Bob Dylan in Cincinnati 


Lily Anderson

Bob Dylan, a music icon. Known for his protest songs like “Blowin’ in the Wind.” He performed at the March on Washington and protested wars. He was known as the Shakespeare of his generation. The 1960’s was changed and the years and decades to come after too.  

Bob Dylan stopped in Cincinnati on Nov. 9, 2021. It might be seen as just another stop on his “Never Ending Tour” that started in 1988, but to his fans it’s a concert of a lifetime. Dylan gained the Nobel Peace Prize for his songwriting in 2016 and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1982, 1988, and 2002. He was also awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. A man like this coming to town isn’t just another day. 

The concert took place at the Aronoff Center for the Arts and all the seats were filled. The ages ranged from original fans, gen X and millennials, to even children. Patrons filed in with masks and tickets, and their phones off. At this concert no phones were allowed to be out; this isn’t too new for Dylan though. At his concert on Nov. 8, 2019, at the BB&T Arena, the phone policy was the same: Once in the concert hall phones and cameras off and away. 

He played each song a little different from how they were originally recorded, especially “Gotta Serve Somebody.” The religious slow song was turned into a full-on rock song. Many songs had a more rock sound which was a decently big change. Another change was just Bob Dylan himself. In earlier shows he would walk around and play guitar or stand while playing the piano. He had no struggle walking around for an 80-year-old man. Though in this concert he needed to sit, hold the microphone stand, and lean against the piano for support. He only played piano or just sang for a couple songs. He is an 80-year-old man but that didn’t stop him from being witty and making a joke. “Cincinnati, Roy Rogers and Charles Manson were from here. Wonder if they knew each other.” Dylan said. He had answered the big question of the night, “Would Dylan address the audience?” At his concert at BB&T Arena he didn’t say anything; he just performed and left. This isn’t too new either; in recent shows he hasn’t said anything. However, this year at the Aronoff he made the remarks, and the crowd was ecstatic.  

All in all the show was one of the best he’s had. All the songs were perfectly arranged. They almost were a rock lullaby with the perfect playing. The crowd had a lot of fun with yelling “Yeah!” During the show. They had a good reason to though. The lyrics were witty, and he sang with the most amazing voice. The show was perfect.