Dylan and his band, sans opening acts, will begin their newest Stateside shows August 2 in Massachusetts. A substantial amount of Canadian gigs are planned – 11 to be precise – through the start of September.

Recent tours have found Dylan on the road with Phil Lesh and Paul Simon. But in the past four years, he’s performed about 450 concerts around the world, and most of them have been pure Bob.

This time around, he has a new album to support. Love & Theft was released last September. The disc was recorded with his touring band and special guests including legendary Texas keyboard player Augie Myers.

Just last month, a set of rare, early Dylan recordings were saved from possible extinction thanks to a grant from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. The demos were recorded in a New York apartment in the early ‘60s and were in tape form. The grant will help transfer the tapes onto CD, thus saving them from fading with time.

Former Grammy head Michael Greene said, “Let’s face it: Many times the most candid comments, the most revealing situations that people put themselves in are in those demos.”