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Out in the Moonlight, not alone

 

BY CHRIS COOPER

 

It has finally arrived. Never thought it would, I mean everything seemed to be so distant this time. For me the main reason for this apparent distance was the late arrival of tickets. Now before we get the wrong Idea I am in no way knocking J Baldwin here. I am aware a little, of the hassle that he had to go through to get us all seated at our shows each night. But whilst I know it isn’t his fault the delay had let me think things were still a long way off. Then they arrived. You look at them and you realize that really it is almost THAT time
again. SHOWTIME..

I don’t know about you but I have been at this nonsense a long time now. First time I did a run of shows was ’78. And since then it has happened often. And there are a million memories between then and now. Back then I though music was so important to us all. Accuse me of being naïve if you like but I was waiting for it to change my life, and the worlds too. Well it sure has changed mine anyway. Back in ’78 Dizzy and I spent a night on a cold pavement in Birmingham cueing for those elusive tickets. Since then I have done similar stuff year after year. Somewhere down the line Dizzy grew up and left this crazy nonsense behind. But her crazy husband has never been able to kick the habit. It is to her eternal credit and equally the cause of much heartache I am sure, that she has let me keep this strange hobby going, and in fact always supported me in it. But 78 was 24 years ago. The kids have grown and gone but still we plod on. Do you ask yourself why sometimes? I sure do.

As I am sitting here I am playing a super recording of Berlin 11 April show. Bob sounds quite stately here, he sings most of the songs in his slow “elder statesmen” voice. It suits this stuff well. The old bugger is wearing pretty good but you have to be blind to not see the cracks these days. But has he changed the world? Has he saved any lives ? Unlikely. He is what he was then I guess, a poet and a musician and little more. But it has been a slow
and torturous road from there to here. I never thought I would be here.

How many shows you going to?
You know I was booking every gig before I even considered it. Was it routine or need?
Nowadays the tickets are easier to get and I don’t have to pawn the cat to pay for them. But I have a confession to make.

I know this will shock you so take a seat.

Comfortable? Are you prepared ? Steel yourself now…

I did consider……….. Missing a few!!!

Honest!

I cannot hide such a decision usually around “I can’t get away from work” or “It’s too far to get too”. Being the boss has it’s compensations, I can take the time pretty much as I want too. No the considerations are different to that.
It’s not just a case of “Do I have the Desire?”
It more a question of “Do I Have the energy?”
Well do ya? Punk? (Ooops wrong theme)
You see all those years ago I was alone in my venture, that is I knew few “Dylan people” and so went to the shows with Dizzy. Of course I was never alone there were always a few thousand other people there. But who was counting.

I remember Dylan playing Tambourine Man in 78 and feeling the rush of adrenalin in me mixing with crowds juices. A wonderful experience which I seem to find harder to rekindle now. Odd thing is now when I go to a show I DO know a lot of the people there, but we don’t seem to share that magic anymore.
Is it Bob’s fault or mine? I am not sure.
Many old friends have gone either from Dylan or my life or both but that does not really explain why I feel more alone at these things these days. Sometimes I find my self witnessing a ritual rather than being part of an event.
Hell this sounds depressing what?
It’s not meant to be. I have high hopes for these shows I intend to try to pay better attention an tell you all about them next time, because yes I am still doing them all. (Dizzy says she knew I always would)

So If Bob succeeds in rejuvenating me I’ll tell you.
An if he doesn’t then maybe next I will miss a show?

Maybe, someday…

Till Next Time.

Dylan 78

 
 
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