Rochester, New York

Rochester Institute of Technology
Gordon Field House

November 6, 2010

[Chuch LaBlanc], [Stormy McCloud]

Review by Chuck LaBlanc

Saturday November 6th, I was able to see Bob Dylan and his band rock the
RIT campus. I hadn't seen Bob since the Palace Theater shows last November.
I saw 2 of the Palace shows. The Tuesday night show was fabulous with great
guitar by Charlie Sexton and Bob was of fine voice. Unfortunately Werewolf
Bob showed up for the Thursday night show and I found that less enjoyable.I
had been reading reviews of the tour since then and generally the reviews
have been quite positive with most people appreciating the effort by Bob to
deliver the best vocals he can muster each night. So upon arriving at RIT I
was guardedly optimistic about seeing a great show. I want to mention that
I have seen over 100 shows since 1994 and feel that I have never seen a bad
show. Most have ranged form VERY good to other worldly, I'm a fairly easy
mark. I have had a show or two where I felt that maybe I was finally seeing
a bad show but Bob pulled it out by the end  and I leave the show with a
positive glow. The distance from the stage ALWAYS plays a huge part of
maximum enjoyment. I love seeing the sweat drip off of Bobs nose.

Back to the RIT show. When Bobs band hit the stage I couldn't help but
feel that Charlie Sexton did not look maaavelous. He looked MUCH thinner
than I remembered and his complexion was ghostly. For most of the show I
could barely hear his guitar and many times through the show he went down
and played on one knee and it wasn't clear why. I had been hearing about
all the interplay between Charlie and Bob. I saw none of that. 

The first song "Rainy Day Woman" always makes me smile, good opener.Song#2,
highlight #1 "Senor, {Tales of Yankee Power}", one of my top ten favorites
had Bob center stage with mike in hand, maniacal smile on his face
delivering a powerful rendition of one of my favorite songs. #3 song was,
"Just Like Tom Thumbs Blues", well played with Bob playing some interesting
licks. I mentioned to the guy next to me that it seems like Bob's been
practicing. The first few songs were vocally raspy but melodic, if that
makes any sense. Song#4."Things Have Changed", "only a fool here would
think he had anything to prove" Bob is starting to leave the raspy vocal
portion of the show. My friend and I are certain that Bob has all of the
voices that he has used over the years at his disposal to use at any time,
but sometimes he chooses to appear as Werewolf Bob. Fortunately the
werewolf was mostly kept at bay. Song#5 "The Levees Gonna' Break". Bob and
the Band ROCK this song and its synchronicity with the Katrina fiasco makes
it all that more poignient for me. Song #6, highlight #2, "The Lonesome
Death of Hattie Carroll", another top 10 song for me played well
instrumentally and sung with care. Song #7 "Honest With ME" not a favorite
with me BUT Bob seems to like it and I do always get excited to think about
the Chinese Twins coming to town. Song#8, "Forgtful Heart",a sweet song
well played and well sung by the Bobster, another highlight . Song#9," Cold
Irons Bound". I have many,many versions of this song most VERY uptempo
rockers, this version a little slower but still most enjoyable. Song# 10,"
A Simple Twist of Fate" a very beautifully sung and played version that put
it in the highlight catagory for me.Song#11, "Highway 61 Revisited", ALWAYS
a crowd pleaser though this version wasn't quite as rambunctious as some
I've heard. Song#12 Ain't Talkin", good song well played. Song #13 "Thunder
On the Mountain", I find this song, "Summer Days" and "Levees Gonna Break"
so similar that I expect the words of any of those songs to slide in at any
time. Thunder is probably my least favorite of the 3. But it does rock!!!
My friend Angela is calling this tour, the "Ballad of a Thin Man Tour."
This song is played each show with extreme care, vocally instrumentally,and
energetically, it becomes the fulcrum of each night. The encore of two
songs begins with " Jolene" many people say "why Jolene", of all songs.
Well whatever you might think of "Jolene", it gives Stu Kimball a chance to
lay down some serious licks, I liked it. Finally song #16, "Like A Rolling
Stone", a perrenial crown pleaser that has everyone leaving the show well
satisfied. Even though it is usually a verse short, Bob takes the time to
enunciate in fine voice and the instrumentals are crisp and clean.

I am seeing six more shows and have decided to go to Poughkeepsie show
which I was going to skip, but during this show I came to my senses.

Chuck LeBlanc 	


Review by Stormy McCloud

Saturday Date Night

I suppose surprise is something that fuels a good show, Bob Dylan's show at RIT 
was a pleasant surprise.  My date, surprised to even be going to a Bob Dylan show, 
shrugged it off as another "same ole, same ole" concert, but always up for an 
adventure it was off to Rochester we went.  Thankfully it was not raining, nor 
snowing, but it was a breath in the air chilly November evening. Perhaps the 
powers that be in the music business may consider not holding General admission 
shows in upstate NY from November 1st to April 1st.  Sort of like the rule of "no 
parking on the street from November 1stto April 1st." It was bone aching cold and 
damp outside.  Once inside my date found us a piece of the floor sort of by the 
rail in front of the key board.  The show started late, and my date, a curious soul 
found his boots ready to wander.  I was quickly entertained by some comical SUNY 
Geneseo students, who were excited, antsy, because they were seeing Bob Dylan 
for the first time.  These characters did funny impressions of Dylan and made up 
dialogue of what the roadies must be thinking.  When the incense was lighted, 
the kids were breathing deep and inquiring "what is that delicious 'smell'?  Ah, yes, 
the nag champa is back.  It felt comfortable.  These students were most enjoyable 
company.  If I held any expectations or harbored any anticipation then I suppose it
would be that I was looking forward to the clip from the film Intolerance. I had 
recently borrowed the film from the library and I was curious as to which part of it
would be shown, but tonight, no film.  At half past, the traditional biographical 
introduction and the band filed out onto a new stage set. New curtains, new
lighting, and yes was that really a Dylan version of a jumbo-tron on the back curtain…
that showed up during Forgetful Heart.  There wereLots of oohs and awes from 
the audience so happy with the coolness of it all. Some observations of the evening
beside the new stage decor, Bob sported a shorter jacket, new (former) position of
keyboard (not so good) since his pants still aren't as tight as James T. West, new 
backdrops, new lighting, and especially new arrangements, noticeable turn up of 
the key board and Donny's instruments. The band was spot on, crisp like the 
autumn night and warmed you like a log on the fire. Bob's voice didn't sound as 
gruff and growly as remembered from shows attended last year.  The set list was 
most ordinary, with the exception of Senor (tales of Yankee Power), but it was 
the arrangements that captured your attention and provided a bluesy beat. The 
band, the band, the band, it was all about the band tonight; who provide a never 
ending new groove, but this one is on a whole other level.  Bob on guitar was really
Bob playing guitar!I ventured out of the crowd at Highway 61 moseyed over to the 
shop where I met Kyle the helpful and attentive salesman and bought some 
souvenirs. After a stroll around the venue I made my way to the back of the field 
house and stood up in the hall and watched the rest of the show from afar. My 
date, always on the horizon,showed up around Jolene and quizzically asked "what 
do you think?" I smiled and said "the leader of the big ole band has done it again.  
I like it, smells good."   A nod as the date said, "Bob's good."  No surprise there. 
Thanks for a nice evening,   

Stormy McCloud


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