Using Bees To Effect Vengeance
Tuesday, November 20, 2001
Rocks-anne hooked Sonnet and me up with last minute Bob Dylan tickets last night (thanks to K-Rad for graciously passing on the tickets and allowing me to bail on seeing the mighty Spoon with him)! What great friends! How lucky are we??! Very!
We saw Dylan a few years ago at Jones Beach, and it was magical. This time was just as good. He's positively ebullient on stage these days, singing with passion and energy, soloing beautifully (!)...I put it all down to his band. They're just astonishingly supple, tasteful, and attuned to his sensibility, and he clearly has a blast playing with them.
Highlights: a devastating Sugar Baby, a lighter-than-air Summer Days and Summer Nights, a "I don't know why this feels so meaningful to everyone in Madison Square Garden including me, but is sure does" It Ain't Me Babe (during this song I mused on the possibility that it could be about jingoism as well as love -- well, maybe not), a heartbreaking "Just Like A Woman"...
NB: The version of JLAW from the legendary 1966 Albert Hall show is probably in my Top 5 Vocal Performances...in fact it will be my next MP3 of the time increment when I can find a version. The bridge in particular is devastating. If you don't get Dylan after hearing that version, then you might as well give up. Anyway....
...a brilliant Don't Think Twice It's All Right, an obviously charged Blowing In The Wind (in light of 9.11, the Taliban and John Ashcroft, it reveals itself to be a more complicated song than I thought. Or maybe it's the world that's more complicated than I thought. Either way, the audience cheered a little bit louder for the lines about people being free than for the lines about stopping the cannonballs flying)...
Rocks-anne also scored us backstage passes!! Surprising Sonnet with them was one of the highlights of the night -- her expression was priceless. It took about 8 seconds to fully unfold.
My hopes weren't high for meeting The Man -- I hear he's on the bus and pulling out of the lot before people stop cheering -- and frankly I was a little intimidated at the prospect, but I figured:
1) I had to give it a shot. Not doing so would insult the millions of Dylan fans everywhere who would kill for the chance
2) There would be famous people milling around, which is especially exciting to my LW
3) I was hungry, and there was probably food back there
As it happened, once we got through -- we flashed the badges a la Wayne's World; cross another ambition off the To Do List -- we found ourselves in a little ante-hallway with Sheryl Crow, Luke Wilson (sans Gwynny) Jimmy Fallon, Joe Levy (the annoying Rolling Stone editor whose always making a fool of himself on VH1) and some fellow peons.
Sheryl Crow is short. Luke Wilson looked really nice. Jimmy Fallon walks around like a hunchback but seems very personable and had a cute girlfriend. My wife was cuter though.
I wanted to talk to Luke Wilson about The Royal Tenenbaums and our respective North Texas private school educations, but before I could figure out the angle, a bloke came out and asked Sheryl to come back. She grabbed Wilson and headed back there. They were the anointed.
Not long after that, they cleared the hallway, so we all had to leave. No food. No drinks. No starry-eyed audience with Bawb. No Gwynny. Still, lots of fun, and a night to remember.
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