Let’s take a trip down memory lane and remember when Van Morrison was a musician rather than a conspiracy theorist. Seeing icons fall from grace is always a harrowing sight to witness, but this gorgeous duet of ‘It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue’ with Bob Dylan is a reminder of a more amicable time in Van’s life.
The two artists have known each other for decades, but their friendship began thanks to Van Morrison stalking his hero. He moved out to Woodstock in 1967 after the break up of Them, mainly because it’s where Dylan lived. The Irish singer was searching for something new, and the British scene was something that he wanted to flee.
Morrison has never been short of confidence in his own ability and simply didn’t think that anybody else was on his level, so he left London to start a new chapter. Even though the English capital was a hotbed of mercurial talent, and the counter-culture scene in the city was at its creative height, Morrison sought pastures new.
“Van fully intended to become Dylan’s best friend,” his then-wife, Janet Rigsbee, later recalled. “Every time we’d drive past Dylan’s house … Van would just stare wistfully out the window at the gravel road leading to Dylan’s place. He thought Dylan was the only contemporary worthy of his attention.”
Things didn’t go to plan in Woodstock, and he’d soon move out to Masacheustus, where he’d make a name for himself on the club circuit. His career as a solo artist took off from there, and soon enough, he had Dylan to class as a fan.
They’ve toured together countless times, and Dylan even covered Morrison’s song, ‘Carrying A Torch’, six times during one concert in 2002, which speaks volumes about the esteem that he holds Van Morrison in.
They both share a tempestuous streak and have never gone out of their way to endear themselves to the masses, which probably explains why they see eye to eye so intensely.
Bob Dylan’s performance at Slane Castle is one of his most notorious performances and, in truth, hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons. Perhaps, the only shimmer of light from the whole evening was his delightful duet of ‘It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue’, with the assistance of his old friend, Van Morrison.
Rural Ireland was not equipped to host a concert of this magnitude, and scenes got out of hand when fans ran riot after the show ended, which understandably distressed the bamboozled locals. Furthermore, shops were looted in the neighbouring village, and it was left looking reminiscent of a warzone.
Dylan and Morrison don’t like a lot of things in life, but the esteem they hold each other in is visible for all to see during this spine-tingling rendition of ‘It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue’. Sit back, grab a drink, and revel in this beautiful moment.