April 18: Bob Dylan If You See Her Say Hello Lakeland 1976





Bob Dylan - Apr18_1976_f

 

April 18: Bob Dylan – If You See Her Say Hello  Lakeland 1976

If you’re making love to her, watch it from the rear
You’ll never know when I’ll be back, or liable to appear
For it’s natural to dream of peace as it is for rules to break
And right now I’ve got not much to lose, so you’d better stay awake
~Bob Dylan (“Lakeland 76” lyrics to If You See Her, Say Hello)

And then, with an ease I find terrifying, Dylan moves into one of the most nakedly personal performances of his career (something like “Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands,” but inverted, and
without the gloss of riddle and mystery): the 1976 version of “If You See Her, Say Hello.”
~Paul Williams (Bob Dylan: Performing Artist, Vol 2: The Middle Years 1974-1986)

For a master of masks and distancing effects this is an extraordinary performance – no-one listening to it can feel anything other than that there is no distance at all between the author-performer and the performance.
~Andrew Muir (Troubadour: Early and Late Songs of Bob Dylan)

Brilliant, breathtaking & brave version of this great song.




Lyrics:

If you see her say hello, she might be in North Saigon
She left here in a hurry; I don’t know what she was on
You might say that I’m in disarray and for me time’s standing still
Oh I’ve never gotten over her, I don’t think I ever will

A bright light from me I saw, a shattering of souls
Just one of them reckless situations, which nobody controls
Well, the menagerie of life rolls by, right before my eyes
[And we?] all do the best we can, which should come as no surprise

If you’re making love to her, watch it from the rear
You’ll never know when I’ll be back, or liable to appear
For it’s natural to dream of peace as it is for rules to break
And right now I’ve got not much to lose, so you’d better stay awake

Sundown, silver moon, hitting on the days
My head can’t toler…understand no more, what my heart don’t tolerate
Well I know she’ll be back someday, of that there is no doubt
And when that moment comes Lord, give me the strength to keep her out

“If You See Her, Say Hello,” in the shocking Lakeland version, becomes a song spoken from that deep sudden urgent place where pain and anger are indistinguishable and their expression seems a violent necessity. Dylan’s 90% new words are humorously contemptuous … and yet the honest, even humble, pain of the earlier versions is also here, and as affecting as ever. No one listening can doubt this is a man talking about his own wife and something that’s going on between the two of them at this very moment, ..
~Paul Williams (Bob Dylan: Performing Artist, Vol 2: The Middle Years 1974-1986)

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-Egil

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