Bob Dylan played at Mountain Park in Holyoke Friday night, the first of two area concert this weekend.
There was no prancing, no light show; just a man, his piano, and his band. Dylan’s most strenuous move was the lap he took as a sort of victory walk off the stage at the end of every song.
What his performance lacked in flair it made up for in, well, Dylanisms. True to reputation, the ramblin’ man mumbled quite a bit and took the liberty of pulling songs off their beat altogether, though still weaving them into poems. Having performed for fifty years, it’s the kind of thing you expect.
Dylan’s vocal styling has taken a turn to the scratchier side, channeling the cookie monster into his mutterings a la` Tom Waits. This made understanding him a little difficult, however knowing the lyrics proved no problem to fans in the audience.
The band seemed mostly at home doing songs with a more blusey vibe, pulling out the stops to rock with songs like Thunder On The Mountain.
The two hour set included hits like Highway 61 Revisited, Shelter From The Storm, and The Ballad Of A Thin Man. Dylan addressed the crowd once, before closing the regular set with All Along The Watch Tower, saying “Let’s get high, smoke your bowl…” before introducing the band members. The heat swept the crowd here and there, but it didn’t appear there were major busts on those heeding the performer’s advice.
He returned for an encore of Blowin In The Wind.
Dylan plays at the Mohegan Sun Arena Saturday night. Tickets are still available through ticketmaster.com for $49.50.
Here is the set list from the Mountain Park performance:
1. Watching The River Flow
2. Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right
3. Things Have Changed
4. Tangled Up In Blue
5. The Levee’s Gonna Break
6. Make You Feel My Love
7. Honest With Me
8. Every Grain Of Sand
9. High Water (For Charley Patton)
10. Desolation Row
11. Highway 61 Revisited
12. Shelter From The Storm
13. Thunder On The Mountain
14. Ballad Of A Thin Man
15. Like A Rolling Stone
16. All Along The Watchtower
17. Blowin’ In The Wind
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