Bob Dylan and the Band – 1974 tour

Bob Dylan and the Band toured for two months at the beginning of 1974. I saw the January 6, 1974 afternoon show at the Spectrum in Philadelphia. The music from the tour has been well captured on the album Before the Flood which is basically a shorter version of the show. For instance the album has three solo acoustic songs while he actually did five. The album has eight songs by the Band while they really did 11.

The concert was outstanding. Dylan and the Band performed everything as loud rock – listen to t “Lay Lady Lay” and “It Ain’t Me Babe” which are very different than the original versions.

The Band was excellent. However, the audience just kept shouting for Dylan while they were on. They played a few obscure songs from their catalog – “When You Awake” and “Long Black Veil”.

Dylan and the Band played several songs from their new Planet Waves album. The Band played nothing from Moondog Matinee, released just a few months earlier.

Several shows were recorded but I doubt that we will ever get a Bootleg Series release of them. There are bootlegs of many of the shows, some of which are soundboards. I have read that Dyan wasn’t happy with the tour. I guess it didn’t have the elements of innovations and controversy that his 1966 tour did. This time, Dylan was the establishment.

Ben Fong-Torres wrote a book about the tour.

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