Maybe you haven't heard: Bob Dylan's coming to the House of Blues for three nights' worth of shows, beginning February 21 through 23. Tickets officially go on sale February 15 -- though, says Dylan's official site, pre-orders will be taken beginning Monday at 9 a.m., for those on the lookout for secret passwords. Dylan will go directly from Dallas to Mexico City, then keep heading further south throughout March. As blues prowler Pat Boyack notes in the comments, Dylan's guitarist for this tour is Dallas' own Denny Freeman -- longtime friend of and collaborator with Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan, among others, as well as a beloved solo artist in his own right.
Now's as good a time as any to link you to some of the better Dylan boots readily available and easily accessible -- like, oh, this collection of outtakes from Bringing It All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde On Blonde collectively known as the legendary Thin Wild Mercury Music. Here, courtesy Captain's Dead, is one of the most coveted Dylan boots around: the sparse, somber New York sessions for the immortal Blood on the Tracks, recorded in Septemer 1974 with Phil Ramone but never released for reasons explained here.
Also courtesy Captain's Dead, Dylan live in 1963 with God and Guthrie on his side. But want strange? Here's something you've never heard: Dylan and Wynton Marsalis collaborating on two Dylan classics -- "It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry" and "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right" -- in June 2004, during Jazz at Lincoln Center's 2004 Spring Gala. Never mind the tragic sound quality; better a rumor than a secret.
Also, approaching show time, I might post a couple of tracks from the Dylan-Johnny Cash-Carl Perkins sessions, among the long-buried Dylan collections in my personal stacks o' wax. Not that I'm a fan or nothing. And did you ask for a video? Thought you did -- like, say, Newport 1965, when everything changed forever. --Robert Wilonsky