Letter to the Editor: It wasn’t you, Bob Dylan, that didn’t live up to expectations it was us

Gary Zaharatos

This letter is in response to one written by Tim Cron.

When Bob Dylan stops in your town and you decide to see him perform, only a song or two in, you as the casual fan who knows Bob mostly from his ’60s catalog is met with a decision to make:

1. Are you here simply to post on Facebook that you were present and to grumble about how you couldn’t sing along to the few songs you knew or that you didn’t understand the words to songs you didn’t bother to listen to in the months leading up to the show?

Or …

2. Will you commit to being fully present while in the same room as the greatest songwriter of our time and trust that he is delivering something special and unique?

The answer, my friend, is of course the latter. 

On Saturday night, Nobel Prize winner Bob Dylan stopped in Dillion to play one of the smallest venues he’s played in decades and, in all honesty, if anyone didn’t live up to expectations, it was the Dillon crowd. 

There was a constant murmur among those on the concrete and lawn throughout the evening, with many folks carrying on full conversations during the performance, proving to be a major distraction to those who came to meditate in the presence of an icon. One can imagine many quiet car rides home since anything that needed to be said was likely talked about during the show. 

If you didn’t enjoy the show, it wasn’t a result of something lacking on the stage; it was because you (and a large portion of the Dillon crowd) were unprepared, unappreciative, inattentive and unwilling to yield yourself to an artist who has always, since the beginning, done things precisely his way, with no concern over what you’ll say at the watercooler on Monday.

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