Bob Dylan Diary : 1995.
'World Gone Wrong' is nominated for a Grammy in the Traditional
Folk Album category.
According to the Edna Gundersen interview in USA Today on May 5,
Dylan spends three weeks in January writing new songs.
Release of Highway 61 Interactive CD-ROM.
The so called Emmett Grogan acetates finally come into circulation.
They were given to Emmett Grogan by Dylan sometime in late 1965 or 1966 and
contain acetates from the recording sessions of 'Another Side' and 'Highway
61 Revisited' as well as one track from the 1964 Newport Festival.
World Gone Wrong gets a Grammy as best Traditional Folk Album!
For the second time since he resumed regular touring in 1974, Dylan
has to cancel a show due to illness, in this case influenza.
Still week from his illness Dylan performs the first of no less than
116 concerts in 1996. Shortly before the concert he decides to skip his guitar
for the evening and perform the entire set with hand held mike and harmonica.
This pattern remains during most of the Spring and Summer shows, with the
first two electric and the first two acoustic songs minus guitar. The show
starts with Crash On The Levee (Down In The Flood), which is to become a
regular opener. First known live version of this song, not counting the guest
appearance at The Band's New Year's Concert 1971.
'Unbelievable' is included in the set for the first time since
November 6, 1992 in Gainesville, Florida. Dylan plays harmonica on all songs
except the last.
"A Primitive's Portfolio", an interview by Malcolm Jones Jr.
conducted in early March, is published by Newsweek.
Elvis Costello is the support act playing an all acoustic solo set,
trying out a number of new songs. This is the first of five opening shows,
the other being the Brixton concerts and the concert in Dublin.
Release of the Doc Pumus album 'Till The Night Is Gone' which
includes 'Boogie Woogie Country Girl' with Bob Dylan backed by his regular
touring band. The track was recorded in New Orleans in May 1994.
At the second of three shows at The Brixton Academy in London,
Dylan finally starts varying the set a bit more, leaving out both 'Tangled Up In
Blue' (for the first time since October 8, 1993 in Sacramento, California in a
full length concert) and 'Maggie's Farm' (for the first time since November 9,
1994 in Nashville, Tennessee). Elvis Costello joins Dylan for a great version of
'I Shall Be Released' during the encores, playing guitar and sharing vocals.
Elvis Costello again joins Dylan during 'I Shall Be Released' and
both are then joined by Chrissie Hynde and Carole King on back-up vocals on
'Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35'.
The European tour ends in Dublin with a two hour show including
guests Elvis Costello, Van Morrison, and Carole King during the encores. After
the show Dylan hugs Carole King so hard that she falls off the stage and breaks
'MTV Unplugged' is released in Europe.
Dylan and Costello are filmed in a Dublin street doing 'I Shall
Be Released' presumably for some TV program.
'MTV Unplugged' is released in USA.
Release of 'MTV Unplugged' commercial video.
"Dylan on Dylan, Unplugged and the birth of a song" is published in
USA Today. Another Edna Gundersen interview, probably conducted in late April.
The Spring tour starts in San Diego, California. The set includes
'Seeing The Real You At Last', last played in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada on
August 27, 1992.
At the show in McCallum Theater in Palm Desert, California, 'Obviously
Five Believers' finally makes its live debut. Also included is a slow version of
'Never Gonna Be The Same Again', which has only been tried once before, on 21st
February, 1986 in Melbourne.
Pledging My Time is played again for the first time since September
9, 1990 in Austin, Texas.
Sheryl Crow, who has been opening for Dylan at the LA shows, joins
him for yet another duet version of 'I Shall Be Released'.
Dylan plays the first of five concerts as opening act "a very special
guest", for the Grateful Dead.
In great contrast to the huge outdoors concerts with The Grateful
Dead, Dylan plays two shows in the 800 all-standing Theater of The Living Arts
in Philadelphia. The first night is particularly intense and ranks as one of the best
concerts during the Never-Ending Tour. An acoustic 'Visions Of Johanna' is one
of the highlights. This song has not been in the set since Minneapolis, Minnesota,
September 3, 1992. 'Tangled Up In Blue' returns to the set, but now in acoustic
version! At this concert it is the acoustic encore. It will be played regularly in the
acoustic set during the remainder of the year. The second show opens with 'Drifter's
Escape', which ends up being a fairly common alternative to 'Down In The Flood' as
opener. Drifter's Escape was last played November 12, 1992 in Clearwater, Florida.
At the last show of the spring tour in Washington DC, Jerry Garcia
joins the band playing guitar on the encores.
As usual Dylan plays the summer festival circuit mixed with a number
of regular shows, this time starting in Oslo, Norway.
Martin Banks from the Birmingham Evening Mail manages to get an
ad-hoc interview in the hospitality tent after the Phoenix Festival show.
Dylan opens for The Rolling Stones in Montpellier, France, playing
one of his shortest sets ever, just 9 songs and no encores. Later Dylan joins The
Rolling Stones on, you guessed it, 'Like A Rolling Stone'. The whole thing was
recorded and filmed by The Rolling Stones for a possible later single and video,
but as could be expected, Dylan's contribution was less than impressive, so in
the end they had to use another live version for their fall release of the 'Stripped'
album and the accompanying CD single.
The Summer tour ends with a show in Nyon, Switzerland.
Jerry Garcia dies of a heart-attack at a California drug rehabilitation
center, Serenity Drug Treatment Center in Marin Co., California.
The Bob Dylan press statement on Jerry Garcia is issued: "There's
no way to measure his greatness or magnitude as a person or as a player. I don't
think any eulogizing will do him justice. He was that great, much more than a
superb musician, with an uncanny ear and dexterity. He's the very spirit person-
ified of whatever is Muddy River country at its core and screams up into the
spheres. He really had no equal. To me he wasn't only a musician and friend, he
was more like a big brother who taught and showed me more than he'll ever know.
There's a lot of spaces and advances between The Carter Family, Buddy Holly and,
say, Ornette Coleman, a lot of universes, but he filled them all without being a
member of any school. His playing was moody, awesome, sophisticated, hypnotic
and subtle. There's no way to convey the loss. It just digs down really deep."
Dylan attends the Jerry Garcia funeral service at the St. Stephen
church in Belvedere, California.
At the concert that opened the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in
Cleveland, Dylan and the band plays a five song set. Bruce Springsteen is the
main attraction during this event and duets with most artists as well as playing
his own set with the E-Street band. Dylan and Springsteen sing 'Forever Young'
as the last song in Dylan's set, which also includes a powerful 'Seeing The Real
You At Last'.
The Fall Classics Tour (yes, the tours have names again!)
starts with a kind of public rehearsal at a small club in Fort Lauderdale,
Florida called 'The Edge'. The 14-song set contains no less than 8 covers.
Most intriguing is the fact that the acoustic set includes no Dylan song.
At the show at Lee Civic Center in Fort Myers, Florida,
Bob signs about a dozen autographs for people who climb on-stage between the
encore numbers. He even signs a guitar that someone had brought to the show.
The Sun Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale publishes an interview
by journalist John Dolen called "A Midnight Chat with Bob Dylan". The interview
takes place at Dylan's hotel in Fort Lauderdale after a band rehearsal. At the
show in Sunrise Music Center, Alison Krauss, who is the opening act, joins Bob
on-stage and plays fiddle on One More Night, which makes its live debut with
vocals by Dylan.
Dickey Betts joins Dylan on-stage at the show in Tampa,
Florida, playing guitar in the second electric sets and on the electric encores.
He also sings his own 'Ramblin' Man' as the first encore.
Sheryl Crow returns to play accordion on 5 songs as well as
sing back-up on Alabama Getaway at the show in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The enhanced CD version ("CD+" in Sonyspeak) of 'Greatest
Hits Volume 3' is finally released. Unfortunately it is impossible to access it
on most computers, even though the 2-disc set is accompanied by a third disc
only containing drivers for various CD-ROM reading devices. The music is the
same as on the regular music CD release and in addition there is a lot of lyrics
and two videos, one is 'Tangled Up In Blue' from 'Renaldo & Clara' and one
is the promo video for 'Jokerman'.
The shows in Austin, Texas see a number of guests: On the
first night Charlie Sexton on electric guitar in the second electric set and the
last encore, and Ian Moore also playing electric guitar on the electric encores.
The second night Ian Moore returns and again plays electric guitar on the electric
encores. Doug Sahm plays electric guitar in the second electric set and the last
encore and sings on 'Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues'.
Yet another duet takes place in the Symphony Hall in Phoenix,
Arizona, when Stevie Nicks joins Dylan on 'I Shall Be Released' (what else?).
The Frank Sinatra 80th Birthday Tribute is recorded at the
Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. Dylan intends to play 'That's Life'
but instead, at Sinatra's request, he performs a beautiful version of 'Restless
Farewell' backed by the touring band and a string quartet. The only other live
version of this song is from the 1964 Canadian TV programme 'Quest'. At the
post-show party at Sinatra's home only four musical guests are invited. Eydie
Gorme, Steve Lawrence, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen.
Dylan attends the Bruce Springsteen solo acoustic concert at
Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles, California.
Contrary to his habit of ending the touring after Thanksgiving,
Dylan plays 10 shows in December with Patti Smith as opening act. The tour is
billed as "Paradise Lost Tour". Although the tour with Patti Smith was set up after a
request from Dylan, it takes three shows before they meet, but during the last seven
shows the acoustic set is augmented by a duet with Patti Smith on 'Dark Eyes'.
Music critic, journalist and biographer Robert Shelton dies after a
severe stroke a week earlier in his home in Brighton, England. Robert Shelton wrote
the influential New York Times review of Dylan's performance (opening act for The
Greenbriar Boys) at Gerde's Folk City in Greenwich Village on September 29, 1961.
In 1986 he published his biography 'No Direction Home: The Life and Music Of
Former band-leader on The Never-Ending Tour (1988, 1989 and
most of 1990) G.E. Smith joins Dylan on stage at The Beacon Theatre, New York
for the last encore, as always on this tour, 'Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35'.