In the autumn, Dylan made what many found a surprising appearance on ‘Saturday Night Live” on NBC-TV on October 20, performing three of the songs from the album, backed by five musicians and three female gospel singers ( and looking, despite the fire- and -brimstone lyrics sung, strangely tame: almost domesticated).
-Michael Gray (Bob Dylan Encyclopedia)
He sang three songs that night. The least memorable was the first, a reluctantly delivered “Gotta Serve Somebody,” complete with a botched lyric. The other two — a passionate acoustic “I Believe in You” and, finally, a proselytizingly blazing “When You Gonna Wake Up” highlighted by searing support from Terry Young (organ) and Fred Tackett (lead guitar) — remain transcendent to this day.
-Villagevoice (Saturday Night Live’s Forty Essential Music Moments, Ranked)
Previous posts in this series:
- Bob Dylan: The Gospel Years, Part 1 – Awakening
- Bob Dylan´s Gospel Years – Part 2: Mysteriously Saved – 1979 Timeline
- Bob Dylan: The Gospel Years, Part 3 – Slow Train Coming (album)
- Bob Dylan: The Gospel Years, Part 4 – Best Song 1979 “Slow Train”