Mr. Nasal Voice Man

Ah, Bob Dylan. There is little doubt that he is one of the most influential musicians in popular music history. But no matter how brilliant his songs are, there are few of us that can stand to listen to him sing them anymore. It's downright painful, really, and I consider myself a Dylan fan. Folks I know that saw his last show at the Granada had few positive things to say about it. Peter Bogdanovich's new Tom Petty documentary is fascinating until Dylan appears onstage, in full nasal glory and practically begging you to fast forward. It's almost like he phones it in entirely when he plays live anymore, only, you know, through his nose. He's always been a questionable singer, but there was something refreshing and earnest about his voice in the early days, and The Other Side of the Mirror: Live at Newport Folk Festival 1963-1965 captures that perfectly. The legendary "plugged-in" version of "Like a Rolling Stone" is chill-inducing, and though I could live my whole life without hearing Joan Baez caterwauling her way through "With God on Our Side," the concert is a snapshot of an artist in his prime. The AllGood Café, 2934 Main St., gives us a chance to reconnect with the now-fatigued folk singer at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday. For $5, you can pull up a chair, kick back and get a glimpse of Bob Dylan at the top of his game. Enjoy it while it lasts. Visit allgood.com.
Wed., Dec. 19, 8:30 p.m., 2007
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Jennifer Elaine-Davis