Mark Knopfler and Bob Dylan in Innsbruck, 8th November 2011 seen by a sort of a researcher and a music junkie.
So, here I am, thinking a lot, still drowning in emotions.
I had to eat a lot of chocolate, drink a lot of coffee and force myself to get up. The 50 E-mails I received in 30 hours of being off-line also helped a lot. After all, it’ s true: I have to earn the money for rock concerts and answering to that mails or reacting accordingly is one of the necessary steps in order to reconnect with reality!
Introduction to the humble user posting her opinion in the following lines:
Mark Knopfler is one of my fav guitar player and I love him as a guitar player. That was my first time I saw him. I know almost all of his songs as solo career and Dire Straits star but I am not the 200% expert
I love Bob, period. Even though I know I miss the necessary culture to understand him fully, I just love him. That was my 14th gig.
I was in the VIPs places, so I saw everything, except for small details, and enjoyed a high quality sound. I only missed Bob’s facial expressions and eyes a lot (to explain this: I was 12 times out of 13 always in the first row + I fancy blue eyes…) and I could not appreciate Mark’s fingers on the strings (this fascinates me as well). Nevertheless it was like listening to an album with a professional stereo!!! Mark’s and Charlie’s hands sliding on the guitar neck had to suffice!)
I travelled by train. At the main station I picked up one of the free newspapers you usually find there, noticing a big face on the cover. I was sure it had to be Bob. Imagine my disappointment when I saw a huge Berlusconi’s face instead making its display on the main page of the free issue of the Tiroler Tageszeitung. I got to the Olympiahalle around three PM. The buses had arrived a few minutes ago, but I had no luck. Still, I immediately changed my facial expression into a girlish smile and all my emotions kicked in in spades. I spent the previous evening checking out the live set list on the Expecting Rain forum and listening to I want you, Tunnel of Love(DS), Learning to fly (Tom Petty), Slow Train coming (the latter being a dangerous choice, knowing I had to go by train and being aware that I would not have appreciated a slow train to the Tyrolean capital:-D). My best fantasies of Prince Charming could not accompany me into Morpheus’s arms, no way. And Prince Charming was suddenly wearing Texan boots, a cowboy hat, a black leather jacket and played guitar as only a God could. 🙂
Deciding not to cause troubles in the backstage (upsetting Bob and Mark is not the way I want to be remembered), I had a stroll around the place. Who knows, maybe I could have gotten an opportunity to get my Infidels cover signed, maybe I could have found some old acquaintances to talk with or to organise the stage-rush… with our best greetings to the security…
I made acquaintance with a nice couple from Graz I immediately recognized as Gleichgesinnte, as sharing the same wishes and tasks I had 🙂 We had a coffee at the Sport bar, heard some chords and riffs from what I believe was Mark’s soundcheck, made a security guy nervous with our smiles, our stares and my childish attempt to have a look behind certain glass doors…
After trying for half an hour to get to the stage and finding closed doors (be glad I did not turn on any alarm! ) or – worse – security guys explaining me where my place was and refusing any kind of corruption 😀 , I decided to enjoy the advantages of my VIP place. I did not even try to get to the stage for Bob because in the time I had to spend climbing down I would have been too far away already.
Mark opened with my fav song of his solo career, What it is, so I was already pleased! Unfortunately he played only Brothers in arms from DS then closed with So far away. Dreams are dreams and I dreamt of MANY DS songs 😉 My emotions were already out and I appreciate the calm seat neighbours for not throwing me down!
He is awesome, there is nothing more to say. He is perfection! His band is great as well! No wrong note. He is calm and passionate at the same time when playing. Great BiA and Sailing to Philadephia, awesome.
Then HE came.
Mark played for 4 songs and added a great edge. My notebook says: “THC Mark great, great arrangement” and “Mississippi, Mark and Charlie set up an awesome guitar dialogue”.
Bob was awesome. Maybe he did not sing that good in Germany, but yesterday he was really great and expressive. One could hear the lyrics quite clear. Of course we all know his voice is not this one anymore http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUWowN5XlJgl …but boys, he still has it! I also loved the way he seemed to enjoy the stage and the way he moved. (moving, dancing, living it! My last gigs were quite awful: Bob stuck by the keyboard and almost not moving )
He took my breath away during Shooting star: the way he sang and moved. I also appreciated the way Mark’s guitar and Bob’s harp “made love” ( which is also one of the reasons I love Infidels!!!)
I also marked Honest with me as a great version. My faithful yet full of sweat notebook reports: “Bob guitar. Great riff”.
Visions of Johanna: wow. Sung and played in a way I never heard. Wow. TUIB: “Bob dances”. Summer days: good arrangement. Please note that I heard the whole Love and Theft album live more than anything else…so my appreciation comes from the fact that they really had chemistry, the played with passion and tried something “new” (to define “new”: I did not see Bob since 2008!). Charlie Sexton: another wonderful surprise. I always remembered him as quite tense. Yesterday he was great and I noticed a great feeling with Bob!!!
(yes, I missed Bob’s gig for a while, I know!)
I made acquaintance with some nice Austrian fans before, during and after the show and that was a nice plus for the day.
The ones who were sitting near me were very patient, considering that I danced (really danced) the whole concert and I called out BOOOOOOOOB after almost any song. The one on my right even encouraged me to express myself further and I answered: “If I really shout out loud Bob, I love you, I can forget being the researcher and start being the patient!”.
If anybody of those acquaintances reads this: I hope you appreciate my thanks for the company and my fondest greetings!
The return train to Salzburg (or Linz-Vienna) at 1:14 was full with “concert survivors”. We had to wake up everybody in order to sit (we were very sorry!). Once again, I enjoyed the moment: there were some very young fans, full of enthusiasm, talking about Bob, Tom Petty, The Boss, Dire Straits….Oh, I wish I had such kids! Moreover, our devastated faces at 1 or 3 in the morning on the train in our outfits (and sweat! Boy, it was HOT!) made a very rock ‘n roll picture!!! Another tidbit I am glad to put in my biography!
Of course this could not seem the right tour to follow date after date because it could get repetitive, and of course my fantasy about them playing Infidels after a Tunnel of Love with Bob on organ intro stayed a fantasy..but….it depends. I was so glad to be there and If I had time and money I would have followed him/them. This night I dreamt about London. So…draw your conclusions!
Reflections (for the press reviews and some “allowed” pictures, just skip this part and have a look below!)
My bank accounts are clear, my life is everything but dreamy and my conscience is aware of the fact that I did a lot of wrong choices and that I am paying for them. But yesterday I felt so alive, as only music always made me. Music always made me feel better. I realised that I did made a lot of mistakes, but spending time for live gigs was never one of those, no way. I am afraid that Bob is going to quit soon (please, correct me ANY TIME!). Now I am able to tell my nieces I saw him 14 times. Hell, I even flirted with him in Strasbourg ( I checked out, it was Strasbourg 2002!). I am able to tell them I am full of vibrations any time I hear a good riff or solo and that I have been in the same hall as a guy who made alone 50% of the best solos and riffs on this earth. I am able to tell them I did my small deed to support friends starting their serious musical career.
My e-mail account screams I should start again with economic crisis and historical epidemiology…you know, the fun stuff. Now it is the time. I just must not forget that I can be everything but alone as long as I can bring my memories with me and play my music. I forgot it quite often. The couple from Graz also remembered me that I have an artistic side inside of me. They did it by showing me some of their creations. I was not exactly educated to boost my artistic side, because my family knows how hard it is to earn money even by dirt working and always suggested to keep it as a nice spare time occupation. They are right, but my creativity should encourage me to find the right place for “the other side”. I am plenty of ideas! 😉 (My PhD dissertation features quotes from With God on our side and Brothers in Arms, hoping that the supervisor and the dean do not force me to remove them!)
The title quotes a verse from “I want you” and the title of a DS song. It was just meant as a tribute and I hope it does not sound as disrespectful, since I “shaped” the words till giving them a quite subjective meaning, which has nothing to do with the original lyrics. This is especially true for His Bobness, whose lyrics are something above my writing standards, even in Italian, and whose stanza and line refer to a quite different situation. I was listening to the songs and the idea simply took form.
Check out the official websites and the on-line fan communities of Mr. Dylan and Mr. Knopfler. I am only a passionate but inadequate admirer!
The last ones are my favourite resources I use to understand more of Bob’s world.
The “press” about the concert: best articles in my opinion!
http://www.salzburg.com/online/nachrichten/kultur/Dylan-und-Knopfler-begeistern-in-Innsbruck.html?article=eGMmOI8Vf8VW9NV6CQ7kh8DBhvOHAJnBVWtTab6&img=&text=&mode= from the Salzburger Nachrichten ( a well known Austrian newspaper based in Salzburg which often features interesting things about Bob. There has to be a fan! 🙂 ). Appreciates both, very positive comments. Mark the “conservative” with mastery and Bob the “revolutionary”.
http://diepresse.com/home/kultur/popco/707266/Auf-der-Strasse_Bob-Dylan-in-Innsbruck?_vl_backlink=/home/kultur/popco/index.do from Die Presse, along with Der Standard the most important (also internationally) Austrian newspaper. More Bob-centred: “The best and wildest band”. Sure it was like that on Tuesday!
http://www.tt.com/csp/cms/sites/tt/Freizeit/3741938-2/die-zeiten-haben-sich-ge%C3%A4ndert.csp from the Tyrolean newspaper Tiroler Tageszeitung, a lively report ( or should I say Bericht? 🙂 ) of the evening.
All of us agree: that was a GREAT evening!