Paul Simon talked to the press yesterday in Tel Aviv, Israel, in advance of a concert tonight in Ramat Gan stadium. There is what appears to be a gently-edited twenty-minute clip available on YouTube (and embedded below the text here). It’s a pretty low-key, friendly chat, but interesting enough if you—like me—admire Simon a lot as a songwriter and musician. Simon talks about himself as a secular Jew and refers to his puzzlement at being sometimes expected to opine on behalf of Jews in general, especially with regard to Israeli/Palestinian issues. (Simon deliberately avoids commenting specifically on any political issues; of-course as soon as his gig in Tel Aviv was announced he would have begun coming under pressure to cancel it from those who advocate “Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” against Israel. Clearly he did not cancel it.) Simon talks about the music on his current album and about playing live, and about how he’s taken to preserving the quality of his singing voice through a somewhat ascetic regimen by avoiding smoking, alcohol, coffee and more. (You would have to say that it seems to be working: he turns 70 this year, and still sounds like he did when he was 22.) Continue reading Bob Dylan: the welder of gates – and more from Paul Simon press conference
In fairly typical if frustrating fashion, Bob Dylan seems to have treated his gig today in Israel like any other gig, not playing any special songs (e.g. “Neighborhood Bully”) or making any big pronouncements. (I think Bob believes all his songs are special.) The most amazing thing about the set list is that it is identical to the one from his show in England a couple of days ago. When was the last time Dylan played two consecutive shows with exactly the same set list? For the record this is what he played in Ramat Gan stadium today: Continue reading Bob Dylan in Tel Aviv
Something is happenin’ here but you don’t know what it is, do you, Ms. Jones? (Doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, I know.)
It’s being reported that Rickie Lee Jones will “join” Bob Dylan at his concert in Tel Aviv, Israel on June 20th. Continue reading Rickie Lee Jones with Bob Dylan in Israel?
(Update: Now confirmed at Bob Dylan’s official website.)
Bill Pagel’s site tracking Bob Dylan tour dates now has a whole European tour mapped out in June, and in between London on the 18th and Milan on the 22nd is a date at Ramat Gan Stadium in Tel Aviv, Israel on June 20th. Haaretz is already reporting on it. Continue reading Bob Dylan playing Israel in June?