It was his 100th and final show of 2008, and he jump-started the eighteen-song set with “Gotta Serve Somebody,” delivered from the center of the stage accompanied only by his harp. It was the first time he played the song since February 5, 2002, and halfway through he started freestyling crazy new verses like:
Over and Out
Under and In
No matter where you are
No matter where you’ve been
You still gotta serve somebody.
We also learned that he picked up the guitar again that night and performed the lyrical and pensive Tomorrow Is A Long Time (first released on his Greatest Hits Vol. II though recorded at the renowned “Town Hall Concert”) and the first time the song has been performed in New York since at least 1963. One wonders if memoir-writing Suze was in the audience?
Bob Dylan kicks off his final performance of his current tour with a rousing new version of Gotta Serve Somebody (hit track on his first Gospel album, Slow Train Comin’) on Friday night in New York City. Almost went to the show but DC is one wild place right now and just can’t get away. Dylan’s not only got a new arrangement – he’s back on the harp in a way he hasn’t been in a quite a while.
“When was the last time he did a kind of call and response with himself on harp?” RWB asks. “I can’t remember anyhow.” Well, neither can we – not like this. This is the question before our country right now – we gotta serve somebody. Who’s it gonna be?
Thank you, thank you, thank you, RWB. Drinks are on the house today in your honor.