BOB DYLAN: The Legendary Broadcasts:1985 – 1993 (CD)

The Legendary Broadcasts:1985 - 1993 (CD)

Rare Live Recordings Of Dylan’s Classic Radio & Television Performances

This collection of live broadcast material begins with Bob Dylan’s three-song set from Live Aid, 13 July 1985. With a worldwide audience exceeding one billion, Dylan had the unenviable task of appearing as the last act on the bill before the final performance, a huge ensemble rendition of We Are the World.

This historic, if somewhat shambolic performance saw Dylan joined on stage by Stones guitarists Keith Richards and Ron Wood. Unfortunately, Dylan and co were forced to perform with the stage monitors positioned behind them and were therefore unable to hear themselves play. To make matters worse, just a few feet away, the entire ensemble was preparing for the finale talking, laughing, rehearsing, and at one point even gawping out from behind the curtain! All of which was both off-putting and disrespectful.

Having decided not to play a greatest hits set, Dylan began with Ballad of Hollis Brown, a song that tells the story of a South Dakota farmer who, weighed down by the desperation of poverty, kills his wife, children and then himself. The song provided a lead-in for Dylan to make a statement that some of the proceeds from Live Aid, One or two million, maybe, could go to help American farmers in danger of losing their farms to the banks. This controversial comment, which Bob Geldof called crass, stupid, and nationalistic, was nevertheless the catalyst for the first Farm Aid benefit concert which was held later the same year.

This first Farm Aid benefit concert, held in Champaign, Illinois, on 22 September 1985, attracted an audience of 80,000 people, and raised over $9 million in support of American family farmers in danger of losing their farms through mortgage debt. The annual concert, which continues to the present day, celebrates its 30th Anniversary in 2015. Since its inception in 1985, Farm Aid has raised more than $45 million to support programmes that help U.S. farmers thrive and expand.

Near the close of this fabulous star-studded all-day event, which featured more than 50 acts including The Beach Boys, Johnny Cash, Arlo Guthrie, Merle Haggard, Emmylou Harris, Don Henley, Waylon Jennings, Billy Joel, B. B. King, Carole King, Kris Kristofferson, John Mellencamp, Joni Mitchell, Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Bonnie Raitt, Lou Reed, Kenny Rogers, and Neil Young along with a host of others, Bob Dylan joined Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (who had just concluded their own breathtaking set) for six numbers. Regrettably, the first and sixth songs, Clean Cut Kid and That Lucky Old Sun, were omitted from TNNs broadcast. Nevertheless, we do have fine performances of Shake, Ill Remember You, Trust Yourself and the final song, an obligatory Maggies Farm.

Live Aid, July 1985

1 Ballad of Hollis Brown (4.39)

2 When the Ship Comes In (3.50)

3 Blowin in the Wind (5.12)

Farm Aid, September 1985

4 Shake (2:40)

5 Ill Remember You (4.13)

6 Trust Yourself (3.25)

7 Maggies Farm (3.57)

Chabad, August 1986

8 Thank God (2.21)

Byrds & Bob Dylan May 1990

9 Mr Tambourine Man (5.20)

Grammy Awards, February 1991

10 Masters of War (3.48)

Guitar Legends, October 1991

11 All Along the Watchtower (6.24)

12 Boots of Spanish Leather / Across the Borderline (8.21)

13 Answer Me, My Love (3.32)

14 Shake Rattle and Roll (4.14)

David Letterman, January 1992 & November 1993

15 Like a Rolling Stone (6.02)16 Forever Young (4.53)


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