Originally available as a limited promotion through Amazon for pre-orders of Dylan’s “Original Mono Recordings” and “Bootleg Vol.9” releases last year, overwhelming demand by fans and the public prodded Columbia to make this special recording more commercially available. The new release will see exclusive liner notes by Dylan expert Michael Gray, detailing the each song’s historical significance and cultural context. Dylan, 21 years old at the time of the recording, rolls through then relatively unknown songs as “Honey, Just Allow Me One More Chance”, “Talkin’ John Birch Paranoia Blues”, “Masters of War” and “Talkin’ Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues.”
The concert tape, owned by Rolling Stone co-founder Ralph J. Gleason, sat largely forgotten on a shelf for over 40 years. “It had been forgotten, until it was found last year in the clearing of the house after my mother died,” said Toby Gleason, Ralph’s son. “It’s a seven inch reel-to-reel that sounds like it was taped from the mixing desk.”
“It’s a small miracle this recording exists,” Gray writes in his essay. “Clearly a professional recording…. (t)he Bob Dylan performance it captured, from way back when Kennedy was President and the Beatles hadn’t yet reached America, wasn’t even on fans’ radar…. It reveals him not at any Big Moment but giving a performance like his folk club sets of the period: repertoire from an ordinary working day….Dylan has leapt a creative canyon with this material….This is the last live performance we have of Bob Dylan before he becomes a star….”
Pre-orders for the live concert are now available trough bobdylan.com, and will also be available at independent music retailers.