Dylan in Providence, RI, 1965

In 1965 I took a month-long sabbatical from my job as an insurance broker in San Francisco. The counter-cultural movement of the ’60s was in full bloom and I wanted to explore a bit of the world. I took a Greyhound bus to Bakersfield, where I hopped on a freight car. Got off in Barstow and started hitchhiking. My second ride took me all the way to Detroit in a 1950 Ford. From there, bus to New York and after hanging out there for a week I went to see my cousin Mike, a painter living in Provincetown, at the tip of Cape Cod. On the way back from Mike’s I got a ride from a bunch of students at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. There was a Bob Dylan concert that night. Did I want to come?

Did I!

I took my Nikon 35 mm camera and rolls of tri-x. Things were so loose in those days — just having the camera meant the cops let me walk right up to the stage. Told them I was a photographer for some newspaper, heh-heh.

The first half of the concert was folk music, not thrilling to moi. After the intermission a bunch of musicians came out and guess what — rock and roll! A number of people got up and left, muttering. Dylan didn’t care. The world was opening up for him. A great concert. I shot a bunch of pix and had a front row vantage point. In looking back at these old photos, I realize that the other guy here is Robbie Robertson — history in the making.

I got back to San Francisco eventually in drive-away cars (VW fom NY to Miami, Pontiac from Miami to Phoenix), hitching to SF. The morning after I got back, I got up, heard the faint hum of commute traffic going into SF on the nearby freeway, quit my job, and started to work as a carpenter.

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

4 Responses to Dylan in Providence, RI, 1965

  1. Lloyd,

    Thanks for chatting yesterday, would love to follow up sometime and bring some great Dylan recordings out to Bolinas… Something on the order of a Knopfler Dylan compilation… Those were great shows.


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