October 29, 1994 |
It was a sight to behold. Toward the end of Bob Dylan's concert at the Tower Theater on Thursday night, the famously misanthropic bard allowed his flock to approach the altar. With the venue's officious security force powerless to stop them, many in the reserved-seat crowd of rowdy graybeards, grungy teens and twentysomethings rushed to fill the aisles. After a storming "Maggie's Farm" that raged like a nor'easter (and included that rarest of Dylan moments: a brief, cryptic smile)
July 31, 2013 |
The freewheelin' Bob Dylan is always good for a surprise on stage. The songwriting sage, now 72, has perplexed concertgoers by garbling his treasured lyrics and murkily arranging his hits into unrecognizable entities for better and worse. His never-ending tour, too, has had its share of left turns, like its summer of concerts at baseball fields. This season, Dylan's touring twist came by inviting his spiritual indie-rocking children, Wilco and My Morning Jacket, to his Americanarama Festival, which made a much-anticipated stop Sunday at Camden's Susquehanna Center.
August 27, 2006 |
Bob Dylan is a doomsayer, spreading the word that trouble is on the way. He's a crusty romantic "studying the art of love," still hopeful, at 65, that "it'll fit me like a glove. " And he's a devilishly cheery troubadour with a Snidely Whiplash mustache who playfully couples "I got the pork chop, she got the pie" with "She ain't no angel, and neither am I. " Modern Times (Columbia . ?), Dylan's 44th album and his first in five years, contains multitudes. No surprise there.
November 20, 2007 |
For Todd Haynes, there was never going to be only one Bob Dylan. "There was a question of whether there should be six, or seven, or 20," says the director about I'm Not There, his perfectly titled movie about the most elusive of musical icons, in which Dylan is played by Cate Blanchett, Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Ben Whishaw, and 11- year-old African American actor Marcus Carl Franklin. "But the idea of multiples as a way of getting to something true about him was almost plain as day," says the Far From Heaven director of the experimental biopic he conceived during a cross-country drive with a slew of Dylan tapes for company.
September 25, 2013 |
Suddenly, it's a David Bromberg convergence: Work from his past and work from his present are hitting simultaneously. Tuesday brings the release of Only Slightly Mad , Bromberg's third album after returning in 2007 from a 22-year hiatus from recording. Also out on Tuesday is Live at Caffè Lena: Music From America's Legendary Coffeehouse, 1967-2013 , a three-disc compilation that includes a 1972 Bromberg performance of "The Holdup," an amusing song he wrote with George Harrison.
June 24, 1995 |
Last week's announcement that Bob Dylan would play the Theater of Living Arts was accompanied by an explanation: Dylan, now touring stadiums with the Grateful Dead, was restless. He had days off, and wanted to play. But few in the TLA's capacity crowds Wednesday and Thursday could have been prepared for what they encountered: Dylan was being literal. Not content to stroll through his house blend of hits and back-page obscurities, he wanted to play. As in, play guitar. As in, play guitar solos.
July 21, 1986 |
As the ultimate singer/songwriter of the contemporary folk and progressive rock eras, Bob Dylan has always had his pick of great and worshipful sidemen (and women), from Joan Baez to the Band, Al Kooper & Mike Bloomfield to the Rolling Thunder brigade and Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler. None has ever put Dylan's gritty visions into as sweet and commercial a context, though, as his latest recruits, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, who joined Dylan for two very satisfying shows at the Spectrum, Saturday and last evening.
November 20, 2012 |
Guessing what Bob Dylan might do next - and pondering why he does what he does - has been a time-consuming avocation for amateur Dylanologists for pretty much the entire half-century of his incomparably inscrutable career. On Monday, the mysterious man in the white boater hat played the Wells Fargo Center in South Philadelphia, on a double bill that also featured Mark Knopfler, the former Dire Straits frontman who produced Infidels , Dylan's standout album from 1983. This date on the Never Ending Tour had a more compelling raison d'etre than most.
August 4, 2013 |
Last weekend, instead of hanging around for the XPoNential Music Festival in Camden or the Mad Decent Block Party across the river at Penn's Landing, I headed north more than 300 miles, to the Newport Folk Festival in Rhode Island. I'd never been. Newport belongs among U.S. music festivals that were 1960s flashpoints, along with Woodstock, Altamont, and, to a lesser extent, Monterey. Joan Baez rose to stardom at Newport in 1959 (the very first year of the fest, born five years after the inaugural Newport Jazz Festival)
April 19, 2012 |
Levon Helm, the Arkansas-born drummer and singer for The Band, the four-fifths Canadian ensemble whose music in the 1960's and '70s, some of it with Bob Dylan, endures as a high-water mark of quintessential American rock and roll, has died of cancer. He was 71. "Levon Helm passed peacefully [Thursday] afternoon," according to an announcement on his official Website. "He was surrounded by family, friends and band mates and will be remembered by all he touched as a brilliant musician and a beautiful soul.