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Bob Dylan 980703 in Montreux, Switzerland

Subject: Montreux 3. July 98
From: Laeng Christoph (
Date: Sat, 4 Jul 1998 10:13:32 +0200

They did play the following songs:

Gotta serve somebody
The man in me
(These two were ok, but  just warm-up-song)
Cold irons bound (big cheers, very loud!)
I'll be your baby tonight (the best version of this song i ever heard,
     at least better than in 94)
Can't wait ( wow, I didn't know how good this song really is!!!)
Silvio (loud anrocking)
Mr. tambourine man (good , but there are better versions)
the times they AAAAAAaaaaaaaare a-changing (simply great)
Desolation row
(I didn't recognize it first, but when he started to sing _they're selling
postcards_ the man besides me looked at his watch, maybe he feared to miss
the bus. During this song they had to carry away a man in the first row,
Dylan just smiled and played another solo. After this song he said something
about _getting out of here_ and _yes it is really hot in here_) very good
Tangled up in blue
(simply the best version of this song with a not so good harmonica solo at
the end. definitely the highlight of the show!!)
Til I fell in love with you
(much better than on CD, and I like the CD-version)

(after a very short break)
Love sick
(A lot of people said before the show they would like to hear this song, big
Rainy day women
(lights on, people were dancing everywhere, big party, Bob is nearly
_dancing_ on stage too)

We thought the show was over, but they returned, took the guitars and began
to play something that sounded familiar but I could not recognize it. The he
begins to sing _how many roads.._ . Wow I never expected to hear Blowing in
the wind tonight (again, really one of the best versions I ever heard.)

One question remains:
Who the hell is this girl in the first row, Bob was singing, smiling and
playing for (especially during love sick)?

Christoph review in German.

Subject: July 3, 1998 - Montreux, Switzerland - a review From: Carsten Wohlfeld ( Date: 08 Jul 1998 13:00:00 +0100 Bob Dylan Montreux, Switzerland, July 3, 1998 Montreux Jazz Festival, Stravinski Auditorium A Review by Carsten Wohlfeld After the pretty good show in Dijon we spend the off-day in sunny Lausanne, right next to the staggeringly beautiful Lac Leman. Montreux is only 20 miles away from Lausanne, so it made much more sense to stay in a budget hotel there rather than paying the ridiculously expensive Festival prices in Montreux. Montreux is an amazing city though. The main street is right next to the lake, and is was sunny throughout the day, except for a short and heavy rainfall in the afternoon. It was my first time there and it was pretty amazing, cause you don't expect a city in the south of Switzerland to look a lot like Miami Beach, with all the palms and the chrystal clear water... The Congress Centre is a huge building that not only includes the Montreux Jazz Festival offices, but also the two venues, the Miles Davis Hall and the Stravinski Auditorium, where Bob was going to open the 32nd annual Montreux Jazz Festival and where he had played before in 1994. We got our official T-Shirts for $18 (designed by Phil Collins, but very nice looking nevertheless) and then started getting in line, while enjoying the free internet services in the lobby and watching Italy lose against France in the soccer worldcup. The venue itself is a rather small theatre-like place, with standing room on the floor and plush seats in the balcony. Very similar to the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, where Bob played in 1996. It holds around 2,000 people and it was the smallest venue of the whole tour. Boogie-Woogie-pianoman-weirdo Al Copley opened and played for 45 minutes. Didn't like it at al, although I have to say that his pianoplaying was impressive. After his set the TV cameras were turned off and we were allowed to get up right to the very low stage... some of us almost could've reached Bob's microphone. The band didn't use their own PA-system and the stage-set (also designed by Phil Collins) looked very different to the usual black curtain. Very nice. Bob came out at 9.35 to open with: Gotta Serve Somebody At last! Obviously we all wanted to hear this song since we didn't had the chance to hear Bob play it in England and even though his vocals were hardly audible in the bad mix, we all very much enjoyed it and laughed at the "female" backing vocals courtesy of Bucky and Larry... "seeeerve somebody!" The Man In Me was next as expected. It had been on the cuesheet quite a few times before, so it was just a matter of time till he'd play it. Solid performance, nothing THAT special, but nice to hear nevertheless. Cold Irons Bound Bob and Tony had a long discussion before this song, no idea what they were talking aout, maybe Bob wanted to remind Tony that the band better get it right thistime since the last couple of versions weren't too convincing? Solid version. I'll Be Your Baby Tonight Gunter is right, I guess. This is the perfect evidence for the fact that Bob doesn't care where he plays. I don't think that there's a song less fitting for a Jazz Festival than this country-jangle that - to top it al - was very badly performed as well. Around this song Bob mumbled something like "Montreux jazz Festival..proud to be here", even though it might have been ironic, since that's exactly what the somewaht overexcited support act Al Copley had said an hour earlier. "I Believe In You" was on the cuesheet, but wasn't played unfortunately. Can't Wait The intro was messed up, but apart from that it was probably the strongest song of the set so far, definitely Bob's best vocal performance so far. The heat was almost unbearable by now, but Bob's bodygurad and the security did a very good job, making sure nobody got crushed in the front rows and handing out water. Nice. Silvio rocked as usual and had a completely messed up ending, where Larry and David totally lost it. Mr. Tambourine Man (acoustic) I hate to say it, but this was another highlight. Bob really seems to like the song lately, he's always putting a lot of energy into it. Sounded very smooth nevertheless. The Times They Are A-Changin' (acoustic) For people who like greatest hits this was the perfect choice of course, for me it was just another - exceptionally flat - rendtion of a song I don't have to hear again. Desolation Row (acoustic) Known from now on as "the goofy song". It is beyond me how you can smile and dance and play around as much as Bob did on a song like this, but he was obviiusly amused by a guy who fainted right in front of him and then was carried out by the security. "Desolation" was given the usual nice treatment and I think this time he got all the world right, even though I don't think he sang more than six verses. After the song he said something like: "it's so hot... so hot". And then, best joke all night we heard him say: "Carry out more people". Larry almost dropped his guitar cause he was laughing so hard! Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic) Okay, you probably will skip this one since he's doing it every night, but you better read on. This was AMAZING! In 1196 we got the very slow versions with harp that lasted around 11 minutes. When Bob started his Euro tour "Tangled" was around 7 minutes and without harp. Tonight it was veeeeeeeery slow again but featured some of the best and longest guitar slos I've ever heard Bob play! And as if that wasn't enough he reached for the harp at the end. Now Josh is right when he says that his harmonica playing has been just a show effect lately, just 1 minute-and-out for the audience (the solos haven't ben very loud either lately) but tonight everything was gonna be different: This was by far the best harp solo I ever heard Bob play in person and it took at least three minutes, but probably four. I didn't check my watch but I wouldn't be surprised if this song lasted well over 12 or 13 minutes. Bob was drenched in sweat afterwards (despite the heat he was wearing his usual suit - the gray "Grammy" one tonight - and his bow-tie) and looked as if he would've loved to leave the stage right away. But he stayed of course, introduced the band and launched into: 'Til I Fell In Love With You Understandibly it was the greatest version, but better than the cuesheets alternate of "River Flow" and "Highway" without a doubt. We all thought that the strange set 6 electric-4 acoustic-1 electric was due to the heat, but there were actually no more than 11 song-slots on the cuesheet for the mainset. (encores) Love Sick The cuesheet had "Ain't Me Baby" before this one and the roadies had put up the acoustic instruments as well, but - probably due to the heat - Bob skipped it and gave us a tired sounding version of "Love Sick" while flirting with the girls in the first few rows. Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35 Equally tired and of the "glad we're outta here soon" variety. Blowin' In The Wind (acoustic) Crowdpleaser, a little bit out of place at a Jazz Festival, too, I think. Bob wasn't as animated as he'd been at previous shows, even though he obviously liked the low stage and the contact with the audience. Robert wanted to catch the train to Verona right after the show and Gunter and I wanted to get in the car to drive home. Somehow we just felt it wouldn't be right to leave after a show like this, that was very good, 95 minutes song (despite the fact that it only had 14 songs) and somehow was promising a lot more for the shows to come. So we decided to get gas instead of a train ticket for Robert and went south instead of north. We hit Italy at around 2.00 am, passed Milano at 4.00am and reached Verona at 8.00am. Found a very nice and reasonably cheap hotel and took a nap. More from the show in Villafranca di Verona soon. Thanks for reading. Carsten Wohlfeld -- "if you don't stop to smell the roses now they might end up on you" (hsker d)

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