On stage he is always the lieutenant, ready for anything, clocking everything with equanimity, passing on to other musicians his accurate interpretations of Dylan’s often inscrutable nods and narrowings of eyes, yet at the same time smiling at fans and giving every appearance of a contented man who still enjoys his work…. By the end of 2007, he had played at 1900 Bob Dylan concerts, Uncannily, he doesn’t look a day older than when he played his first.
– Michael Gray (Bob Dylan encyclopedia)
Tony Garnier (born Saint Paul, Minnesota, May 10, 1955) is best known as an accompanist to Bob Dylan, with whom he has played since 1989. He is Dylan’s longest-running side-man, and has sometimes been characterized as his “musical director” as well.
In addition to his work with Dylan, Garnier has recorded with Tom Waits, Loudon Wainwright III, Paul Simon, Marc Ribot and Eric Andersen, and was a member of Asleep at the Wheel (from 1976–78) and The Lounge Lizards. He also played with Robert Gordon in the early 1980s. He was also a long-time side-man for David Johansen in his Buster Poindexter persona, and was also briefly a member of the Saturday Night Live house band.
Here are Dylan & Garnier @ the 70th birthday of Apollo Theater – A Change Is Gonna Come (Sam Cooke):
I don’t know how I come to songs, y’know, but doing what I’m doing, I’m doing, er… I mean, it’s not up to me, y’know, I don’t really go into myself that deep… I just go ahead and do it, yeah, I was sort of trying to find a place to pound my nails, y’know.
~Bob Dylan (to Studs Terkel, 26 April 1963)
WFMT-Radio Studio Chicago, Illinois 26 April 1963 Studs Terkel Wax Museum
The Budokan album was only supposed to be for Japan. They twisted my arm to do a live album for Japan. It was the same band I used on Street Legal, and we had just started findin’ our way into things on that tour when they recorded it. I never meant for it to be any type of representation of my stuff or my band or my live show.
~Bob Dylan (to Kurt Loder – March 1984)
I believe this double LP was made available so our hero could boast of being outclassed by Cheap Trick, who had the self-control to release but a single disc from this location.
~Robert Christgau (robertchristgau.com)
Released 39 years ago today (April 23).
The album was slaughtered by many critics.. especially in the US.
The writers complain the show’s disco or Las Vegas. I don’t know how they came up with those theories. We never heard them when we played Australia or Japan or Europe. It’s like someone made it up in one town and the writer in the next town read it. I don’t know what the reviewers mean half the time. I don’t even care.
~Bob Dylan (to Robert Hilburn – Nov 1978)
I’m usually either here or on the West Coast or down in the Caribbean. Me and another
guy have a boat down there. Jokerman kinda came to me in the islands. It’s very
mystical. The shapes there, and shadows, seem to be so ancient. The song was sorta
inspired by these spirits they call jumbis.
~Bob Dylan (to Kurt Loder, March 1984)
Studio A Power Station New York City, New York 14 April 1983 4th Infidels recording session. Produced by Mark Knopfler and Bob Dylan.
This ranks high as one of the most important boot releases of all time, and on top of that, it’s simply a thrill and a joy to just sit back and listen to. If you’re only planning on getting one bootleg this decade, this is the one. Hands down.
Bob Dylan plays his first major solo concert at a major New York concert venue; Town Hall. He still hadn’t released his groundbreaking second album and chose only to play 3 songs from his first album. A confident young Dylan mostly playing songs unknown to the audience & ending with a long spoken poem called “Last Thoughts on Woody Guthrie”.
The Town Hall was about three-quarter full…. not bad considering his only released album had been a “flop”.
It is a GREAT concert… a “must” for any Dylan fan.
The first bootleg recording (with some songs from the concert) started circulating in 1970. The full concert recording started circulating in 2008 (superb soundboard sound).