be annoying to listen to, but damn it's fun. And thus we end the electric set. And another storm of applause starts, continuous and unyielding. One optomist waves a cigarette lighter somewhere to the forward right, but stops after a bit and resumes clapping; everywhere, people are cheering, stamping; I see a man in front of me with a clenched fist raised in salute. Somewhere behind me, a thick Clydeside accent yells something to Bob; God knows what it would have sounded like by the time it reached the stage, but it was encouraging at least :-) As my elbows began to file for divorce from my body, citing excess Serious Bloody Agony - I think my shoulders just up and left sometime before that - the band walked out again. We kept kicking up a racket, though God knows why; we had 'em now... You blink and you miss it. Things Have Changed. Half the audience didn't know this existed, and a quarter of the rest hadn't actually heard it. Hot damn, we should have, it should have been played at half-hour intervals by every radio in the country. This song was as good last night as it ever had been; it was sung with feeling and bite. He was truly in his element, with *his* band, and *his* song, in *his* voice. This song was written for this period, and it shows. It is excellent. A real rocker, now, as we segued into Like A Rolling Stone and all hell broke loose again. We all knew this one, and we revelled in it; we don't care who it's about, we love it nonetheless. This is one of The Dylan Songs, to all those dragged along by friends & relatives, and it was performed in a way that befitted its status. But, of course, we had to be reminded of what he was there for; and It Ain't Me, Babe slotted in as the third encore to fill this. Acoustic, sure, but still a nice smart rocker, with Bob quite clearly sweating by now but enjoying himself. He's not there for us, he's not touring so people can see the Poet Laureate of Rock, but he's touring because *he*, Robert Dylan, enjoys it for *himself*. If he was touring as a popular icon, we wouldn't be having 19-song setlists that changed every night. Even so - "God said to Abraham...". There were a lot of kids in the audience, who I recognised as myself four-five-six years ago, in that first flush of Bob-addiction from their parent's collection. They might never have heard of TOOM, or John Wesley Harding, but they knew Highway 61 or BIABH when they heard it. They loved it, and I loved it. What's wrong with a few big names in the setlist? And then, hey, the biggest name of all. Matched, happily, by the biggest chorus of all. We were fired up, we were seriously happy - remember, the summer tour would have ended the show by now, as would most of those before it - and this is a song we knew, in spirit if not word-by word. But we knew it word-by-word anyway; any hesitation brought a chant from the audience of the next line. It's at times like that you realise just how good he was at writing anthemic songs, songs that become *fresh* again when sung by so many voices. That song must be, what, almost 40 years old now? Incredible... Of course, a Bobshow isn't all greatest hits, not even in Scotland and an encore set. To Be Alone With You slotted in, a song that suddenly made people go "huh?". Somehow, no matter how lovely the recorded version was, a happy jazzy song, this managed to surpass it. I think it must be presence alone that does it; whatever the reason, this song seemed to fit one helluva lot better into my mental soundtrack. A little bittersweet for me, in retrospect, given its connotations, but hey... that's life & life only. I called him the Poet Laureate of Rock earlier, and the closer ode finished it. As the crowd roared, heaved, and generally did everything we could, he calmly swung on the acoustic - with that lovely, lovely embroidered leather strap - and kicked off the one I'd been hoping for since it cropped up on the setlist on Wednesday. This song has always meant a lot to me; one of my favourite parting comments has always been to "build the ladder". Sung to us, sung to a crowd soaking up every word, it meant even more. Bob was darting his head left and right, picking out a face here and there, smiling fleetingly with bright eyes. We loved it. Looking right, I saw a little boy in an orange t-shirt, presumably on the shoulders of a parent, a beatific smile on his face and gazing at the stage. I can't help but hope Bob saw him there, and gave him a grin; maybe that's just the optomist in me speaking out. Still, if someone that young is enjoying Bob... the music, and the spirit, has a good chance of forever staying young. Actually, now I've thought about it, this wasn't that amazing a setlist. Highlands, sure, but most of it... reasonably standard fare, it's not something that'd make you bark "Shit! I want a tape of *that*!". Trust me; you *do*. An astronomical show. Anyone offering? [1] ObBob: "Will I do another verse? Uh... shit, *is* there another verse? Let's look at Larry... damn good guy, Larry... is *he* waiting for another verse? Um... no, don't think so... okay, let's just end it there, then... hey, shit, they're clapping, must have done this right! Not bad, Bobby, not bad!" [2] We can but hope. [3] He sang this over 24 hours ago. It still doesn't seem /real/ to me. -Shim. http://www.bastardsquad.org/
Subject: Thoughts On Glasgow.... From: Peter Rice PeterRice@ukonline.co.uk Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 23:20:17 +0100 Glasgow 17-09-00 My second show of the tour after Aberdeen night before. Good sound again in a big metal box. For the first time I saw the "Ladies and Gentlemen will you please welcome Columbia recording artist.....Bob Dylan." being spoken live by a burly man in a grey beard. Looks like Allen Ginsberg's brother, said my friend Tom. Anyway, answered the "is it live or is it a tape?" question for me. Good start with "Somebody Touched Me". Then "Times", less stirring than the night before. About 15 feet away, Bob looked a bit surly, and no communication with the band or audience, but that was all to change. "It's Alright Ma" next up. Lovely version, lots of inflection in the voice. Then long intro, a few guesses from people round about, settles into "Baby Blue" very atmospheric. Helped by the lighting, which is really good these days. Remember the 60 watt light bulb 10 years ago? "Tangled Up In Blue" very lively. Pretty standard version, but Bob getting warmed up and more responsive. Things really took off with "This World It Can't Stand Long." What a sad and beautifully written song. I'd been reading an article about Charlie Sexton's background, http://www.mca.com/mca_records/library/bios/bio.sexton.html and this apocalyptic gospel song seems to fit with that and Bob's world view on the World Gone Wrong sleevenotes. Electric set start with now familiar Country Pie. Band sound just great now. Struck me as a very Southern song, as with "This World". Maybe again Charlie's influence. "Just Like A Woman" was sung with a lot of emotion and facial expression. Eyebrows raised with each vocal inflection. Lovely version. "Most Likely You're Go Your Way" similar to "Before The Flood" arrangement. Wrong to compare, I know, but sounded at least as good as The Band. Bit of shuffling around, Charlie puts on big red ?hollow bodied guitar, Larry on mandolin (I think) and it's into "Highlands". Faster sounding version, which I think fits the unfolding narrative very well. The waitress bit is so funny!!."I'd change places with any of them in a minute if I could." really hit home. Does he think that about his audience? I guess hearing this in my native Scotland which is sort of idealised in the song heightened that sense. Annie Lennox (I wish it had been Bobby Lennox, but you can't have everything.)replaced Neil Young in the lyric. She's from Aberdeen , could Bob have picked up the name from her? We'll never know, and neither we should. A great live song, which is not what you would have expected 3 years ago. Drifter's Escape as per recent "big rock" version. You wonder how Bob can make his harmonica heard among the loud guitars, but he does and it sounds perfect. Rainy Day Women sometimes sounds routine, but not tonight. A supremely daft song, Bob revelling in that riff. Doing his modified Chuck Berry routine. Into the encore, Things Have Changed was great, again. Rolling Stone seemed to have a different sounding intro, would like to hear this again. It Ain't Me Babe was sung in a wistful sort of style. Some people tried to join in the "no, no no's" and start a handclap, but the song wasn't done as an anthem and this didn't fit the mood. From where I was standing the handclap was out of time, for a moment it sounded like a slow handclap like on Live 66. Quite dramatic, until you realised what was going on. Faded away quickly. I've never been a great fan of Highway 61, and tonight was nothing special, but "the next time you see me coming you'd better run." leapt out tonight. Great image, wouldn't we all be running at the Second Coming?? During Blowin' In the Wind there was this strong sense of here's this man, who's done all this work, and means all these things, standing a few feet away, singing this song that I've known for as long as I can remember. Lucky us, he's still on the road. Funky intro into "To Be Alone With You" never heard this live before. Again a very Southern sound. Great guitar, tight arrangement, How many songs have this lot worked up? Lovely Forever Young to finish. I think Larry/ Charlie on the choruses works really well. Bob fits in round about them whatever way he wants. Another great show. Two hour show. 8 repeats from last night, but felt like a very different show. The mid section from This World to RDW felt pretty adventurous. A good time to be a Bob fan. Peter
2000: March - April - May - June - July - September

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