April 16, 2009 – 2:38 pm

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Earls Court 1978 [MIG UK-2-A/B, 1CD]

Live at Earls Court, London, England, June 20, 1978. Final night of UK tour. An excellent audience stereo recording. Incomplete show.

“This one is a classic. It was reviewed in Melody Maker and NME as though it was an official release. I read the review on a Thursday and on Saturday my local record shop had it in their racks, £5, and worth every penny, hats off to the Bootleggers.” - JTT, Sept 2008. Shared on Dime.

Now that Bob Dylan’s new album is around the corner, time to dust off the bootlegs and give them a spin. Here’s a fine one, as described above, taken from JTT’s vinyl copy and a first edition to boot.

All the fun of buying bootlegs is present. The vinyl pops here and there [not distracting at all, in fact comforting of real life in our digital age], the talkative fan standing next to the taper, thankfully for a very short time at the start. And, finally, the slight echo of the vastness of Earls Court is present offering an ambience that would be lacking in a sterile soundboard recording.

Of the performance? Dylan was certainly searching for his place in the ever-expanding rock music universe after the Rolling Thunder tours, the crusade for Hurricane Carter and now on the eve of the British punk and new wave explosion, he had offered a new sermon with Street Legal. This was a very muscular performance sans the elegance and old-time style of The Band or the communal get together of Rolling Thunder, Dylan’s band tonight rocked hard in a modern fashion. Listen to the horns blare sharply. Dylan has to scream. Tonight, Woodstock was more than 10 years ago.

If Dylan wanted his music to be a career, then here was the beginning of his Neverending Tours. Of the 10 tracks offered here, only Senor [Tales Of Yankee Power] is new. The rest are the man’s classics. Just listen to Dylan do a reggae Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right. You bet, he didn’t think twice. The thin wild mercury music never stops.
- Professor Red

Thanks to superfan JTT for sharing.

LINEAGE: Very Good Vinyl LP > Technics SL-110/SME 3009 Series 111/Goldring G1010 >
Onkyo P-304 Pre Amp > Soundforge 9 > FLAC Level 6 Align on sector boundaries

These tracks are no longer available for sharing.Track 01. Ballad Of A Thin Man
Track 02. Maggie’s Farm
Track 03. I Don’t Believe You
Track 04. Like A Rolling Stone
Track 05. Blowin’ In The Wind
Track 06. Senor [Tales Of Yankee Power]
Track 07. Masters Of War
Track 08. Just Like A Woman
Track 09. Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right
Track 10. It’s Alright Ma (Only Bleeding)

TT: 51.36m

Bob Dylan - vocal, gtr
Billy Cross - gtr
Alan Pasqua - keyboards
Steven Soles - rhythm gtr, backup vocals
David Mansfield - violin, mandolin
Steve Douglas - horns
Jerry Scheff - bs
Bobbye Hall - percussion
Ian Wallace - drums
Singers - Helena Springs, Jo Ann Harris and Carolyn Dennis

One of the great ’70s albums of Dylan’s. His voice had matured but the steely determination was intact. Now focused on being a “big” “super” star, this album was produced with a big band, soul singers, horns and some heavy playing. It has aged well. Click on the link to buy Bob Dylan albums.

  1. 19 Responses to “BOB DYLAN - EARLS COURT 1978”

  2. Nice !
    Let me be the first to say thanks
    Regards, Mal

    By Mal on Apr 16, 2009

  3. Great concert!
    Thanks ;-)

    By rochacrimson on Apr 16, 2009

  4. thanks, I can’t get enough of Dylan.
    It would be great if you also could offer recordings from the 90`s and from the last years. His last tour with Charlie Sexton (2003?? - I don’t remember) was brillliant.

    JTT writes that this recording was reviewed as an official recording – the official live recording from this tour was released in 1978, “Dylan at Budokan”. Recorded a few months before the Earls Court show (Feb 28 & March 1), “Budokan” got some of the worst reviews in His Bobness’ career. For me, it’s still one of the most underrated Dylan-albums (but still not one of the best).
    It was brave and wise to “destroy” the old songs like he did on this tour (the new arragements of the Rolling Thunder tour or his tour with The Band were much more “conservative” - although sometimes/often better), so he could “free” the old songs for the future.

    Talking of changing the songs and new recordings: I’ve seen Dylan two weeks ago, his “new” version of the old, sometimes boring “Blowing in the Wind” is really good, he plays it almost in country-swing-style.

    By the way, Professor Red: at the night of this Earls Court concert Woodstock (August 1969) was not “more than 10 years ago”, not even nine years. Maybe the philosophical and atmospherical gap was more than 10 years wide (or did you refer to Monterey, June 1967?).

    By Walter on Apr 16, 2009

  5. Thanks, but there is no way you can argue, even now, that Street Legal is a great album or even one of the better albums of the 70s. Please don’t by that record, you’ll only end up hating Dylan for releasing it. Instead, download Senor and Journey Through Dark Heat, the only two songs worth owning from the record.

    By Brian F. on Apr 17, 2009

  6. Thanks for more great Bob

    By Matt on Apr 17, 2009

  7. Yes, thanks for Earls Court, even tho’ it is incomplete. Thanks. Hope you soon put up his interview with Bud Flanagan … it’s pretty good and quite entertaining. Cheers!

    By Canute on Apr 17, 2009

  8. Another great upload from Professor Red. I happened to be in Europe over 4th of July, 1978 and saw Dylan in Paris. It was so different from the last show I had seen (Bob and the Band in Chicago) that I was a little put off at the time. As they say, time heals all wounds. I am listening to “Street Legal” as I write and am really enjoying these songs. Thanks for the flashback! Dylan fans should check out the T.U.B.E. site for Bob live all over the place, including 3 nights in Amsterdam recorded only days ago.

    By Johnny Kinkdom on Apr 17, 2009

  9. I have this lp. I was also at the concert. I’m not sure which was worse - watching Bob in his sparkly pants from 200 yards away or listening later to the mauling he gave the songs he played. Why did I even buy the frigging thing? I do not know. Avoid at all costs!

    By Jon on Apr 18, 2009

  10. Interesting to hear, but not something I would revist when I want to hear Dylan. Thanks nevertheless.

    By Dave C. on Apr 19, 2009

  11. “Mother say don’t hate nothing at all except Vegas!”
    “All right I’ve had enough what else can you show me?”
    …Not much as it turned out.
    I saw this tour when it blew…
    into Boston Gardens. I got off the bus on the never ending tour after that.
    For me, Blood On The Tracks was the final gasp.
    The Basement Tapes came out the very same year, and that is so much better than that.
    …Is it me? Yeah, it must be me. My bad.
    Thanks though for the share as always.

    By thewaymouth on Apr 24, 2009

  12. I’m listening to the repost right now - there are some fantastic versions on this recording.

    By walter on Feb 13, 2010

  13. The only “horrible” thing about this is the recording. The performance is F-in AWESOME!! The horns are excellent and the arrangements just get better. I can understand how some people want only the same arrangement as the original but then just think how tired you would become from hearing the same thing over and over. It is because he changes the themes and structures that it is unidentifiable and so cool to listen to. Get into the newness of it! Love you Bobby!

    By lanzarishi on Feb 15, 2010

  14. Brian F. could you please list your credentials here for all to see, which I assume must be vast, to allow you to decide so categorically what is and isn’t good. Perhaps you are Bob himself? Or god? In which case hats off to you, otherwise I think you may have forgotten four simple words, “in my humble opinion”.
    I like some Dylan more than others and dislike others, but I do not presume that what I like and don’t is the definitive say on the man’s career, the problem with you is that you probably are incapable of understanding Bob’s moves or motives for periods in his career like this, and shout “judas” instead of listening, or simply ignoring.
    To paraphrase another Dylan song, “I wish you could stand for one minute in my shoes, and just for that one moment I could be you. You would know what a drag it is to see you.”
    Keep your opinions to yourself, or make it known that that is what you are expressing in future and stop making the internet such a tiresome place to come and be bludgeoned in by the likes of yourself day by day. Twat.

    By Zimmerframe on Jan 24, 2011

  15. I too was in Paris in July. Frankly I can’t remember which day it was. I also tried to figure out where the Pavilion des Paris is/was, but I think it may be gone? Anyway, it was a thrill seeing Bob Dylan for the first time. He was pretty amiable. I remember being amazed at how he had altered the structure of most of the songs I was familiar with. His songs; he gets to do what he wants. I still play Blonde on Blonde constantly. Just tonight I put on the Rolling Thunder DVD and then the CD. Great stuff. What a long strange trip it’s been. From Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    By Neil Trembley on Apr 24, 2011

  16. Amazing how so many fans think they are the real fan ! Mr D cant please everyone all the time otherwise his career would have been about 3 albums 2 years and handful of No, 1s-Instead he has developed and grown into a phenomem of lyrical wonder.I often struggle with a new album then a few weeks later track after track you understand and except it as another twist in the tale his album s have become a library of styles all from the same artist - which no one else has ever achieved.
    How long can a young musician be angry at the world- especially in his 70TH YEAR! Embrace the changes the styles and the turning away from the audience - its just DYLAN!!
    For me my favourite live performance is ballad version of tangled up in blue from Earls court and Ballad OF thin man same gig -
    i had a white german pressing sadly broken in house move!!
    so please if u have similar [email protected]
    Finsbury park tomorrow for his bobbiness

    By harry land on Jun 17, 2011

  17. poet scholar and an hero of the highest order.
    A privilege to be on the same planet as him.

    By harry rowlands on Oct 14, 2011

  18. Always loved the world tour of 1978 out of all the concerts i have got apart from blackbushe i have no other U.K shows, please bring it back, cheers

    By Bob on Jan 21, 2017

  19. Could you please re-upload this concert I was at the 17th June one but can’t find that so this would be great

    By jimra on Jul 15, 2017

  20. Hi Jimra. Hope you enjoy this, I sure do. I like the way he is rollicking on here. He is having fun with the different styling.

    By ScarRad on Jul 15, 2017

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