As soon as we checked into the hotel, we headed to the liquor store for some beer. Dad actually had to settle for Miller Lite, as there was not PBR to be found in in the middle-of-nowhere Pittsfield store. (The horror!) We quickly downed some and headed for the ball park. As we approached the entrance, the line curved around the block. So we kept walking, trying to find the end, and realized we were not about wait in a line a mile long. We turned around and headed to the parking lot...where we walked directly into the park - proving there was no need to wait in line (silly people!). Since we cut our wait time by about an hour, we walked straight to the stage and scoped out our spot. We sat surrounded by blankets and happy strangers just 15 feet from the stage watching as the people poured in, pondering why anyone would chose to sit in the stands where you could barely make out the stage, let alone see the performers. I went to get us some beers and we sat soaking up the sun waiting for the show to begin. My dad had struck up a conversation with our neighbors who was also made up of a father and daughter duo, as well as her hippy friends. There was no where else I would've rather have been. Bring on Willie.
The opening band, The Greencards, was a compilation of musicians from Australia and England that met in Austin, Texas. They're music is ironically quite American, rocking out the fiddle (my personal favorite) and mandolin to create a bluegrass sound infused with obvious influences of rock and celtic. Bluegrass being one of my musical loves, I was blown away by this band that had only been together for a little over a year and were already touring with Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson. Talk about luck. I was especially intrigued by the female bassist, who was obviously psyched to be doing what she was doing (and really, who wouldn't be?), rocking the bass and looking incredible sexy while doing so. I was hooked.
Then Willie came out, the black curtain fell to release Texas state flag, and his family started playing (literally, two of his sons younger than me were in the band and his aunt played the piano). It turns out I knew many more songs of his than I thought I would. He played Crazy and I was filled with memories of my grandmother listening to Patsy Cline on our road trips south. He sang On the Road Again and I felt like I was in the back seat of our family car on the way to one of our camping trips as a kid. It was perfect being there with my dad. He played all the greats, and he was better live than I would've thought (knowing now that was stupid of me). The beer goes down nicely when you have Willie singing along with you. (Although, I'm guessing there's a little something else that might go even better, but beer did the trick that night.)
Finally, Dylan came on stage. The Texas flag was dropped to reveal his insignia (see below), that just prior to I had seen the same logo tattooed on a the back of a woman's neck. He came out dressed in a deep purple-almost black suit with a white cowboy hat. He set up in front of a keyboard and didn't move the rest of the night, except to check his set list after every song. He would walk back to the sheet in what seemed like a daze, to only continue without a word spoken to the crowd below. He had an acoustic guitar set up right next to the keyboards, but it remained untouched the entire show. He played song after song without any recognition from the people who were there to see him; we were left wondering if we would know any of the lyrics he was mumbling with such humility. Right when I thought it was over without one song I could sing along to, he came out with Like a Rolling Stone for an encore and put the cherry on top of the entire night. I enjoyed the music the whole set, but wanted that one familiar song, and man he gave it to me.
The next morning we slept in until 9, and my dad didn't snore once. It was the pefect night. I am so lucky in so many ways.