Southampton, England

O2 Guildhall Southampton

October 30, 2015

[Graham Cole]

Review by Graham Cole

A lingering kiss …

What a joyous day this has been.  When Bob plays in the town you live in, as
is the case for Loraine and me tonight, going to the show is different, and it 
hasn't happened to us before.  No long drive along busy motorways to get to 
and from the concert, no getting home well after midnight, and then writing 
a review into the middle of the night whilst it is all still fresh in my mind, but in 
contrast, going to the show by local bus, still getting there early, and as a 
result enjoying the company of others happy to be there and keen to queue
to get a front row position, and then enjoying the show in a relaxed frame of 
mind, and even catching the bus home whilst the Beat the Street tour buses 
head for another joint.  

And now here I am, with a closing glass of Sainte Baume rosé as I write this, 
to the strains of a lovely She Belongs to Me which Sam has managed to record 
just three hours ago.

Right from early this morning, there are messages going to and fro on FaceBook 
and the general excitement that we shall be seeing Bob and the Boys again in 
the evening.  I could feel that excitement growing within, and little events 
adding to it along the way - the YouTube clips of opening the new and 
forthcoming Bootleg Series sets, a download of older more folky Dylan tunes, 

Our son Sam would be there too, maybe his seventh or eighth time around, 
and with Chez up from Plymouth, who hasn't seen Bob before.  And one of the 
loveliest things about queueing for a Bobshow is how easily you get talking to 
other folks there.  The joys of sharing our craziness, looking out for any little sign 
of Bob, rushing over to the tour buses in the hope of a fleeting glimpse, sharing 
Bobshow experiences, and simply meeting such wonderful people sharing this 
fabulous common interest.  Down from Scotland were Alex (Edinburgh 1966) 
and his son Tony, and Tony's two terrific daughters, 12 and 11 years of age 
and so wondrously enthusiastic about Him.  It was so good too to talk with 
Mark and his son George, from Worthing; thank you both - it was a real pleasure 
to meet you, and I really do hope we meet again somewhere down along the 
road.  And Paul, how good to see you again, I think two years on from our last 
show together.

So we were at the front of the queue and ready for the dash to the barrier 
when the doors opened at 6.30.  And thereby we had a barrier position, just 
ever so slightly to stage right and happy, happy, happy right at the front.  
Because I was never ever on the barrier, never in that precious front row with 
just a metre of guarded space between us and the stage, and Bob.  Second, 
third and fourth line yes, but never that coveted front row that occasionally 
Loraine has managed to squeeze her way through to.  This would be another 
great Bobnight.

I could just say there were twenty highlights, but no matter if I mention just a 
few.  Again, the beautiful juxtaposition of Long and Wasted Years with Autumn 
Leaves worked as well as at the RAH last week, but there were unexpected 
surprises for me too.  I loved Spirit on the Water, and Bob's phrasing on 
Duquesne Whistle, and Tangled Up In Blue was also every bit as good as last 
week.  For sure too the waltz-time Blowin' In the Wind gave me time to listen 
again to every classic line, so very powerful now, in 2015.  But in some ways 
my moment to take all this in was as Bob and the Band stood before us right 
at the close; there was no need for him to applaud the crowd as I understand 
he did on the RAH first night, Bob's body language said it all.  It was great to 
see these five musicians and their leader at the height of their creativity and 
we were privileged to have been there to see and hear them play.

The years of listening to, and enjoying Bob Dylan and his music, and seeing him 
in concert may have been long, but in no way wasted, and once again I find 
myself simply saying Thank you Bob and your Band for bringing such joy to us 
yet again and enriching our lives.  Right or wrong, we can't get along without 

Graham Cole


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