Album: The Bootleg Series Volume 4.
The first thing you need to know about the legendary Royal Albert Hall concert is that it wasn’t recorded at the Royal Albert Hall. Instead, the greatest, wildest, most fucked-up visionary set of rock and roll music ever was recorded in Manchester. It was either misinformation or bootleggers hype that this ridiculously great piece of music became known to crazed Dylan fans as “Royal Albert Hall.”
Where even to start? How bout this insane blast of energy, which itself starts with what feels like random strumming until somebody (probably Dylan) counts off 1 … 2 … 3 … 4, and with a WHACK! of Mickey Jones’ snare drum, Dylan and The Hawks just fucking explode.
With Garth Hudson’s planet-covering organ and Robbie Robertson’s ever-changing guitar leading the way, “Tell Me Momma” barrels its way through its verses nearly crashing prior to every chorus
But I know that you know that I know that you show
Something is tearing up your miiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnnnd!
This is so fucking audacious: not only was Dylan “betraying” his audience by playing the hardest, fullest rock music that anyone had ever heard, he led with a song that nobody had even heard before! Or, for that matter – since Dylan never recorded a studio version – they likely would never heard again.
Imagine being a punter who hated that Dylan was going electric. By the time they got to the breakdown with Robertson’s typical mathematical rearguard solo, you’d be so furious, you wouldn’t know what to do. Meanwhile, Dylan, supremely confident, and one of the hugest, most totally wired assholes to ever walk the planet, was spoiling for a fight.
A fight, of course, he pretty much won with this first-round knockout punch..
Official Video for “Tell Me Momma”
My Certain Songs Spotify Playlist: