1978 WORLD TOUR
In 1978, Dylan embarked on a year-long world tour, performing 114 shows in Japan, the Far East, Europe and the US, to a total audience of two million people. For the tour, Dylan assembled an eight piece band, and was also accompanied by three backing singers. When Dylan brought the tour to the United States in September 1978, he was dismayed the press described the look and sound of the show as a 'Las Vegas Tour'.
The 1978 tour grossed more than $20 million, and Dylan acknowledged to the Los Angeles Times that he had some debts to pay off because "I had a couple of bad years. I put a lot of money into the movie, built a big house ... and it costs a lot to get divorced in California."
It was during the later stages of this tour that Dylan experienced a "born-again" conversion to Christianity, which would become the overriding thematic preoccupation in his music for the next couple of years, such as on the albums SLOW TRAIN COMING (1979) and SAVED (1980).
The tickets, handbills and posters of the tour can be seen here.
There were four programmes for the tour, all of them on glossy paper. The front covers are all the same, but the back covers are different for three of them:
- Far East Tour: 32 pages (20 pages photos, 12 pages text and dates)
- Australia and New Zealand leg: 32 pages (17 pages photos, 15 pages text and advertisements)
- US leg: 32 pages (21 pages photos, of which 1 from the Far East Tour, 11 pages text), printed in the USA,
- Europe leg: same as US legs, with thicker paper. Produced by Brockum International Ltd.
Front cover (same for all legs of the Tour)
back, Far East Tour
back, Australia and New Zealand
back, Europe and USA
This is page 5 of the Japanese programme, signed by Bob Dylan in Tokyo during the 1978 tour,
presented with the five Paris concerts tickets. Private collection.