Bob Dylan, Gordon Field House (Rochester, NY): 11/6

Stealing a quote from Jethro Tull: “You’re never too old to Rock’n’Roll if You’re too Young to Die.” Dylan exceed my expectations and put on a fantastic show. Leaving me wanting more and itching to get to another show. I took a friend with me who was not familiar with Dylan. I prepped him on the drive from Syracuse to Rochester, and am happy to announce that we may have a convert. Still got some work to do, but lots of potential. A group of friends bought me two tickets for my birthday – incredibly thoughtful and Dylan certainly did not disappoint. Here is the set list and my impressions of the show:

Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35
Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power)
Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues
Things Have Changed
The Levee’s Gonna Break
The Lonesome Death Of Hattie Carroll
Honest With Me
Forgetful Heart
Cold Irons Bound
Simple Twist Of Fate
Highway 61 Revisited
Ain’t Talkin’
Thunder On The Mountain
Ballad Of A Thin Man
Jolene
Like A Rolling Stone

Favorite Song: Simple Twist of Fate, Dylan stepped away from the keys and played guitar on this one. I was hoping he would play Simple Twist of Fate tonight and I absolutely loved the version. There was a very simple and beautiful guitar rift throughout the song that Dylan traded off with the lead guitarist, great version – would love this version to be on a future bootleg.

Most Impressed By: Dylan and his harmonica. Ever try to play the harmonica?! Not as easy as one would think. Dylan’s talent on the harmonica really showed off tonight. Don’t forget, it’s not all about Bob!! Well, maybe it is – anyways, I thought that the band did a solid job. Simple Twist of Fate and Ballad of a Thin Man were just incredible, great guitar rifts and loved the rolling bass lines. Not to mention the guy playing the key board looked like my economics professor.

Happy to see: A very basic set, no fancy effects on stage – all about the music. Great that the experience was just the audience and the music. I was happy to see that Dylan looked like he was really enjoying himself on-stage. Hopefully this means he will be on tour for years to come. I was also really pleased by the crowd – people off all ages at the event. In a perfect world, I would have been able to go up on stage and find the person who has been to the most shows and meet someone who saw Dylan at his famous Newport Concert. If Bob ever wants me to warm up the crowd – I’m game. I’ve been calling Bob Dylan “B Dizzle,” hopefully this will click with a younger generation. Everyone should listen to Dylan, I’ll save that rant for another post.

Set List Thoughts: Overall, I was happy with the songs on the set-list. I had a pretty good idea what he was going to be playing from following his tour. I was glad he played a lot from Highway 61 tonight (Just Like Tom Thumbs Blues, Highway 61, Ballad of a Thin Man, Like a Rolling Stone).  I was hoping for a few songs from Blood on the Tracks, but if I had to pick one to hear, it would have been Simple Twist of Fate. (I have heard him play Tangled Up in Blue and Shelter from the Storm live before.) I thought the second half of the show was a lot stronger than the first. Stronger song selection in my opinion.

Not so happy: (1) Scary moment – a student fainted in the general admission section and it took way to long for someone to respond. I rushed over to a security guard and they looked confused how to react. I hope the student is ok. Leave it to a Masters of Public Administration student to criticize organizational management. (2) Far less important, security was telling people not to take pictures with their smart phones. Needless to say, their efforts to enforce this policy failed.

I really enjoyed the concert and hope to be able to see Dylan again soon. If you were at the concert too, leave me a comment – it would be great to hear your input!

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