Odds & Ends: Bob Dylan, Julio Iglesias vs. The Donald, Judas Priest

Bob Dylan shills for IBM … Julio Iglesias says he will “never again’ play Donald Trump’s venues … Judas Priest nixes a No. Calif. gig planned for later this month.

Photo: Jeffrey R. Staab / CBS via AP
Late Show With Dave Letterman, New York City

The times are still a changin’ for Bob Dylan.  Often referred to as the “voice of his generation,” Dylan’s many career milestones include his “going electric” at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival, his return to touring in the form of his 1974 road trip with The Band, and becoming a “born again” Christian in the late 1970s.

Dylan’s forays into the world of big advertising aren’t necessarily a new thing.  The Bard of Minnesota appeared in a 2004 Victoria’s Secret TV advertisement; worked with Cadillac on a multimedia campaign for company’s 2008 Escalade and appeared with Black Eyed Peas’ will.i.am in a Pepsi ad that debuted on the Super Bowl XLIII 2009 broadcast.  So Dylan and Madison Avenue’s “Mad Men” are well-acquainted.

But Dylan’s newest advertising appearance might also be his most surreal.  His latest endeavor into hawking products features the music legend conversing with IBM’s Watson, the super computer that made headlines when it appeared as a contestant on TV’s  “Jeopardy,” and snagged the $1 million prize by defeating the program’s past champs Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings.

Watson tells Dylan that it has read all his lyrics and has determined that “time passes” and “love fades” are his major themes.  To which Dylan responds, “That sounds about right.”

When Watson says it has never experienced love, Dylan tells the A.I. that “Maybe we should write a song together.”  Watson answers by demonstrating his singing skills.

Of course, the big question in the Pollstar universe is whether Dylan and Watson might embark on a tour together.  Although there’s been no hint of any future collaboration, a Dylan/Watson co-bill would definitely be another benchmark in his career.

Billionaire Donald Trump may be a frontrunner in the current race to become the Republican party’s nominee for president, but he’s not going to receive any support from singer Julio Iglesias anytime soon.

Of course, The Donald stirred up the political universe when he announced his candidacy and referred to undocumented Mexicans crossing the border into the U.S. as “rapists.”

Now Iglesias is weighing in on Trump’s anti-immigrant position.  While touring Mexico, Iglesias told the La Vanguardia newspaper that he won’t play any venue sporting the “Trump” name.

Photo: Michael Dwyer/AP
Smiling before receiving an honorary doctor of music degree from Berklee College of Music during commencement ceremonies in Boston.

“I’ve met Trump three or four times because I’ve played his places,” Iglesias told La Vanguardia, according to The New York Times.  “I think his brain and his heart are not connected right now.  It’s not correct, his position.”

Iglesias then announced his decision, saying, “I will never again play in his casinos.  I don’t want to hurt the immigrants all over the world, and there are many casinos I can play that aren’t owned by Mr. Trump.”

Never at a loss for words, Trump responded, saying, “Good, I don’t like his voice or his performances anymore, anyhow!”

Judas Priest’s northern California fans have probably already noticed that the metal band’s Oct. 21 concert at San Jose’s City National Civic is no longer on the schedule.

Promoter Nederlander announced that the show has been cancelled “due to venue scheduling conflicts.” 

The gig wasn’t going to be Judas Priest’s only Bay Area appearance.  The band is playing San Francisco’s Warfield Theatre Oct. 20.

Nederland’s statement says the company worked with the band on a sold-out 2014 show at the City National Civic and that “looks forward to bringing the band back to San Jose in the future.”

Photo: Adam Bielawski / AdamBielawski.com
Rock On The Range, MAPFRE Stadium, Columbus, Ohio

Refunds for the canceled San Jose show are available at points of purchase.