Bob Dylan may need more than one cup of coffee for the road in 2005: The sixty-three-year-old legend’s schedule includes a spring tour with country veteran Merle Haggard, a possible repeat of last summer’s outing with Willie Nelson, the paperback release of his best-selling memoir, Chronicles: Volume One, and a Martin Scorsese-helmed documentary.
First up is the two-month-long tour with Haggard, beginning Monday in Seattle. The country singer-songwriter’s 1969 hit “Okie From Muskogee” (“We don’t burn no draft cards down on Main Street”) assailed the counterculture that claimed Dylan as a leader. But the sixty-seven-year-old Haggard says he’s “as big a Bob Dylan fan as anybody. I haven’t been a show opener for years, and I wouldn’t open for just anybody. But I’m honored to do it for Bob. There’s a lot of similarities between us: We both play guitar, we both live in America and we’re both probably better songwriters than we are singers.”
Haggard says he hasn’t yet bought a copy of Chronicles, but more than 500,000 others have. “It’s an enormous success — one of the best-selling memoirs of the year,” says David Rosenthal, executive vice president of the book’s publisher, Simon & Schuster, “Everything about this book has exceeded our expectations.” Chronicles was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, with a winner to be announced on March 18th. (Another date to watch: Pulitzer Prize nominees are unveiled on April 4th.) A paperback version is due in October. Simon & Schuster also plans to publish Chronicles: Volume Two, but don’t expect Dylan to deliver a manuscript anytime soon. “It’d be wonderful to have it in the next few years,” says Rosenthal. “But we’ll get it when we get it.”
The excavation of Dylan’s past will continue in Scorsese’s two-part documentary, No Direction Home, due to air on PBS in September, followed by a DVD release. The three-and-a-half-hour film will draw from ten hours of taped Dylan interviews, conducted by his manager, Jeff Rosen. Using previously unseen footage from Dylan’s archives, the movie will reportedly focus on the start of his career, from 1961 to 1966. “It’s nonfiction — maybe,” Scorsese said in January. “With Bob Dylan, you never know.”
A two-CD collection of outtakes and live recordings used in the film is tentatively set for an August 16th release, as the seventh volume in Dylan’s Bootleg Series. The documentary will also spawn the Bob Dylan Scrapbook, which will include Dylan artifacts such as lyric sheets and contracts.
Meanwhile, Dylan is in the early stages of planning a second tour with Nelson. As for a new studio album, Dylan told Rolling Stone in October that he has “a bunch” of new songs written and that he hoped to record them “sometime in the beginning of the year.”
Bob Dylan tour dates:
3/7: Seattle, Paramount Theater
3/8: Seattle, Paramount Theater
3/9: Seattle, Paramount Theater
3/11: Portland, Chiles Center
3/12: Portland, Chiles Center
3/14: Oakland, Paramount Theater
3/15: Oakland, Paramount Theater
3/16: Oakland, Paramount Theater
3/18: Reno, NV, Reno Hilton
3/19: Las Vegas, Aladdin Theater
3/21: Los Angeles, Pantages Theater
3/22: Los Angeles, Pantages Theater
3/23: Los Angeles, Pantages Theater
3/25: Los Angeles, Pantages Theater
3/26: Los Angeles, Pantages Theater
3/28: Denver, Fillmore Auditorium
3/29: Denver, Fillmore Auditorium
4/1: Chicago, Auditorium Theater
4/2: Chicago, Auditorium Theater
4/3: Chicago, Auditorium Theater
4/5: Chicago, Auditorium Theater
4/6: Chicago, Auditorium Theater
4/8: Milwaukee, WI, Eagles Ballroom
4/9: Milwaukee, WI, Eagles Ballroom
4/11: Mt. Pleasant, MI, Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort
4/12: Detroit, Masonic Temple Theater
4/13: Buffalo, NY, Shea’s Performing Arts Center
4/15: Boston, Orpheum Theater
4/16: Boston, Orpheum Theater
4/17: Boston, Orpheum Theater
4/19: Newark, NJ, New Jersey Performing Arts Center
4/20: Verona, NY, Turning Stone Casino and Resort
4/22: Mashantucket, CT, Foxwoods Resort Casino
4/24: Atlantic City, NJ, Borgata Resort Spa and Casino
4/25: New York, Beacon Theater
4/26: New York, Beacon Theater
4/28: New York, Beacon Theater
4/29: New York, Beacon Theater
4/30: New York, Beacon Theater
Brian Wilson is taking his SMiLE to Europe for the spring and summer festival season, including a slot at England’s legendary Glastonbury, then returning to North American shores for an August and September leg.
In recent years, the founding Beach Boy toured mainly theatres and performing arts centers, venues with the kind of acoustics that accentuate the complex vocal and instrumental pieces Wilson wrote for Pet Sounds and last year’s SMiLE.
This time around, he’s throwing a few more sheds into the mix.
After hitting such European festivals as Glasto and Roskilde, Wilson returns to the States August 8th with a stop at Bank of America Pavilion in Boston.
He’ll swing through some other major East Coast sheds as well, including Wolf Trap in Vienna, Va.; the P.N.C. Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, N.J.; and Tommy Hilfiger at Jones Beach Theatre in New York.
He’ll play some indoor dates as well, including the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee; Paramount Theatre in Seattle and Arlene Schnitzer Hall in Portland, Ore.
Wilson will wrap things up with a swing down the West Coat with stops September 3rd at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., and a tour finale at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles the next day.
As with last year’s outing, the centerpiece of the show will be a performance of SMiLE in its entirety. The album, released in September after almost 40 years in the making, brought Wilson his first career Grammy Award last month for “Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow.”
Laconic genre-blender Jack Johnson starts a summer tour August 1 in Houston, Texas at the Verizon Wireless Theater. The dates cover more than 30 markets throughout the U.S. and Canada and end on September 17 in Toronto at the Molson Ampitheatre.Special guests on the dates will be ALO and Matt Costa.
Pre-sale tickets will be available through www.jackjohnsonmusic.com starting March 12. General public on-sales for most dates is March 19.
Jack Johnson’s new album, In Between Dreams, hits stores March 1 and will be the first music CD to be released with the 1% for the Planet logo. 1% for the Planet (1% FTP) is an alliance of businesses committed to leveraging their resources to create a healthier planet.
Over the course of the past weekend, Wilco front-man Jeff Tweedy played two solo sold out shows at Chicago