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Bob Dylan Places/Songs: Aberdeen – Highlands

Aberdeen

Well my heart’s in the Highlands gentle and fair
Honeysuckle blooming in the wildwood air
Bluebelles blazing where the Aberdeen waters flow
Well my heart’s in the Highland
I’m gonna go there when I feel good enough to go
~Highlands (from: Time Out Of Mind)

aberdeen-map

From Wikipedia:

Aberdeen /æbərˈdiːn/ (Scots: Aiberdeen Scottish Gaelic: Obar Dheathain [ˈopər ˈʝɛhɪn]) is Scotland’s third most populous city, one of Scotland’s 32 local government council areas and the United Kingdom’s 29th most populous city, with an official population estimate of 220,420.

Nicknames include the Granite City, the Grey City and the Silver City with the Golden Sands. During the mid-18th to mid-20th centuries, Aberdeen’s buildings incorporated locally quarried grey granite, which can sparkle like silver due to their high mica contents. The city has a long, sandy coastline. Since the discovery of North Sea oil in the 1970s, other nicknames have been the Oil Capital of Europe or the Energy Capital of Europe. The area around Aberdeen has been settled since at least 8,000 years ago, when prehistoric villages lay around the mouths of the rivers Dee and Don.

Bob Dylan has played once in Aberdeen:

Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre
16 September 2000

bd - aberdeen

Aberdeen conference

Live from the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium, Santa Cruz, CA, 16th March, 2000:

Highlands

This great song is #142 on my list of Dylan’s 200 best songs.

Released September 30, 1997
Recorded January 1997
Genre Blues rock
Length 16:31
Label Columbia
Writer Bob Dylan
Producer Daniel Lanois

Highlands” is a song by Bob Dylan, released on his 30th studio album Time Out of Mind in 1997. It is Dylan’s longest known studio recording at sixteen minutes and thirty-one seconds. The song’s title is borrowed from the poem “My Heart’s in the Highlands” by Scottish poet Robert Burns.In the song’s lyrics, Dylan makes references to musician Neil Young and author Erica Jong.
…. and the city Aberdeen :-)

Time_Out_of_Mind_cover

Lyrics

Well my heart’s in the Highlands gentle and fair
Honeysuckle blooming in the wildwood air
Bluebelles blazing where the Aberdeen waters flow
Well my heart’s in the Highland
I’m gonna go there when I feel good enough to go

Windows were shakin’ all night in my dreams
Everything was exactly the way that it seems
Woke up this morning and I looked at the same old page
Same ol’ rat race
Life in the same ol’ cage

I don’t want nothing from anyone, ain’t that much to take
Wouldn’t know the difference between a real blonde and a fake
Feel like a prisoner in a world of mystery
I wish someone would come
And push back the clock for me

Well my heart’s in the Highlands wherever I roam
That’s where I’ll be when I get called home
The wind, it whispers to the buckeyed trees in rhyme
Well my heart’s in the Highland
I can only get there one step at a time

I’m listening to Neil Young, I gotta turn up the sound
Someone’s always yelling turn it down
Feel like I’m drifting
Drifting from scene to scene
I’m wondering what in the devil could it all possibly mean?

Insanity is smashing up against my soul
You can say I was on anything but a roll
If I had a conscience, well, I just might blow my top
What would I do with it anyway
Maybe take it to the pawn shop

My heart’s in the Highlands at the break of dawn
By the beautiful lake of the Black Swan
Big white clouds like chariots that swing down low
Well my heart’s in the Highlands
Only place left to go

I’m in Boston town, in some restaurant
I got no idea what I want
Well, maybe I do but I’m just really not sure
Waitress comes over
Nobody in the place but me and her

It must be a holiday, there’s nobody around
She studies me closely as I sit down
She got a pretty face and long white shiny legs
She says, “What’ll it be?”
I say, “I don’t know, you got any soft boiled eggs?”

She looks at me, says, “I’d bring you some
But we’re out of ’m, you picked the wrong time to come”
Then she says, “I know you’re an artist, draw a picture of me!”
I say, “I would if I could, but
I don’t do sketches from memory”

“Well,” she says, “I’m right here in front of you, or haven’t you looked?”
I say, “All right, I know, but I don’t have my drawing book!”
She gives me a napkin, she says, “You can do it on that”
I say, “Yes I could, but
I don’t know where my pencil is at!”

She pulls one out from behind her ear
She says, “All right now, go ahead, draw me, I’m standing right here”
I make a few lines and I show it for her to see
Well she takes the napkin and throws it back
And says, “That don’t look a thing like me!”

I said, “Oh, kind Miss, it most certainly does”
She says, “You must be jokin’.” I say, “I wish I was!”
Then she says, “You don’t read women authors, do you?”
Least that’s what I think I hear her say
“Well,” I say, “how would you know and what would it matter anyway?”

“Well,” she says, “you just don’t seem like you do!”
I said, “You’re way wrong”
She says, “Which ones have you read then?” I say, “I read Erica Jong!”
She goes away for a minute
And I slide up out of my chair
I step outside back to the busy street but nobody’s going anywhere

Well my heart’s in the Highlands with the horses and hounds
Way up in the border country, far from the towns
With the twang of the arrow and a snap of the bow
My heart’s in the Highlands
Can’t see any other way to go

Every day is the same thing out the door
Feel further away than ever before
Some things in life, it gets too late to learn
Well, I’m lost somewhere
I must have made a few bad turns

I see people in the park forgetting their troubles and woes
They’re drinking and dancing, wearing bright-colored clothes
All the young men with their young women looking so good
Well, I’d trade places with any of them
In a minute, if I could

I’m crossing the street to get away from a mangy dog
Talking to myself in a monologue
I think what I need might be a full-length leather coat
Somebody just asked me
If I registered to vote

The sun is beginning to shine on me
But it’s not like the sun that used to be
The party’s over and there’s less and less to say
I got new eyes
Everything looks far away

Well, my heart’s in the Highlands at the break of day
Over the hills and far away
There’s a way to get there and I’ll figure it out somehow
But I’m already there in my mind
And that’s good enough for now

-Egil

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5 Comments

  1. Bob Dylan appears to really like the highlands having spent big on buying Aultmore House,a splendid highland mansion.

  2. and Bob being Bob he played it the next night in Glasgow. He changed the Neil Young to Annie Lennox who was reportedly backstage.

    • Thanks for your input xxx…

      Setlist in Aberdeen:
      1. Hallelujah, I’m Ready To Go (trad.)
      2. The Times They Are A-Changin’
      3. Desolation Row
      4. Boots Of Spanish Leather
      5. Tangled Up In Blue
      6. Searching For A Soldier’s Grave (Johnnie Wright, Jim Anglin, Jack Anglin
      7. Country Pie
      8. Under The Red Sky
      9. All Along The Watchtower
      10. Not Dark Yet
      11. Cold Irons Bound
      12. Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat

      13. Things Have Changed
      14. Like A Rolling Stone
      15. Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right
      16. Highway 61 Revisited
      17. Blowin’ In The Wind
      18. Cat’s In The Well
      19. Forever Young

      Setlist in Glasgow the next day:
      1. Somebody Touched Me (trad.)
      2. The Times They Are A-Changin’
      3. It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)
      4. It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue
      5. Tangled Up In Blue
      6. This World Can’t Stand Long (Jim Anglin)
      7. Country Pie
      8. Just Like A Woman
      9. Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I’ll Go Mine)
      10. Highlands
      11. Drifter’s Escape
      12. Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35

      13. Things Have Changed
      14. Like A Rolling Stone
      15. It Ain’t Me, Babe
      16. Highway 61 Revisited
      17. Blowin’ In The Wind
      18. To Be Alone With You
      19. Forever Young

  3. a whopping 19 songs…with one of them 14 minutes long! Great setlists, those were the days my friend we thought they’d never end…..