JUNE 27, 2004



1. Rainy Day Women #12 & 35

2. If You See Her, Say Hello

3. Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum

4. If Not For You

5. Drifter's Escspe

6. The Man In Me

7. Down Along The Cove

8. Mr. Tambourine Man

9. God Knows

10. Tangled Up In Blue

11. Not Dark Yet

12. Honest With Me

13. Forever Young

14. Summer Days

15. Don't Think Twice, It's All Right

16. Like A Rolling Stone

17. All Along The Watchtower

18. Highway 61 Revisited

Now that was some show, the one in Galway,
Bob's first concert in the western part of this
island. He has been to Belfast and Dublin numerous
time, he performed in Slane in 1984, which is
north of Dublin, played two shows in the south
east (Tramore 1993 and Kilkenny 2001), and he
had to cancel Millstreet twice (1997 and 2003).
So Galway's Pearse Stadium was packed when Bob
and his band walked onstage to perform quite a
memorable set during the seventh show of this
European tour.

The show featured six new additions (all among
the first ten songs), and five songs were repeated
for the first time on this tour. They also played
seven regulars, which appear more often, or even
every night. But not many would have cared to
notice this among this huge crowd I was standing
in, about a stage width away from the left set
of speakers. Most in the audience just came to
have a good time, which they obviously had, not
knowing that some of the greatest hits (and the
Irish love to do sing along to those) were among
the new additions.

In fact Bob chose to start his show with such a
crowd pleaser, "Rainy Day Women". As I knew this
is no regular opener, I figured that this would
be no regular set. Song number two confirmed this
for me, when we got to hear a fine "If You See Her,
Say Hello", (including "her eyes were blue, her
hair was too"). "Tweedle" was next, the first
repeat from the Belfast show the night before
(but in a different slot). [The next Belfast
repeat would be song number twelve.] The fourth
song was another surprise, "If Not For You",
which rocked harder than I ever heard it, great
drums here, and Bob closed it with harp.

"Drifter" rocked hard as usual, before Bob
pulled out a real surprise, a very nice
"The Man In Me", which also ended with harp.
It was the first appearance of this song since
October 2002. Things really started cooking
with "Down Along The Cove", which I had expected
as the opener. I had seen the first two versions
of this new arrangement in Frankfurt and in
Düsseldorf last fall, and even now, without Freddy,
this one is great to see live, extremely enjoyable
stuff. Stu is a very able guitar player, no doubt,
and he delivered a lot of goodies in Galway (if he
just would not stick his tongue to his upper lip
so much, looking like a first grader trying to
write his first abc).

The next song, "Mr Tambourine Man", was a breather
somehow, and it started and ended with Bob on harp.
I was expecting "H61" after this, but to my surprise
there was "God Knows", which was quite an intense
performance, and its grave warnings (God knows
there's gonna be no more water but fire next time ...
God knows it could snap apart right now just like
putting scissors to a string ... God knows you ain't
gonna be taking nothing with you when you go) were
delivered with the same conviction as the
encouragement which closed the song (God knows
there's a purpose, God knows there's a chance,
God knows you can rise above the darkest hour of
any circumstance). For me this gem was the peak
of the concert.

Then all of the sudden I see Larry with an acoustic
guitar, and we are into "Tangled", which was unlike
any other version I have seen or heard (and I have
seen and heard many, but then again, who hasn't?),
as Bob chose to sing (yes, sing) large parts of most
verses with an altered melody line. Quite interesting,
but hard to describe. It was not quite a "Towson
Tambourine" or a "New Orleans Hard Rain", but it
was refreshingly different.

Song number eleven was another surprise for me,
as I did not expect it at all (only one week after
its latest appearance). It was Bob's first
performance of "Not Dark Yet" on the Emerald Isle
(and besides "God Knows" the other lyrical peak of
the evening). This version was delivered with
care by its writer, and its last verse was even
preceded by some harp. It was only the second time
ever (the first one was in November 2000) that
"God Knows" and "Not Dark Yet" were performed in
one concert, and both times they were separated
by only one song in between.

Most regulars appeared after those first eleven
songs, and the crowd really enjoyed them, especially
"Like A Rolling Stone". I enjoyed them too, as I
knew what to expect, hard rocking versions of
"Honest" and "Summer Days", of "Rolling Stone"
and "Watchtower", as well as the new "Don't Think
Twice" with Stu on electric guitar. Yet I did not
expect a second encore, another hard rocking "H61",
as song number eighteen. A nice bonus.

Song number thirteen is another wild card on
this tour, and in Galway we got "Forever Young",
which unfortunately started with Bob's mike turned
off until ". climb on every rung", but it featured
another fine harp solo. All in all it was a great
song selection for this show in Galway, I would
say, and even though I had seen every song before
in concert, I have no reason at all to moan about
this set list. And the performance itself by
Doctor Zimmerman was pretty good as well. He
clearly enjoys what he is doing on stage,
and as long as he does, it's not dark YET.

concerts i've been to