Thursday, April 14, 2016

A different twist on a classic for hard times -- Dylan performs "A Hard Rain's Going to Fall" with the Tokyo New Philharmonic Orchestra

Bob Dylan, Ry Cooder, Tokyo New Philharmonic Orchestra in Japan '94

00:00 A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall
07:37 I Shall Be Released
11:17 Michael Kamen Interview
12:18 Ring Them Bells with Ry Cooder

ltk Lyrics at on Dylan's official website, as recorded on the Freewheelin' album.

According to a Wikipedia article at, the performance was part of a UNESCO-backed concert starring Japanese and international musicians, including Dylan, Jon Bon Jovi, Joni Mitchell and INXS, staged in May 1994 at the eighth-century Buddhist temple of Tōdai-ji, in Nara, Japan:

UNESCO hoped that the event would be the first of seven annual concerts that would take place at some of the world's architectural treasures -- the sites it had in mind included the Pyramids, China's Forbidden City and the Taj Mahal -- but nothing came of the idea. ...

* * *

UNESCO hoped that a series of concerts would be able to use the appeal of rock musicians to widen the audience for the world's cultural heritage. The Tōdai-ji concert would also help to promote traditional Japanese music. It was important for traditional musicians to stand on the same stage with Dylan and Bon Jovi.

A review in Q magazine, paraphrased in the Wikipedia account, adds this:

The star of the show turned out to be Dylan who said as soon as he came off-stage that he had not sung so well for 15 years. Dylan opened with A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall which Q magazine said was "no ordinary version...[he] really opens his lungs and heart and sings, like he's not done for many a year...The only word for it majestic."

No comments: