The final gig of Bob Dylan’s fall tour was last night in Chicago, at the Chicago Theater. Support acts Elvis Costello and Amos Lee joined Bob on stage for I Shall Be Released.
It’s well known that Elvis Costello performed on October 25th at Hillary Clinton’s 60th birthday and fundraising bash at the Beacon Theater in New York. Those who heard his political commentary during this tour would not be too surprised that he chose to do this kind of thing for Hillary, versus, say, Dick Cheney. (Although someone might tell Elvis that Hillary hasn’t actually committed to withdrawing from Iraq on any definite timetable — this seeming to be a big issue for ol’ Declan.)
Some outlets also reported that Bob Dylan was at the event, as an audience member. The shock/horror some of us might initially feel at this news should however be abated with the realization that the other main musical act for the night was The Wallflowers, featuring, of-course, Bob’s son Jakob. October 25th was an off-night for Dylan’s tour. If he spent it watching Costello and The Wallflowers perform at the Beacon Theater, well, why not? He’s nothing if not his own man, as the global warming enthusiasts have recently discovered to their chagrin. While not having any inside line on who Dylan likes for 2008 — if anyone — I think a lot of us would picture him casting a jaundiced if also somewhat amused eye on the political theater at the Beacon. If I’d been invited to go, I sure would have too, just for the amusement factor, although I certainly wouldn’t have paid for a ticket (and I have no idea if Bob did, although it seems extremely unlikely).
In other Dylan news, the DVD called “The Other Side of the Mirror” was officially released today, featuring footage of Bob performing at the Newport Folk Festival between 1963 and 1965.
Produced and directed by Academy Award winner Murray Lerner, The Other Side Of The Mirror – Bob Dylan Live At The Newport Folk Festival 1963 – 1965 opens a window into a critical epoch in American cultural history as reflected in the musical transformations of Bob Dylan’s galvanizing watershed performances at the Newport Folk Festival in 1963, 1964, and 1965. With more than 80 minutes of exquisitely filmed performances, (70% available for the first time), fans will have a front row seat in watching the musical transformations of Bob Dylan during his seminal years.
I don’t have it in hand just yet, but I’m certainly greatly looking forward to it. As I understand it, it’s just the footage, not broken up by any extraneous blabbering, which sounds like good judgment to me.
Something I won’t be seeing anytime soon is the exhibit of Dylan’s artwork which has now opened in Chemnitz, Germany.
The king of all media, indeed.