Bob Dylan – On This Day – September 4
“I was amazed when I heard a taped interview with a 15-year-old girl, who was waiting to get into one of my concerts. She said how she digs William Blake and a bunch of others that no one else has read. She was really hip and more free in mind than most of these 22-year-old college kids.”
– Bob Dylan (Sep 4th, 1965)
Hollywood Press Conference of September 4th, 1965:
Bob Dylan announces that his new book Tarantula will be, a book of words, at a one hour press conference held together with David Crosby (plus a woman without shoes! and a man from the record company) at the Beverly Hills Hotel, the day after the Hollywood Bowl concert. Bob Dylan again played word-games with the press.
Whilst not entirely certain, it would seem that the following relates to the so-called Hollywood Press Conference of September 4th, 1965
‘SILENT DYLAN TALKS AFTER ALL’Brigitte Bardot, Robert Goulet and Phil Spector. What have these three celebrities in common? All played a part in one of Bob Dylan’s infrequent Press conferences in Hollywood recently!The shapely French actress’s name arose in the question:“Didn’t you dedicate your first song to her?”
Tousled-haired, sleepy-eyed, faint-voiced Dylan agreed and proceeded to crack up the hardened reporters with his answer to the follow-up: “Why?”
“Why? Come on, you can see? Why! Think it out for yourself!”
Though a local television commentator tried his best to make today’s king of folk n’ roll say that Barry McGuire is a protest singer, Dylan did not succumb, insisting that McGuire is a mixture of country-and-western and modern-day minstrel.
“I think a protest singer is one who sings against his will like Robert Goulet or Eydie Gorme.”Spector proved to be one of his favorite A&R men, though he admitted:“I’ve only heard of a few.”
Meanwhile another reporter attempted to force the undernourished-looking singer into confessing that he and many other performers use drugs. But to no avail.“I wouldn’t know one if I saw one. Why, do you use ‘em?”
he cracked with a smile. Most of the press obviously expected obscure wisecracks from a sullen, sarcastic, rebellious youth. Instead, Dylan began the conference with mumbled, incoherent answers, but soon warmed to his audience, laughing and joking, but giving wild answers to poor or obvious questions, in excellent dead-pan fashion. Perhaps the best example was his comments about movie plans. Speaking out of the top of his head an innocent Dylan elaborated:
“Yes, we’re making one. I’ll play my mother in it. I guess we’ll call it Mother Revisited. I’m quite excited about it.”
This last bit was dragged out in a lazy, completely bored tone. And again, when quizzed on why he was in California, folk music’s boy wonder replied in a manner rivaling the famous Liverpool straight-faced send-uppers:“To find some donkeys. We’re shooting this film about the life of Christ back in New York and we need several donkeys. Also I’m doing a few concerts.”
His serious and thoughtful side came to the fore when discussing his followers.
“I was amazed when I heard a taped interview with a 15-year-old girl, who was waiting to get into one of my concerts. She said how she digs William Blake and a bunch of others that no one else has read.”
“She was really hip and more free in mind than most of these 22-year-old college kids.”
About letters from fans:
“Some of them actually understand. I like to read them.” Politics and political singers crept into the questioning, but Dylan adamantly denied any political connections.
“I’m too busy for that. It’s fine for those who want to mix the two fields, but it’s not for me.”However, he couldn’t let the subject pass without a laugh. When asked about his participation in anti-Vietnam movements, be protested:“I don’t participate in anything. I defy you to name one thing I participated in. Name one!”The conference ended with the all in-black-clad Dylan remaining in his seat several minutes to oblige the photographers. With a wave and a smile, one of the most influential and controversial musical figures of our time concluded a rare 45 minutes of answering a wide assortment of questions, leaving the impression that, if not the boy-genius-next-door, he is at least a lot more human than we’re led to believe.
- 1988 – Lake Compounce Festival Park, Bristol, CT, USA
Dylan again performs “I Don’t Believe You,” but this time with the full band. Also featured tonight are a rare “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” and three songs from Down in the Groove: “Rank Strangers to Me,” “Silvio,” and a disastrous “Had a Dream about You Baby.” Sixty minutes of tonight’s show is subsequently broadcast on a local radio station, apparently without Dy-
– Clinton Heylin
- 1990 – Riverpark Amphitheater, Tulsa, OK, USA
- 1993 – Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, NY, USA
- 1998 – Entertainment Centre, Sydney, NSW, Australia
- 1999 – Troy G. Chastain Memorial Park Amphitheatre, Atlanta, GA, USA
- 2004 – Community America Ballpark, Kansas City, MO, USA
- 2008 – Pechanga Theatre, Pechanga Resort and Casino, Temecula, CA, USA
- 2010 – Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle, Washington, USA
- 2012 – The Capitol Theatre, Port Chester, New York, USA
- 2014 – State Theatre, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Please give me feedback if you now of an interesting “Bob Dylan event” related to September 4