A few weeks ago, Kevin and I went to see Bob Dylan at Convention Hall in Asbury Park. Leon Russell opened. I have to admit that I didn't really know what to expect. I've never seen Dylan or Russell live in concert and never paid attention to either's live concert "reputation".
It was a rainy night (like so many nights recently) and the drive down was kinduva drag, but, hey, at least it was an indoor concert! (I've taken to seeing Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes at their yearly Stone Pony concert around July 4th. It's an outdoor show and, fortunately, Mother Nature has cooperated [so far] with the weather for every show I've attended. One of these years, it's gonna be ugly.)
Convention Hall is small enough that a show there feels relatively intimate. Nearer a club than a stadium or the like. I swear that, when I first saw the show advertised, it was scheduled for The Paramount. That's a neat venue and, assuming I wasn't imagining things when I thought it was originally scheduled for The Paramount, I would've preferred to see the show there. But it was not to be (and perhaps never was).
Anyway, Russell opened the show. I can't say I'm well versed on Leon Russell, but since the show I've learned just how prolific one man can be. Since I've never seen him before, I can't offer any comparisons to previous peformances, tours, etc. He and his band offered a tight, upbeat set. It was a fun set, too, in that the band seemed to be having fun and the audience seemed into it as well.
I enjoyed Dylan's show. Again, no basis for comparison to other shows of his (for some, comparing artists across shows seems to be the thing to do). Actually, I'm glad I wasn't really aware of either Russell or Dylan's live performance reputations as it allowed me to just go see the show without any preconceived notions or expectations. Anyway, there was much to like about the show. The mix of songs. His band. His own performance. His energy. The audience's energy back at him. All in all, I thought it was a good show with a lot of positive energy that made it fun.
We had hoped to get to AP in time to have dinner somewhere, but we made it just in time to get to our seats as Russell was starting up. The small size of the venue makes most seats pretty decent seats. (There were floor/general admission tickets, but I went with regular seating bc I'm vertically challenged.)
I do like going to see shows and do things in Asbury Park. It's fun, it's relatively easy to get to, it's not far at all and it's a user friendly city. I'll write again about another trip I took to AP, shortly after this concert, with a couple of friends on a Girls' Day Out. We made a pit stop in Red Bank, which looks to be another good place to have fun.