Celebrate Bob Dylan’s 80th Birthday by Revisiting His July 4, 1987 Performance with the Grateful Dead
Today, May 24, 2021, marks Bob Dylan’s 80th birthday. The legendary musician was born on this day in 1941 in Duluth, Minn. He released his debut, self-titled record in 1962, and since then has been a fixture of American music and pop culture, with a career spanning over 60 years.
In 1987, Dylan embarked on a short tour with the Grateful Dead. The opening show, July 4, 1987 at Sullivan Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., saw Dylan join the Dead for the entire second set of their show, as well as the encore. To celebrate his 80th year, we’re revisiting the performance.
During his guest appearance, Dylan and the Dead performed several Dylan classics, including a set-opening “The Times They Are A-Changin’,” “Queen Jane Approximately” and “All Along the Watchtower.” A full video of the set is available below, via YouTube user Christopher Hazard.
As he heads into the seventh decade of his career, Dylan continues to release new studio projects. Nearly a year ago, he released his most recent record, Rough and Rowdy Ways, his 39th studio offering overall and his first since 2017. However, the album was actually the first original music Dylan had released in over eight years; his three albums prior to Rowdy Ways (2015’s Shadows in the Night, 2016’s Fallen Angels and 2017’s Triplicate) did not feature original music; rather, Dylan interpreted the music of Frank Sinatra (on Shadows and Fallen Angels) and American songwriting classics (on Triplicate).
Watch his appearance with the Grateful Dead below: