"St. Annie" <botticel...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
> The drive in 85-degree sunshine up the Hudson River, on the back
> roads, is one of the prettiest things about living in New York State.
> And the Albany exits are streamlined and easy; congratulations to the
> Times Union Center for being one of the most accessible venues of its
> type. Straight off the interstate onto Broadway and there it is. But
> since I got there at 4, I kept driving along Broadway and saw some of
> what seemed to be an almost empty city: the riverfront, the State
> House and Empire Plaza, a huge park full of kids on ponies for a horse
> show. That was adorable to watch while I got out and stretched my
> legs. Then I went on up the river to Menand, about two miles, and the
> Albany Rural Cemetery - where Herman Melville's grandfather and a guy
> called Thurlow Weed, the first great fixer in American political
> history, are buried. Thought it might be scenic and educational to go
> there, and it was, and southern girls don't think it's weird to visit
> cemeteries. Except as I headed back down a beautiful hill to the car
> the heavens opened. Tremendous wild wicked thunderstorm - I should
> have seen it coming in that orange sky. Around 5 it broke loose in
> the heights above the river, and I could have been swimming down the
> hill by the time I got back to the car. Except for the lightning
> strikes all around, and the falling tree limbs, it was actually fun.
> Wrung out my dress, climbed into the car, and back to town and into
> the parking deck. The deck snuggles up to the back of the arena,
> where were parked, all the way around back, in a T almost against each
> other, two buses: one with a little trailer behind it and Tennessee
> plates; the other smoother, better windows, understated dark paint
> job. I changed out of my sopping clothes into jeans and a t-shirt in
> the car. And as I got out and locked up, Bob walked from the first
> bus to the second, where food had arrived just as I pulled in. Bob in
> black, strolling across the little strip of parking lot. Nice to
> glimpse him, in that bright twilight after an almighty rainstorm.
> There were three or four other people walking out of the deck with me
> at the same time, looking over, and none of us said a word or made a
> sound - just watched and kept walking. He got on Bus II, and the
> curtains shut immediately.
> Suppertime: good idea. Right out of the parking deck is a sweet
> little Italian family restaurant with fine basics. Spaghetti marinara
> and an iced tea for me, and watching on the bar tv while Arizona beat
> up on the Cubs at home in Wrigley. Lou Piniella looked even more
> unhappy and cross than usual. Poor Lou. I finished supper by 6:45
> and thought I'd cross the street in time to hear Amos Lee, since I
> missed him in Charlottesville.
> He's still easy on the eyes, and such a generous, tuneful voice. Also
> a lovely stage manner. When the wasted 20-year-old guys behind me (on
> the floor, close enough to be heard and also seen), allegedly
> musicians, got tired of complaining to each other about not being Amos
> Lee and instead began to yell "Where's Elvis?" he was gracious and
> funny. He did a gorgeous Black River. Lee had a number of fans in
> the audience, though the median age was about 50 (and men of course
> outnumbered women by at least 5 to 1. Typical for the Bob Show: it's
> great. Like going to a ballgame. The lines at the men's room are
> always huge, and no line at all for the ladies!). Anyway, Lee got a
> deserved good hand at the end. I saw people buying his cds during the
> Elvis opened with "Red Shoes," a perfect upbeat classic for him. No
> talking at first, just singing. "Veronica" always makes me weepy.
> Later, his anecdotes about Arnold Schwarzennegger and the fact that
> his twin 10-month-old sons, born in the US, will someday be able to
> run for president, and Arnold can't, were nice - as was his rap about
> raising them on the road, where they spend their bus time playing
> cards, smoking cigars, and learning to bet on horses. He has a huge
> amount of skill and good nature. Played a number of saddish songs and
> put us in a contemplative reflective mood that remained - but took on
> a whole lot more energy and oomph and bite - in Bob's set.
> Leopardskin was the opener - it was awright; snappy and twangy. Don't
> Think Twice was truly excellent. With only a few exceptions it was a
> bitter-love, abandoned-love, love-sick set last night, and that was
> I'm sorry to say right down my alley these days. But then it's always
> as if Dylan knows things nobody else does, and you just call it
> coincidence. Simple Twist of Fate was a tale slowly told, with almost
> a waltz beat to it. At the end of Rollin & Tumblin, Bob stepped back
> to his harmonica stand. Oscar is there, with a little light above his
> head that hovers over him and makes him look as if he's taking a
> shower. It was humid, and buggy, in Albany - those nasty little
> flitting bugs everywhere. One was zipping around Oscar, and Bob, with
> a flick of his hand, shooed it away. This made me smile.
> When the Deal Goes Down had some really sweet high notes in it.
> Dylan's voice is only gravelly and growly when he sings low. When he
> sings high, he's still got those light clear tenor notes that are I
> think his truest singing voice: think of the duets, released and un,
> with Johnny Cash. Johnny sings bass/baritone, Bob takes the tenor,
> and gorgeously. Till I Fell in Love With You was quite simply what I
> most wanted to hear. And there it came, talky and weary and fierce,
> ragged and resigned and angry, a world of pain and resilience all at
> once. Like a bunch of songs in the set, the band gave it a bump-and-
> grind beat at the start and the finish; you could strip to the way
> some of the songs in the Bob Show are arranged these days. And the
> way the band smoke on a few of them, you want to.
> At the end of the song Dylan dropped a harmonica, knelt smoothly and
> retrieved it, hitched up his black cowboy britches, and did the best
> Workingman's Blues I've heard: hot as sun, the lyrics with every word
> bitten out, clear as clear. When he sang the line "wanna look in my
> eyes, please do," he widened them and looked straight up and out. And
> they're like crystal, the brightest, lightest, clearest of shade of
> true blue. He's performing more, like that, in his songs these days -
> using hand gestures, turns of the head, movement for emphasis and
> delivery, and it's great. Followed by a fine Things Have Changed
> (another one I was hoping to hear). Ditto for Aint Talkin. Hattie
> Carroll was quite moving, as always. Summer Days was cranky and
> flattened, and made the hellish heat in the concert space seem
> redundant - everyone was sweating like thieves by the middle of
> Elvis's set, and I hate to think how it was for the guys up there in
> suits under the lights. The encore was something new, something old:
> Thunder and Watchtower, both solid. In a little bit of a hurry. At
> the end they assembled for a nice bow. Stu is playing wonderfully,
> and I've never seen anyone look happier to be on a stage than
> Escaped the parking deck straightaway. The buses were gone. Me too,
> I thought, as I got out fast and zoomed up and onto the Thruway, on my
> way to spend the rest of the weekend in Cooperstown. Where 87 splits
> off to Montreal, and 90 goes due west, a bus had screwed up and was
> moving across the split, signaling to come back onto 90. I slowed
> down and let it: Tennessee plates and a little trailer behind it.
> Well, well, I thought. On the road to Syracuse. And then I looked in
> my rearview and saw its twin, following a safe and responsible
> distance behind. I stayed in the Bob-and-Elvis sandwich almost all
> the way to Utica. 90 thinned out to nothing after about 20 miles, and
> the rest of the way it was just the three of us, in the rain. Once I
> slowed - it was pouring - and the bus behind me passed me, nice and
> carefully. It made me glad to see it moving that way: precious cargo
> inside. As it rolled by me the windows were semi-shuttered in the
> front, and closed to the back. Through the slits of the shades I
> could see a big video screen, playing. Then it went on ahead.
> California plates, beginning 4NAU. For now. I loved it.
> What was on the screen, I wondered? It was in black-and-white, which
> increases by about 75 or 80 percent the probability that it was
> something pretty good. I'd surely rather have been stretched out on a
> big old sofa, watching John Wayne and Claire Trevor, or William Powell
> and Myrna Loy, or Cary Grant and Kate Hepburn, or Gable and Harlow,
> than driving in the dark and the rain with the spray from bus wheels
> all over my windshield ....
> They slowed in a patch of construction and I slid around again, back
> in the sandwich. Stayed there until I was at the last exit for
> Cooperstown. The Baseball Hall of Fame, and a superb hotel on the
> lake, were waiting for me 14 miles away, and it was just past
> midnight. I took my exit, and watched the second bus catch up to the
> first, nothing between 'em now, heading west. Now, as I sit here in a
> gorgeous place surrounded by baseball history and fall leaves for the
> weekend, getting ready to go watch a bunch of Hall of Famers play in
> Doubleday Field on this summerlike afternoon, I admit I'm more than
> tempted to go on to Syracuse myself Monday night. Last night's show
> was just so good, from start to finish, from A to B, Amos to Bob. But
> Monday's not a holiday for me, and conventional wisdom says gainful
> employment is good to retain.
> Apologies for a giganormously long post. It really truly was an
> evening to remember, and it's got me in a better frame of mind for
What an enjoyable read, St. Annie. "Thanks a lot!"
Driving up the Hudson is always nice... I really like the 9 and 9-G
area... Where did you start from?... Did you pass Bannerman's
I'm in awe.
I cd go on ramblin' 'bout how i went down to visit my ma today, and in
returning the exit from the gardenState parkway was backed up miles to
the 287 to the TappanZee bridge, which normally i might bail the 287
to the Palisades north to the Bear Mountain (yes, that Bear Mountain)
bridge thru Peekskill (yes that Peekskill... see robeson, paul) & over
the 6 ta home, but it was so bad today i just headed due north on the
87 NYS Thruway which wasn't closed but jammed southIrons Bound way
past Sloatsburg & so i headed to the 84 at Newburgh & across the Ham
Longer in miles but at least i was moving.
Got only two things to say about yr Report.
Wrung out my dress,
I changed out of my sopping clothes into jeans and a t-shirt in
a coupla images i won't soon discard from my mind.
Spaghetti marinara and an iced tea for me
I'd go with bolognese, but iced tea works except if it's presweetened.
My ma never sweetens her iced tea. Too hard to clean the encrusted
sugar out the bottom of the glass. Only lemon.
Anyways, glad yer show was so good. I'm still downloading Bridgeport;
i thnik, despite my adversion to the gargled rocks & gravel voice
bob's presenting nowaDays Like you say:
Dylan's voice is only gravelly and growly when he sings low. When he
sings high, he's still got those light clear tenor notes that are I
think his truest singing voice
I think what i heard the week before, he moved thru his entire range
without croaking on some of the later songs. WMB2 & NM possibly, but
i'm disinclined to speak falsely now. I'm still downloading evidence,
& may check back later to report. Or not. It don't much matter in the
In any event, thanks for the whirlwind tour & the excellence of
that's three or five.
But Monday's not a holiday for me, and conventional wisdom says
gainful employment is good to retain.
Apologies for a giganormously long post. It really truly was an
evening to remember, and it's got me in a better frame of mind for
yea heavy. no need to apologise. i asked my boss, i said, Boss, do we
got monday [Columbus Day Observed as a holiday, for nonAmericans] & he
said "yeh, we got monday, but we gotta work" him probably wanting the
day more than me.
"a better frame of mind for today"... i thnik bob said if today was
not a crooked highway & also "There doesn't seem to be any tomorrow.
Every time I wake up, no matter in what position, it's always been
If tomorrow wasn't such a long time.
Hey, do you know what song it is that says something like "we spend so
much time growing old"?
Yrs in all thnigs dylna,
Yes, it is -- this time I came up from the city along the Taconic and
then rambled around Columbia Co, 66 and 20 and lots of little
backroads. But I love the 9s, the closer to the riverbank the better.
Heya and thanks for all you say here, President D. And oh, that
"Groundhog-Day" feeling of it's always been today. Amen to that.
Sometimes it would be GREAT if it could just for once manage to be
Sloatsburg can be an almighty nightmare. This is one of the many
reasons why this last time I came up the Taconic nice and easy,
wriggled through Columbia Co, and then snuck over to Albany.
But I came back from Cooperstown on 28 all the way -- a great stopover
in ole Woodstock and then, yes, on the Thruway. It was empty except
for the 18-wheelers by the time I hit it. Pulled into a prime parking
spot at home barely 2 hours later, singing along with "Never Say
Now you've got me thinking -- "We spend so much time growing old."
Gotta look it up. Even as I am hearing in my head Bob reading the
melancholy Jaques's speech on the 7 ages of man, from TTRH Young &
Yrs right back,
I saw it and thought it - you said it.
I was at the same show; driving up from Virginia; went through
probably the same thunderstorm.
As usual, I arrived at the show fashionably late and most likely
missed the downpour in Albany.
Whoa, you must have had much better seats than I had. Last time I saw
Mr. Dylan I could actually see the sweat dripping from his nose.
Not so this time, as it goes with last minute tickets.
As the show began, posts of how Mr. Dylan's voice sounded like he
swallowed a bucket of sand sprang to mind. At what point, to me, it
turned to a fabulously wonderful coarse velvet, I don't know.
We have just moved to the Cooperstown/Oneonta area, but... next time
you're all in town, please look me up
Good eye on Oscar.