By the time we did the Australia and Europe tours we had discovered whatever this thing was. It was not light, it was not folky. It was very dynamic, very explosive and very violent.
By this point, Dylan, Robertson, and Co. knew instinctively that what they were doing was right, in every sense of the word. If the Hawks had been a little hesitant in their playing back in the fall of 1965, the music they were producing now was stately, immense, compelling. The sound itself had a thousand precursors, but no precedent. It was, indeed, ‘very explosive and very violent.’
~Clinton Heylin (Bob Dylan: Behind the Shades Revisited)
Dylan’s 66 world tour is the best tour ever… by anyone. I know you all agree.
|The Bob Dylan World Tour 1966 was a concert tour undertaken by American musician Bob Dylan, from February to May 1966. Dylan’s 1966 World Tour was notable as the first tour where Dylan employed an electric band backing him, following his “going electric” at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival. The musicians Dylan employed as his backing band were known as The Hawks; they subsequently became famous as The Band. The 1966 tour was filmed by director D. A. Pennebaker. Pennebaker’s footage was edited by Dylan and Howard Alk to produce a little-seen film, Eat the Document, an anarchic account of the tour. Drummer Mickey Jones also filmed the tour with an 8mm home movie camera. Many of the 1966 tour concerts were recorded by Columbia Records. These recordings produced one official album, the so-called “Royal Albert Hall” concert, and also many unofficial bootleg recordings of the tour.Dylan’s 1966 Tour ended with his motorcycle accident on July 29, 1966. Subsequent to Dylan’s withdrawal to Woodstock, he refrained from undertaking a major tour until 1974.
Continue reading April 13: Bob Dylan Sydney, Australia 1966 (audio) →
You walk into the room
With your pencil in your hand
You see somebody naked
And you say, “Who is that man?”
You try so hard
But you don’t understand
Just what you’ll say
When you get home
Because something is happening here
But you don’t know what it is
Do you, Mister Jones?
Yeah, That’s a fantastic shot isn’t it? You know, that was a home-made lens, I made that lens. There was no lens like that then, it made marvelous distortions. I love it, the light would flare out.
~D.A. Pennebaker (from “Who threw the glass Magazine”)
19 May 1966
Continue reading (probably) May 19: Bob Dylan Ballad of a Thin Man, 1966 (Video) →
CBS records this concert. A PA recording of the acoustic half of the show is subsequently widely bootlegged. The extant tape features “Visions of Johanna,” “Fourth Time Around,” “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue,” “Desolation Row,” “Just Like a Woman,” and “Mr. Tambourine Man” (but not “She Belongs to Me,” presumably performed). Although the acoustic set seems to be well received, the audience is hostile throughout the electric set. One review of the show is headlined “Night of the Big Let Down.” According to Robbie Robertson, some of the audience were even holding up placards saying “Stop the War.” A recording of “I Don’t Believe You” from the electric set is eventually released on the Biograph set, incorrectly assigned to Belfast.
~Clinton Heylin (Bob Dylan: A Life in Stolen Moments Day by Day 1941-1995)
Another Great 66 gig.
Continue reading May 5: Bob Dylan concert in Dublin 1966 (audio) →
If not the best sounding recording, Liverpool is as good a performance of the electric set as you will find on the tour. Perhaps inspired by playing the hometown of the Fab Four, the band is tight and powerful. Dylan’s vocals, Robbie’s lead guitar playing and Garth’s erie B-3 all seem truly inspired.
…… that they could go on stage in Liverpool in May 1966—the city that had so recently been the centre of the musical universe— and hurl at their audience rock music a thousand times more sublime, challenging, multi-layered and exciting than anything Liverpudlians had ever heard before? Impossible to say, but easy to prove. Play that night’s ‘Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues’. By this point Dylan’s cawing voice and searing harmonica were both perfectly integrated instruments in amongst those of the Hawks, whose hardwon knowledge of each other’s playing freed them all to ride each moment in a ceaseless interchange of fiery, creative levitation.
~Michael Gray (BD Encyclopedia)
One of the best concerts I’ve heard from the 66-tour..
Continue reading May 14: Bob Dylan & The Hawks: Odeon Theatre, Liverpool, England 1966 →
Dylan’s voice is extremely rough, but the performance, if anything, even more intense than the English shows
~Clinton Heylin (A Life In Stolen Moments)
Great 66 Show where Dylan sounds very stoned, and still brilliant.
For this show he uses a borrowed guitar, as his had been broken. When compared to the Sydney show, this performance is more laid back.
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
20 April 1966
Continue reading April 20: Bob Dylan Concert in Melbourne 1966 →