Bob Dylan – Seattle WA: October 17 2014


Well it was Bob Dylan tonight at the Paramount Theater in Seattle. This was the opening night of his North American tour and the first of three nights in Seattle.

I wasn’t sure what to expect tonight with respect to the performance, audience or sound. I was told from a friend a couple years ago who had seen Dylan that if you are a true Bob Dylan fan, don’t go and see him live as you will be very disappointed in the music, so I was a bit apprehensive. I have always liked Bob Dylan’s music but I guess I don’t really consider myself a huge fan so I thought I would risk it.

There were a few things I didn’t like about the show. First and foremost, and as always with the Paramount in Seattle, they are extremely belligerent when it comes to taking photographs. The staff was out in force even before the show started telling folks who were taking selfies to put their cameras away. Again, they say it’s because of the band’s preference, but I just don’t know. Anyway, the stage was so softly lit that I could’t get too many good shots anyway. The four above are the best of what I got and I am a bit embarrassed to show them other than I had to have at least a few to remember the show. One of the other strange things about the show was Bob Dylan’s lack of personal contact with the audience. It was strange not to hear the band great the audience, or introduce his band, or even acknowledge that “it’s great to be here in Seattle”. He just came out, played his music, took a 15 minute intermission came back for about 40 minutes, played one encore and was gone…I don’t know, maybe that’s just his style.

Regarding the performance, he sounded good…he sounded like Bob Dylan with that heavy, gravely voice and his ever incoherent vocalizations where you can only understand one of every five words, but hey…that it one of the things that makes him so unique and iconic. He has a very soulful voice with a great deal of emotion in his music. Although the set list contained lots of the classics, they were arranged very differently than what myself and I think many in the audience expected. The older couple sitting next to me actually got up and left after his performance of It’s All Over No, Baby Blue as they could did not recognize it at all and didn’t want to hear anymore songs performed not the way the remembered them…too bad because even though the arrangements to most of the songs were different, they seemed fresh and at least half the audience were younger and seemed to very much enjoy the bluesy, rock folk mix.

All in all, it was a pretty good show. I am happy I was finally able to see him live and I wasn’t disappointed.

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