Bob Dylan in concert in Ontario

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No press credentials were issued for the Bob Dylan-John Mellencamp concert Thursday at Citizens Business Bank Arena, preventing our music writer and a photographer from attending, but as a fan I bought a ticket on my own dime and, from my seat in the third row, did the best I could with a digital camera (motion made most of my photos blurry, I’m afraid).

Dylan alternated between guitar and organ. Other band members seen in these photos are, from left, bassist Tony Garnier, guitarist Charlie Sexton and drummer George Recile. Out of camera view were rhythm guitarist Stu Kimball and multi-instrumentalist Donnie Herron, who played banjo, mandolin and pedal and lap steel.

Mellencamp had a similarly eclectic band, which included a violinist and an accordionist. He strode around the stage, which sometimes, such as at right, put him within about 20 feet of me.

Look for more about the concert in Sunday’s column. Click below for Dylan’s set list, taken from the excellent Bob Links website. That’s where you can see Dylan’s 2010 itinerary, which so far has ranged from Tokyo, Japan to Sturgis, South Dakota.

1. Rainy Day Women No. 12 and 35

2. Love Minus Zero/No Limit

3. Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again

4. Just Like a Woman

5. Rollin’ and Tumblin’

6. Tangled Up in Blue

7. High Water (for Charley Patton)

8. Love Sick

9. Highway 61 Revisited

10. Workingman’s Blues No. 2

11. Thunder on the Mountain

12. Ballad of a Thin Man

(encore)

13. Like a Rolling Stone

14. All Along the Watchtower

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  • Bob Terry

    DA, I wasn’t there Thursday, but have seen both before…Dylan mumbling and Cougar…I mean Mellencamp…all of 5’8″ and his violinist “super hot” from what I remember.

  • http://montaguestreetjournal.com/ 1ifbyrain2ifbytrain

    I found this article via expectingrain.com. Thanks for the notice and photos, I look forward to Sunday’s column.

    I’ve sometimes felt that in the interest of unbiased reporting reviewers of any ticketed event should have to obtain their own tickets. Fans know that the ticket buying process can be frustrating, arduous, even memorable and is certainly part of the experience and worthy of reporting.

    While Ontario was all reserved seating, Bob Dylan has had many shows with SRO/General Admission sections in front of the stage and fans know the agony of lining up for hours and hours outside a venue and then standing near the stage for a couple of hours more once inside. Worth it in the end? Yes!

  • cathleeny

    My husband and I were also at the Thursday night Dylan/Mellancamp Ontario concert. We were sitting in the third row as well. Both bands dished up and served a great night of entertainment. We left feeling completely satisfied.

    I have seen Dylan several times before and have always been pleased. This was the first time I have seen Mellencamp and my impression was that he didn’t know his audience, after all he wasn’t the headliner here. His music was great. I think it’s more of a formatting issue. A reshuffling of the set list, having the crescendo be in the middle of the set rather than at the end. Just a thought.

    The music was wonderful. I just wish row 2 had behaved better. They were distracting. Either they don’t get out much or they haven’t matured much in the last several decades. I wonder if they even remember the concert? Too bad because it was good.

  • Theresa Hanley

    David, I enjoyed your review. My daughter (26) and I were at the concert on Thursday night also. This is the third time we’ve seen Dylan in about 4 years and we thought this was the best of the three.

    I had heard that he no longer plays the guitar because of arthritis so we were thrilled when he actually faced the audience and picked up the guitar. I agree with you — one must go to a Dylan concert with no expectations and just enjoy the moment.

    Neither of us had seen Mellencamp before — but as a fellow Hoosier, I thought he was a lot of fun as well. And yes, as Friday was a work day, the short drive home was great too.

  • Lisa English

    Mr. Allen,

    Your review was sooooooo right on. With Dylan you just have to “roll with it.” I suppose just being in the same room as him, with folks that appreciate what once was, and can never be again, is a great way to spend an evening.

  • Doug Evans

    I have two Bob Dylan memories, neither of which, sadly, involve seeing him in person:

    I remember a Robert Hilburn LA Times article from the 80′s reviewing a Bob Dylan concert in Israel, Dylan’s first appearance in that country. Apparently he was going through a phase in which he wouldn’t play his old stuff in concert, and he held true to that even in in Israel, where no one had seen him live before. Hilburn was arguing that Dylan should have put aside his no-oldies rule for the occasion. Sounds like Dylan has come around on that rule. Maybe his creative resurgence of the last 20 years has helped him feel less insecure about his legacy.

    And I remember his infamous 1991 Grammy Awards performance in which he mumbled his way through “Masters of War,” “mumbled” being a good or bad thing, depending on where you stand on Dylan. I watched that in a dorm lobby in college with a bunch of friends who couldn’t quite figure out what he was doing.

    As for me: I’ve always thought he was an artist I would really get into if I took the time (and money) to do so. If he comes back to Ontario, I’ll make it a point to check him out… sounds like a nice, close — both in terms of close to the stage and close to my house — venue with, from what you say, plenty of seats available!

    [Bob: "Waitasec...I've gotta go to Ontario a second time to get Doug Evans' dough? Pff. Tough crowd." Seriously, though, regarding your two comments: Dylan is definitely feeling freer these days, I think because his new, younger audience isn't as hung up on his past as his old one was; and he's said that he had the flu and a high fever at the '91 Grammys but felt he had to go on anyway...which in retrospect may not have been such a good idea. -- DA]

  • rp

    DA, I’m impressed! A third row seat for a dime!

    [More than a thousand dimes, to be more precise. -- DA]

  • judi

    More Dylan news: http://music.msn.com/music/article.aspx?news=587158&GT1=28102

    Or in my case (a non-fan) too much Dylan news. (Sorry, David but if I want to hear whining, I’ve got kids…)

    [Sigh. -- DA]

  • Mariah Enos

    Hey, love it. By any chance do you have any more pics of Bob for this show? This show was really special to me. I had front row. E-mail me or something if you have the time, thanks.

    [I used the only ones that weren't blurred with motion. Front row, that's cool. -- DA]