Real Live

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Real Live
Dylan onstage playing harmonica and guitar into a microphone
Live album by Bob Dylan
ReleasedNovember 29, 1984 (1984-11-29)
RecordedJuly 5-8, 1984
GenreFolk rock, hard rock
Length50:15
LabelColumbia
ProducerGlyn Johns
Bob Dylan chronology
Infidels
(1983)
Real Live
(1984)
Empire Burlesque
(1985)
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic3/5 stars[1]
Robert ChristgauB[2]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars[3]

Real Live is a live album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released on November 29, 1984 by Columbia Records. Recorded during the artist's 1984 European Tour, most of the album was recorded at Wembley Stadium on 7 July, but "License to Kill" and "Tombstone Blues" come from St James' Park, Newcastle on 5 July, and "I and I" and "Girl from the North Country" were recorded at Slane Castle, Ireland on 8 July.[4]

Background[edit]

Produced by Glyn Johns, it features Mick Taylor (formerly of the Rolling Stones) on lead guitar, Ian McLagan (formerly of the Faces) on keyboards, and a guest appearance from Carlos Santana.[5] The performances on Real Live were recorded in support of his successful Infidels album.

Reception[edit]

While Infidels was hailed as a "return to musical form" (as described by Kurt Loder in Rolling Stone magazine), critical reception for Real Live was generally mixed. Released in December to capitalize on the Christmas shopping season, Real Live still sold in disappointing numbers, reaching a then-career low of  No.  115 in the U.S. and  No.  54 in the UK.

In his review for Rolling Stone, Kurt Loder, rating the album 3/5, wrote, "Although cynics may find that Dylan's trademark wheeze is verging on self-parody by this point, his singing is truly spirited throughout. The band he assembled for the tour generally serves him well, if without inspiration...some fans may get a giggle out of the rhythm riff – lifted from Ray Charles' 'I Believe to My Soul' – that graces 'Ballad of a Thin Man.' But 'Highway 61 Revisited' is well done as a rocker and 'Tombstone Blues' with Carlos Santana rolls along with great energy."[6]

In Bob Dylan: The Complete Album Guide, Rolling Stone panned Real Live but recognized the album's heavily-revised version of "Tangled Up in Blue" as a "Forgotten Classic."[7] The feature quoted Dylan as stating: "On Real Live, ["Tangled Up in Blue"]'s more like it should have been. The imagery is better."[7]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Bob Dylan.

Side one
No.TitleLength
1."Highway 61 Revisited"5:07
2."Maggie's Farm"4:54
3."I and I"6:00
4."License to Kill"3:26
5."It Ain't Me, Babe"5:17
Side two
No.TitleLength
1."Tangled Up in Blue"6:54
2."Masters of War"6:35
3."Ballad of a Thin Man"4:17
4."Girl from the North Country"4:25
5."Tombstone Blues"4:32

Personnel[edit]

Additional musicians[edit]

Production[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Real Live at AllMusic
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Robert Christgau: CG: Artist 169". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 11 September 2011.
  3. ^ Loder, Kurt (1985-02-14). "Bob Dylan: Real Live : Music Reviews : Rolling Stone". web.archive.org. Archived from the original on 2007-10-01. Retrieved 11 September 2011.
  4. ^ Bieri, Guido (2008). Life on the Tracks: Bob Dylan's Songs. Basel, Switzerland: Lulu. p. 499.
  5. ^ "Real Live | The Official Bob Dylan Site". www.bobdylan.com. Retrieved 2018-07-14.
  6. ^ Loder, Kurt (1985-02-14). "Real Live". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2018-07-14.
  7. ^ a b Sheffield, Rob (2015). "Forgotten Classics". Bob Dylan: The Complete Album Guide: 67 – via Rolling Stone.