mjzee

Bob Dylan corner

858 posts in this topic

Some of you Dylanlogist certainly know about the 'Freewheelin' affair: first pressings with four different songs retired immediatly from Columbia. Do you know what was the correct sequence of songs in this Holy Graal of records collectionists?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Where? Each link to the image of the album including the withdrawn songs (under 1963) seems broken to me. Thanks.

Edited by It Should be You

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What's your favorite jazz cover of a Dylan tune? One that comes to mind is David "Fathead" Newman's version of "Just Like A Woman."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I'm in Starbucks today, and by the counter I saw a new compilation: Bob Dylan - Music That Matters To Him. If you know the series, it's music the artist picks out, that he likes to listen to. What an interesting selection:

Pee Wee Crayton - Do Unto Others

Clancy Eccles - Don't Brag, Don't Boast

Stanley Brothers with The Clinch Mountain Boys - The Fields Have Turned Brown

Gus Viseur - Flambee Montalbanaise (Valse)

Red Prysock - Hand Clappin'

Sol Hoopii & His Novelty Quartette - I Like You

Ray Price - I'll Be There (If You Ever Want Me)

Stuff Smith & His Onyx Club Boys - I'se a Muggin' (Part 2)

Charley Jordan - Keep It Clean

Junior Wells - Little by Little (I'm Losing You)

Patty & The Emblems - Mixed-Up, Shook-Up Girl

Getatchew Kassa - Tezeta (Fast)

Flaco Jimenez with Toby Torres & Jose Morante - Victimas del Huracan Beulah

Wanda Jackson - I Gotta Know

Billie Holiday & Her Orchestra - I Hear Music

Junior Parker - Pretty Baby

There are also great liner notes by Bob about the selections. I'll try to share some as I get more into it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hm, I must have missed this thread before... been a Dylan fan a few years before starting with jazz, and always kept loving his music. last night I caught "I'm Not There", finally (Cate Blanchett is terrific! The young boy is quite a treat, too... Gere is as lame as always, but he sort of fits in nicely... oh, and of course there's Charlotte Gainsbourg, too... drool...)

anyway, the 65/66 albums remain my most cherished, other favourites being Blood, Desire, John Wesley Harding, Love and Theft... but also New Morning, the Basement Tapes (I think I only have the official version, but I'll have to dig into all those Dylan boots I've downloaded in recent years), Time Out of Mind and Oh Mercy. One of the more astonishing things is that even on weak albums like that one ugly 80s thing, there's a very good song, like in that case the beautiful "Dark Eyes".

I'll have to replace my 80s CD of "Desire" - brings to mind I've never upgraded andy of those old Dylan CDs (I have most of them, except for Pat Garrett - seen the Peckinpah film though, good one -, Dylan, Self-Portrait, Street Legal and the other christian one... Slow Train I have and quite like, but it's not his "natural" sound, though it's a great sound, what with the memphis horns etc)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll have to replace my 80s CD of "Desire" - brings to mind I've never upgraded andy of those old Dylan CDs (I have most of them, except for Pat Garrett - seen the Peckinpah film though, good one -, Dylan, Self-Portrait, Street Legal and the other christian one... Slow Train I have and quite like, but it's not his "natural" sound, though it's a great sound, what with the memphis horns etc)

my girlfriend upgraded her copy of Blood on the Tracks and i vaguely remember being astonished ( :) ) by the difference (more than with any other such upgrade)... my favorite album is Desire, followed by Blonde on Blonde... (but i don't know all)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

this all comes up as I am trying to finish up my rock and roll history (1950-1970); here's one section on Dylan, who I do think ran out of ideas in about 1968 -

"In terms of repertoire Newport was Dylan at his best. A great deal of his talent has always been melodic, an odd thing given how anti-melodic his singing is purported to be. In truth he had a gift for creating simple but memorable blues-like songs, diatonically constructed with the occasional surprising, if very basic, chord change and the even more occasional violation of formal expectations. It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry, with its nicely inserted and altogether appropriate middle section, is a case in point. Dylan, whatever his stylistic quirks, always had a firm sense of where, technically, he wanted to go.

And that, ultimately, may be the source of his most satisfying music making. Ironically, given his folk-poet reputation and pretensions, the most salient characteristic of Dylan from this second period is not his lyric writing but his music, his absolute group fearlessness and willingness to open up his songs instrumentally. On albums like Highway 61 Revisited and than Blond on Blond (and than in his live appearances with The Band) there is an engaging sense of willful and not quite joyous, anarchy.

He was writing too many songs, and though there were some brilliant hooks, lyrically it showed; musically he was in the process of defining a new idiom, and making musical connections with as many logically-brilliant free associations as any jazz musician of the day. The jangling guitar lines, the phrase fills moving in and out of the front line, as though adjusting to the music’s constantly changing depth-of-field - all are part of his suddenly new musical m.o. When he tells Michael Bloomfield, at the session for Highway 61 Revisited that "I don't want any of that B.B. King shit," he means exactly what he says, to distance himself from the more conventional phraseology and methodology of the blues.

Newport was the clarion call of his arrival. This was his New Deal, and if one were inclined to make such apocalyptic pronouncements, that day (7/25/65) might be seen as the true start of modern rock and roll. It’s a somewhat oversimplified way of looking at things, but Dylan’s heresy was one true sign that musical boundaries in rock and roll were coming down, overrun and trampled by the new hordes; if anybody was really surprised, than they hadn't been paying enough attention. If Dylan’s prime motivation was to get more people to listen to him, to become the rock and roll star of his Minnesota fantasies, than more power to him. All eyes, which had been looking in his direction, were now focused solely on him, on what he would do next, what songs he would write and what kind of albums he would make. Always aware of the necessary hipness quotient, and conscious of how much of his elliptical pseudo-philosophy other people would or would not tolerate, he now became more and more personally insufferable. It mattered little that, in interviews and in the film that came out of his 1965 British tour, Don’t Look Back, he came across as narcissistic, shallow, and just plain nasty, because now he was the point of focus. The most astonishing thing was, given how repulsive and obnoxious his filmed behavior was, that he let it out for the public to see. Like some fame-hungry figure in a Frederick Wiseman film he seemed less concerned about why he was the center of attention than the simple fact that he was.

The practice of songwriting was a different matter, and of major importance to his growing myth. Though he always tended, in his lyric writing, to alternate insight with preciousness his writing now, more than ever, had the burden of meaning, much as he might disavow such claims. He was the new seer of rock and roll, and his voice could be heard in just about every prominent group, from the Beatles to the Rolling Stones to Simon and Garfunkel. Under pressure of deadline, to get out one song after another and assemble his albums, he began to indulge, more than ever before, his tendency for glib poesy, for words and phrases that had little reason for being beyond pseudo-symbolist fantasy. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn’t; language for its own sake was a legitimate technique for the songwriter, but Dylan’s language was often as not clumsy and awkward. In this scheme of things it was OK to rhyme heat pipes that "cough" with a radio station playing "soft", (Visions of Johanna) as long as the audience was with you, as, with Dylan after Newport, it was. On in-person recordings from tours made in the middle 1960s Dylan is like a king at court before his subjects, condescendingly tolerant and arrogant at the same time, the most elite of the anti-elitists and very conscious of the natural privileges of power. Everything and everyone else, from Woody Guthrie to old roommates like Mark Spoelstra and Dave Van Ronk, was now, in more ways than one, in the past. Unlike the old Dylan, exhumator of and grand re-designer of the folk tradition, the new Dylan was his own self-contained model, his own and sole source of history and tradition."

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll have to replace my 80s CD of "Desire" - brings to mind I've never upgraded andy of those old Dylan CDs (I have most of them, except for Pat Garrett - seen the Peckinpah film though, good one -, Dylan, Self-Portrait, Street Legal and the other christian one... Slow Train I have and quite like, but it's not his "natural" sound, though it's a great sound, what with the memphis horns etc)

my girlfriend upgraded her copy of Blood on the Tracks and i vaguely remember being astonished ( :) ) by the difference (more than with any other such upgrade)... my favorite album is Desire, followed by Blonde on Blonde... (but i don't know all)

thanks, so I might consider upgrading blonde on blonde, blood, bringing it back/subterrenean homesick blues (or what's the bloody title again?) and also finally getting my own copy of highway 61, I've held my dad's hostage for years now... also john wesley harding... hm, will have to think this over, but desire has a few songs great enough for me to replace my scratched CD fast!

oh, knocked out loaded and down in the groove are two more I don't own - how about them?

saw him live three times, last time was fairly recent (I think that was that april tour someone mentioned here, with no opening act), first time in 1990 I think... my first rock/pop/whatever non-classical concert...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

this all comes up as I am trying to finish up my rock and roll history (1950-1970); here's one section on Dylan, who I do think ran out of ideas in about 1968...

thank you very much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey Allen, thanks for the excerpt.

I think he ran out of ideas later, Blood on the Tracks was the last one that I thought was really innovative.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey Allen, thanks for the excerpt.

I think he ran out of ideas later, Blood on the Tracks was the last one that I thought was really innovative.

yes, same here - and as I said, I do like "Desire" a lot, too, though I'd not consider it innovative or anything... I can sort of see 1968 as kind of end of a period or something... "New Morning" was nice, too, but nothing big, "Planet Waves" again though is highly enjoyable... the Peckinpah soundtrack, well... too bad everyone had to cover Knockin' on Heaven's door, it's not *that* bad, really... and the Nashville album... a very mixed bunch what he did in 70-75! Definitely as a whole not on the level of say 1964-68.

Still have to read your piece, Allen, but thanks for putting it up here!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally I love Planet Waves, if I had to grab just one Dylan album it would probably be that one for possibly sentimental reasons, but I think he developed a narrative style and flow at this time that was an innovation for his music. I could be wrong, I just love this one and Blood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allen,

Thanx muchly for the interesting excerpt, which I might paraphrase as 'if you're going to be unpleasant you'd better be brilliant, and he was (both).' But, before it goes to print please correct the v. distracting misuse of "than" for "then", it's a small thing but a pet peeve of mine...

Looking forward to it,

Dana

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allen--I agree with you that he ran out of ideas in 1968. To me, after that he was a professional recording artist, fufilling his contractual requirements for albums. He had enough talent that an occasional good song or performance surfaced, but most of his post-1968 output is product, not nearly as good or inspired as his pre-1969 material.

In that he is not unique. The same thing happened to Paul McCartney, for example. The difference to me is that Dylan has attracted a group of admirers who insist that virtually everything he has ever done is genius. Few people would say that about McCartney, or any of the other rock performers who had a creative period and then just played out the string.

There seems to be an industry which has grown up around the idea that everything that Dylan has ever done is genius, with countless books published about him especially. Except for the Grateful Dead, there must be no rock performer with as many books published about him, as Dylan in the past 10 years.

Edited by Hot Ptah

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"print please correct the v. distracting misuse of "than" for "then", it's a small thing but a pet peeve of mine..."

to you and everybody else - look, I'll a print a few below and you can make the changes yourself - I find it too confusing -

than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then than then than then than then then then then then than than than than than then than then

email me if you need any more -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What's your favorite jazz cover of a Dylan tune? One that comes to mind is David "Fathead" Newman's version of "Just Like A Woman."

I rather like Joan Osborne's version of "Man in the Long Black Coat" and PJ Harvey's "Highway 61"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is how Bob introduced the Starbucks collection:

When I was asked to put together this collection of songs, I wasn't sure what to do. So I just grabbed a bunch of things I was into recently. Some people have favorite songs, but I've got songs of the minute - songs that I'm listening to right now. And if you ask me about one of those songs a year from now, I might not even remember who did it, but at the moment it's everything to me. There're a lot of different ways a record can get under your skin. Sometimes it's the way they sound, sometimes it's the words. Maybe it's a guitar riff or horn line or maybe you feel like the singer is talking right to you. Some people say it's chemistry but chemistry is too much of a science. A great record is more like alchemy. Here's a bunch of folks who somehow managed to turn lead into gold for a couple of minutes. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

good, typical Dylan quote - sounds like a Cecil Taylor interview - smart and annoying at the same time -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

good, typical Dylan quote - sounds like a Cecil Taylor interview - smart and annoying at the same time -

Two gentlemen who seem to have a shared distaste/contempt for the media. Not a bad thing to share. :cool:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked his description of the Gus Viseur tune:

Gus Viseur was an accordion player who played musette, a kind of French cafe music... had a little bit of a Gypsy sound, a little bit of jazz. Probably the most famous example would be a guy like Django Reinhardt, who crossed over a little more into swing jazz. But there's a whole bunch of guys like Gus Viseur, Jo Privat and Vetese Guerino. The great thing about music is that when you hear it, even if you don't have a dime in your pocket, you can travel all over the world. Whenever I hear a song like this, it doesn't matter where I am or what the weather is like. Suddenly I'm on a rain-soaked street in France underneath an awning drinking an espresso noir with a beautiful raven-haired Parisian.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allen--I agree with you that he ran out of ideas in 1968. To me, after that he was a professional recording artist, fufilling his contractual requirements for albums. He had enough talent that an occasional good song or performance surfaced, but most of his post-1968 output is product, not nearly as good or inspired as his pre-1969 material.

It would be impossible for somebody to sustain the body of work he did in the sixties but I have disagree that there weren't any albums post 1969 that don't stand up with what came before.

fwiw my top five Dylan records in order are:

Highway 61

Blood On The Tracks (74, 75?)

Bringing It All Back Home

Blond On Blond

Love and Theft (2001)

Yes while his voice is shot on Love and Theft the songs are fantastic and the band is exceptional. Track down a bootleg of the acoustic sessions of Blood On The Tracks, it equals or surpasses the official release and contains Up To Me which should have made Blood. I know a lot of people that consider Blood to be his best and I can't make a argument against.

I am not the biggest fan of Desire but the live release from the Rolling Thunder tour stands up with his best work in my opinion as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.