November 23, 2021
Review by Laurette Maillet
I spend the morning relaxing then decide to reach Port Chester in the
early afternoon. I've never been there. I catch a train , then another
train and have to catch the metro north from "Harlem and 125th"...
I seat comfortably when the conductor asks for my ticket and makes a
bad face. Oops! I'm on the wrong train. It's an express train to Stamford.
Another girl also did the mistake. Well! I don't panick. Kindly the conductor
'makes' the train stops at the next station and I wait for the next red train.
I arrive at Port Chester early, too early. It's a nice Latino neighborhood.
I wonder why Bob is playing here instead of two more shows at the
Beacon. I wait in a Cafe for my good Samaritan, Bob Russell , to come
and we have a Latino buffet together. We chat for a long time before
getting inside the theater.
Dylan afficionados had been queing for few hours. I didn't.
1) I'm getting old.
2) it's cold outside.
3) they are people I prefer not to deal with :)
4) the way the stage is designed. The instruments and musiciens are far a
way in the back. Doug literally disappears behind Dylan. Bobby will be
behind his piano most of the time. I believe the rail will be far from the
stage. So...what the point?
There is no interaction between the public and the Band, least with Bobby.
Only few songs are Rock and Rolling.
How can we dance on "Key west" or "Mother of muses". Bobby literally
reads the lyrics from his piano sheets. Better focusing on his diction.
A poetry lecture is better heard seated comfortably :)
So thanx Bob Russell for that ticket on the balcony. We both have a
Bob starts on time. All in black. Nothing fancy.
The stage is the same. A bit too much empty. Particularly for a GA.
The mannequins could have been a must.
The two first songs are mumbled. Bob is too far from the mike. On
"False Prophet" it's better.
If the floor section expects Bob to come close and dance...well! It's not the
good night. He's mainly behind the piano.
On "I'll be your Baby tonight" he is throwing eyes at Tony. He seems to be
angry. At the end he will move to Tony and says words , emphasizing with
his hands. Did Tony played too loud? Covering the piano tune?
I never saw Bob scolding Tony before!
I realize Bob Britt is on acoustic for "When I paint my masterpiece" and "To
be alone with you". It is the highlight for me tonight.
The ERK are borring. The tune maybe slowed down suggests Bob Russell.
Bob sits side way on his piano stool for the intro of " Melancholy mood" which
is for me the sign he is not feeling at his best.
"You've got to serve somebody" will rise the audience ( the ones who are not
already up ) as expected. And " The size of your cock will get you nowhere "
will stir a laugh. It is a repetition!
A déjà vu!
In the middle of "Key west" my back neighbors have the 'good' idea to buy a
beer from the moving merchandise girl and negotiate a business behind my back!
I heard the venues make more money selling booze than renting the place.
We live in a Political world Mr. Dylan!
"Mother of muses" will totally silenced the audience. I feel like in a Church!
Bob's voice is still powerful. But he runs into the songs one after another,
flipping the sheets of his catalog frenetically.
"Goodbye Jimmy Reed" will wake me up.
Bob says " thank you. Thank you in behalf of my Band". Murmurs some words
and presents the musiciens.
I karaoke on "every grain of sand" and stand up to film his departure. His walk is
uncertain and he steps down some steps with pain, it seems to ME.
Bye bye Bobby!
Rest well. Have a massage. And see you tomorrow.
Thanx for being with us!
Review by Larry K.
A stunning show - as other reviewers have written…most impressive were
the “Rough and Rowdy” songs, delivered more strongly than the
recorded versions…”False Prophet” was pure Bob, one of several
transcendent moments…the new band was tight and
focused…”Masterpiece” held a swinging groove and “Grain of
Sand” a heavenly prayer. Vocals clearest on the new tunes; Bob’s
piano varied from rough rhythm to a few sweet solos, sometimes going
against the groove the band was laying down. Not carping, perhaps the man
tries to do too much…but this is a show you must see if you can…great
to hear the Cap audience’s loud enthusiastic response to the new
material…recognizing the presence of genius on that stage.
Review by Barry Gloffke
After finishing his three day Beacon Theatre NYC sojourn, our hero heads
north 30 miles to the understated Capitol Theatre in Port Chester,NY. The
theatre marque was minimalistic (like Dylan’s stage), with a small black
overhang at the theatre entrance, and small, simple white letters:
11/23/21 BOB DYLAN. No lights, no adornments… just plainly stating the
I was at all three of the Beacon shows, they got better each night, but
tonight was good, but not as strong as those shows. It was still a solid
show, with many highlights, some mesmerizing singing and some very
interesting piano playing by Bob. The crowd was not the most enthusiastic
I’ve ever seen and Bob did not help to engage them at the outset as he
was too far from his microphone on the first two songs: WATCHING THE RIVER
FLOW and MOST LIKELY YOU GO YOUR WAY AND I’LL GO MINE. I know this
because my girlfriend and I had early entrance tickets, so we were able to
obtain a perfect front spot on the rail (two shows in a row for me with a
similar vantage point — basically first row both nights). We were close
enough to see him mouthing the lyrics and we could faintly hear him
through the speakers in front of us, but the rest of the arena could not
hear a thing he was saying. Therefore, the first two songs were
instrumentals… fortunately, the Band rocked out on both. Bob overcame
the slow start by delivering a wonderful version of I CONTAIN
MULTITUDES… finally figuring out that he needed to adjust his stance at
the piano microphone to be heard. He sounded pitch perfect again. Here’s
my take on the rest of the show: FALSE PROPHET — Show stopper. Strong
vocals, powerful delivery, menacing/pounding music. Bob crouching low.
This gets better every night. It riles up the crowd… now we have a show!
This has been one of the highlights of all the shows… even the first one
when I was pushed from behind by a fan who did not want me to stand and
dance. WHEN I PAINT MY MASTERPIECE — very nice. BLACK RIDER — Eerie,
dark, great atmosphere. I’LL BE YOUR BABY TONIGHT — Rockin’, but not
quite as good as the Beacon on Sunday MY OWN VERSION OF YOU — I enjoy
the way this arrangement builds in intensity… ‘Show me your ribs…
I’ll stick in the knife - I’m gonna jump start my creation to life’
TO BE ALONE WITH YOU — Good, but not quite as good as the Beacon on
Sunday EARLY ROMAN KINGS — I’m still not digging this version. But I
still love to hear it… ‘I ain’t dead yet… my bell still rings’.
KEY WEST (PHILOSOPHER PIRATE) — Another highlight of all the shows as
Bob once again sang/recited beautifully. I did not look at the stage for
this again tonight… I just bowed my head and absorbed it. Simply
astounding. The Band has right touch and Donnie is wonderful on the
accordion. GOTTA SERVE SOMEBODY — Spiritual rock ‘n roll. This is my
church. Bob is my shepherd. The rest is in the makers’ hand. I’VE MADE
UP MY MIND TO GIVE MYSELF TO YOU — Another highlight tonight. Sung with
the same reverence as KEY WEST. MELANCHOLY MOOD — Short and sweet. But I
still want CROSSING THE RUBICON in this slot. I know I’m being greedy,
but I will bitch and moan until I hear him sing that song in concert.
MOTHER OF MUSES — Nymphs and generals. Bob is traveling light, slow
coming home. Beautiful. For my girlfriend, this song conjured up memories
of her late dad, on this the 10th anniversary of his passing. She lost it
and became a torrent of tears. GOODBYE JIMMY REED — This pumps up the
crowd one last time, pumps me up! The Band cooks on this, Bob lashes the
keys, the whole house is up and dancing. This song is growing in the
coveted penultimate spot on the setlist. EVERY GRAIN OF SAND —
Exquisite. Bob singing like he never sang before. Indeed it is closer and
closer to the hour of my/his/our confession. A beautiful ending
overshadows an ugly start.
See this tour if you can. The ROUGH AND ROWDY WAYS material was
practically written for his fans and Bob sings them like he is singing
them TO us.
It was nice to see some Bobcats outside the Theatre… spoke to Greenpoint
Phil (with his UK accent), spoke to Beacon bar Mike.. don’t mistake my
girlfriend for my wife next time… neither of them appreciate it ;} A
passing hello to Mangala.
See you tomorrow.
Review by John Harrity
"There's only two theaters, man… that are set up pretty groovy all
around for music and for smooth stage changes, good lighting and all that
– the Fillmore and The Capitol Theatre.” -- Jerry Garcia 2017
Port Chester is looking on this Fall evening, like a down-and-out town on
the way back. Lots of humble dwellings and ragged store fronts leading
down Westchester Ave. The Capitol is looking a little dingy
itself, Next is the train station and a minute further down the street,
new construction, big stores and pricy condos.
Big unmarked buses on the side streets. One is a tandem, two-bus
vehicle, a mini Snow Piercer. The other single unit is parked next to
the theater door. Bob’s ride, no doubt.
My wife and I eat some Mexican food along with giant margaritas at the
restaurant next door to the Capitol, and watch other grey-heads come out
of the cold until the doors open. The audience will be a nice mix of
ages, young people getting hip to the Nobel Prize winner’s art, and us
old-timers still coming based on reverence and habit.
Most of the audience probably does not know about the theater’s
legendary role in rock history. After years of stunning performance,
concerts went silent for a while, until the venue was re-opened for music
in 2012. First act on the bill for the rebirth – Bob Dylan. And
here he comes now.
It’s a stark stage, no embellishments and low light. No spot on Bob,
partially hidden by a spinet piano behind which he works. His playing
seems actually in sync to the tunes, which has not always been the
case. It’s loose and a bit beer hall sounding, a cool sound.
My wife Cindy and I have seen Bob and the boys maybe 20 times. Not
experts on music or personnel, and too far from the stage to see, much
less interpret, subtle gestures and glances from the Maestro to his
mates. So this is a fairly stripped down report, based on how it hit us
in the back of the hall, in the ADA seats.
My God! The first song starts and we can see Bob singing. But we
cannot hear him at all. Bad mike, bad mix, bad – even alarming --
news if it is not corrected. “Watching the River Flow” is a
rocking, rollicking tune that gets the crowd going. But we hope Bob
will join us by the next song.
The levels are slowly adjusted over the next number, and Bob’s vocal is
strong in the mix by “I Contain Multitudes.” If the new album
contains major and minor works, “Multitudes” is clearly top of the
list, and is delivered accordingly. Worth the ticket price.
The set list is, of course, set – so I’m not doing
song-by-song. Highlights include “Multitudes,” “When I Paint My
Masterpiece,” “Gotta Serve Somebody,” and “Every Grain of Sand.”
Every song in the show hits the mark regardless. The band is tight,
churning like a machine, all tuned into Bob’s delivery. Some songs
get too slow. “Key West,” “Melancholy Mood” and “Mother of
Muses” really rattle the low end of the gears, but it’s all
Bob. And you know what they say,”It’s all good.”
“Goodbye Jimmy Reed” gets the crowd on its feet just in time for band
introductions and “Every Grain of Sand,” a profound meditation that
still manages to rock. Then, they’re away.
Bob’s voice was strong and tuneful. My ears are shot, but my wife
says she understood every word. He came out from behind the piano for
two numbers, but seemed hunched and frail, maybe in pain.
All in all, a great night for us and the Capitol, and hopefully for Bob
and his excellent band.
I’ll add -- if you’re on the bubble about going to a show – get
there. Personally, we go to honor the greatest poet/musician of our
time. Would you go to see Charles Dickens if you were alive during his
extended period of public readings? Of course. And you’d be lucky
to have gone, once or a hundred times. It’s all good.
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