Thursday, July 2, 2009

Willie Nelson & Bob Dylan Summerfest 2009

Willie Nelson, busted 3 years ago for pot and mushrooms, was performing at age 76 to a huge mixed-age crowd. Starting promptly at 7:30 he sped through song after song, seemingly challenging the band to keep up with him. With nary a word to the audience between songs he was like a musical parody of himself. Don't know if he was on auto pilot or just in the groove and playing through. For those of us in the higher rows, having bought "best available" seats, only to notice that the next section over was closed and totally empty 25 rows closer, my ears hurt from the higher pitches and my eyes failed to see much really. He was just a small figure on the stage and the huge projection screens weren't being used. We were told that Bob Dylan nixed them saying, "This is a live concert, not television." Have to wonder if he just didn't want anyone to see him close up. Or at all really as when he took the stage the lighting was dimmed and shadowy. Dylan's voice failed him but his band was tight and well dressed complete with hats. They played separate sets and we wondered if Willie wasn't making a poke at Bob in one of his songs. Couldn't understand the lyrics well enough to tell.

I had to wonder what happened to these two renegade guys that used to go to bat for the working class. Counting seats and looking around my quick math figured there was at least 1.5 million dollars in the seats, not counting t-shirt and souvenir sales. I was sadly disappointed. On a scale of Lynn I give it a 2 at best. Willie, Bob, what are you thinking? Not a word to the audience? No, really, I'd like to know. I wouldn't encourage anyone to go until the Marcus Amphitheater improves the sound system and uses the projections screens for those of us having still paid a generous sum but sitting in the peanut gallery.

On a need-to-know basis - Willie Nelson - Dead or Alive?

My sentiments exactly - Bob Dylan

Sorry dudes, you may be legends, but a show is a show.

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