See copyright notice at

Bob Dylan 971201 at The Roxy, Atlanta, GA

On Tue, 2 Dec 1997 11:18:06 -0500, 
Dugan Trodglen  

>Howdy folks,
>        Well the first club date is behind us, and in a nutshell, it was a
>very fine show, though a bit conservative, with Dylan in very fine form.
>I'm sure our expectations for these shows are huge- we've all heard the
>rumors, of course....high-profile opening acts, nutty setlists, special
>guest-stars. Well, the most special guest-star of the evening was our
>former president Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalyn. No, they didn't join Bob on
>Rainy Day Women!

>        Remember those warnings of "Show starts at 8:00 PM sharp!" Not
>tonight at least- the show started around 9:00 because the Prez was late.
>The scene was worth it, though. Carter and his entourage took up about a
>dozen seats in the balcony, and recieved a sustained hero's welcome. They
>were very, very into the show too!

>        It appears that Bob and company didn't arrive in town until today,
>and also didn't convene anywhere for any sort of extensive rehearsal, so
>the prospect of "surprise songs" was dim, at least for tonight. And as far
>as special guest stars, I know from very informed sources that both REM and
>Indigo Girls had to turn down offers to open these shows, REM because of
>band disarray with the retiring of their drummer and Indigo Girls because
>they're on tour somewhere. I t was too late to pull anyone else, so it was
>just Bob tonight. We in the crowd count Jimmy as the opening act!

>        Bob was present at sound check, though, singing his ass off. He
>really put a lot of energy into it, which seems unexpected for a
>soundcheck. Songs that I personally heard that were unusual were an old
>traditional called "White Dove" which they did twice- one time with a
>powerful full band acoustic version, the other time without Kemper in a
>more meditative tone. This was a 3/4 waltz tune, very pretty. He also did
>"Million Miles", even more smoky barrom blues than on the record, very
>minimal. Not much later he did "Standing in the Doorway", no singing on
>this one, but a very lush, quiet instrumental version. God this song is
>going to be good!!!! The version of "Not Dark Yet" in Columbus was very
>rushed and frantic, rough around the edges, so I've been worried about the
>live display of this song. But it was perfect, even if we were listening
>through a thick metal door with an air conditioning unit buzzing in our
>ears. I really hope he premiers this tonight. For the record he also did
>"Cold Irons Bound", "Cocaine", "Stone Walls", "a beautiful "You're A Big
>Girl Now", and  "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere". He also started the soundcheck
>with an indeterminate 12 bar blues tune. I wasn't there, but the witnesses
>who heard it couldn't make it out.

>        So I felt really good about the soundcheck. For the few of us on
>the sidewalk behind the Roxy, it was our own very private, very unusual
>        As far as the real show that night, Bob was in very good voice
>throughout, although his energy seemed to lag as the night wore on. ZThe
>setlist and comments follow:
>        1- Maggie's Farm- The show starts with the old trooper, as the
>crowd seems very interested in President Carter's response. He visibly
>approves. The sound seemed very good, although from where I was standing
>the vocals were a bit distant.
>        2- Shake Sugaree- What a great song, with Bob singing very melodiously.
>Bob really dug into this one and played a few lead figures, if tha's what
>you can call them. My friend who is a musician and who hasn't seen Bob live
>for quite awhile leaned over to me and asked "Is that a solo?" I whispered
>back, "It would take too long to explain." It seems that for the most part,
>these shows have taken on the Time Out of Mind ethic that Bob seems to have
>been nurturing since just before JJ got the boot. No musician stands out,
>except in the most minimal way possible- the important thing is propelling
>the basics of the songs along, no self-aggrandizing posturing by any of his
>bandmates. So his little three note solos are about it as far as solos.
>        3- Cold Irons Bound- This is the 3rd song now, dammit! For those of
>you who havent heard it- buckle in! It's a tour-de-force, you're lead down
>this swampy path of mystery and suspense until the familiar bass line
>premeditates the coming of the song- then Kemper crashes the spell you've
>been suckered into and they all come crashing down as one, pounding down
>the staccato beat, with Bob doing his staccato upstrokes on the guitar
>hovering around the microphones (yes, that's plural) until he seems
>convinced that, yes, indeed, he is hearing voices...."I'm beginning to hear
>voices ..." then staring into the crowd he  growls ".....and there's no one
>around". He wrings every possible nuance out of these words, and then even
>more that I couldn't conceive of. Chilling!
>        4- Simple Twist of Fate- Beautiful, just beautiful. Bob is really
>working hard on the songs through the acoustic set. He barks the lyrics out
>inthe latter verses like the Dylan of old.
>        5- Can't Wait- Simply the best version of this tune yet. I got to
>see the first 13 performances of this tune, and this one rules. Night after
>night he worked on refining his phrasing and his intensity and all the
>variables came together tonight. His vocals arched over the music, his
>lines taking on a bitter, frightening overtone. Very convincing, and
>probably the best performance of the evening. Get a tape of this!
>        6- Silvio- Another warhorse. What was amusing about this was that
>Bucky only played on the instrumental breaks of this song. All the while he
>sat there with a bemused look on his face, hands tucked neatly between his
>legs, singing back-up. Very amusing.
>        7- Cocaine- Another amusing tune, with Larry and Bucky singing into
>Bob's mike on the chorus. Larry would wrench his back around so his guitar
>would'nt slap Bob in the face, and Bucky would lean down in Bob's left ear
>playing the mandolin and they'd all close their eyes and harmonize
>"Coooocaine...." Made me laugh. It was at his time I realized how short Bob
>is in comparison to his string players.
>        8- Tangled Up in Blue- Kinda dull for me, but Jimmy clapped
>enthusiastically thorugh the whole tune.
>        9- Mr. Tambourine Man- It was there. Bob sang it real good.
>        10- Til I Fell In love with You-        It was at this point that
>Bob's energy seemed to drop, and it would slowly drop until the end of the
>show. This wasn't too outstanding, and I've noticed a general trend with
>this tune that Larry is way too loud.
>        11- When I Paint My Masterpiece- Seemingly to rub it in our face
>that we are witnessing this show at the Coca-Cola Roxy Theater in the "town
>of Coca-Cola" as Bob sang it tonight. The crowd reacted loudly when he sang
>that verse. (For those of you that don't know, Atlanta is the world HQ for
>Coca-Cola, so don't expect to find a Pepsi when you visit our fair town.)
>        12- Highway 61- One of my all time favorites, but the energy on
>this was not there.
>        13- LARS- Bob sang this in a very slow, halting, mannered drawl.
>Not the best performance of this by a long shot.
>        14- Don't Think Twice- This was okay, a brief version, no
>extravagant singing, a little spark was there.
>        15- Lovesick- The first lyric fumble was at the very end of this
>tune. Bob was on as far as remembering his lines tonight. He seemed a
>little miffed at Bucky for some reason, they had a little discussion before
>the tune and a few glares seemed to be thrown Bucky's way.
>        16- RDW- Jimmy Carter had moved to the very front row for the
>encores, and by this time was standing and smiling broadly as Bob passively
>performed this dreadful closer.It seemed Bob was pissed and very curtly
>left the stage. He was offstage in aflash without waving goodbye. I was
>wondering if it was something I said!  :)
>        All in all a very good show, the first half extraordinary, the
>second below average. I'l give it a B- . The soundcheck gets a solid A.
>President Carter gets an A+ for sticking around the whole show, Rosalyn
>gets an A- cause I think she took off after "Rolling Stone". I hope to see
>you all tonight. Come on down!
>        Rhett Thomas
>        Atlanta, GA

Subject: Re: Roxy Review- Dec 1 show
From: Mark 
Date: Tue, 02 Dec 1997 20:20:28 GMT
Organization: none
X-Newsreader: Forte Free Agent 1.11/32.235

The show started at 8:20pm. not 9pm
And Rosalyn stuck around till the very end.(so change that rating to
A+ please) She just switched seats. I sat right behind them and Jimmy
stuck his hand out to me after the final song, he's got a great
handshake and think about all the hand that hand has shook!. I walked
out right behind them. I also though Bob took his time leaving the
stage after RDW. And oh I bought that seat at 5 till 8pm from a
scalper for $10 less than face. Jimmy and Ros must have gotten them
from the same dude...well because I was sitting right behind
I'll never forget the smile Jimmy had on his face when I shook his
peace....see ya tonight!


December Setlists