“I still say that some of the biggest criminals are those that turn their heads away when they see wrong and know it’s wrong. I’m only 21 years old and I know that there’s been too many wars… You people over 21 should know better. The first way to answer these questions in the song is by asking them. But lots of people have to first find the wind.”
~Bob Dylan (The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan Liner Notes – 1963)
The version of “Blowin’ in the Wind” that eventually appeared on The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan was recorded at this July 9 session. Of all the available performances of this song from 1962 and 1963, this “official” recording is my favorite. It has a presence, a magic, as if Dylan took a deep breath and thought, “Okay, this one’s for posterity.” I don’t think Dylan ever put quite as much of himself into the song again. He didn’t have to. The song itself was in the wind at that point.
~Paul Williams (Bob Dylan: Performing Artist 1960-1973 The Early Years)
Bob Dylan first performed Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ on July 8, 1988 at the Forum de
Montréal in Canada. Montréal is Cohen’s home town and it is possible that he attended the show.
Dylan’s second and final performance, on his “Interstate 88” tour, was on August 4, 1988, at the
final night of a three show residency at the Greek Theatre, Hollywood.
Dylan and Leonard Cohen first met sometime in the late ’60s and have remained friends ever
since, meeting whenever the opportunity arises. One such occasion was after a concert in Paris,
probably Dylan’s October 7, 1987 show at P.O.P.B. Bercy. The two songwriters spent some
considerable time talking shop, over coffee, in a café somewhere in the 14th Arrondissment of
Paris. Dylan told Cohen that he especially liked the ending to his then new song ‘Hallelujah’.
“And even though it all went wrong / I’ll stand before the Lord of Song with nothing on
my tongue but hallelujah!”
~Derek Barker (The Songs He didn’t write)
Baby I have been here before
I know this room, I’ve walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you.
I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah
“If I’ve got any kind of attitude about me — or about what I do, what I perform, what I sing, on any level, my attitude is, compare it to somebody else! Don’t compare it to me. Are you going to compare Neil Young to Neil Young? Compare it to somebody else, compare it to Beck—which I like—or whoever else is on his level.
~Bob Dylan (to Jonathan Lethem, Aug 2006)
Beck turns 49 today – Happy Birthday.
Here are two Dylan songs he’s covered: Leopard Skin Pill-box Hat & Country Pie.
..Dylan, who is interviewed backstage at Wembley by Martha Quinn for MTV. The interview lasts over half an hour. Dylan is extremely talkative, discussing such matters as his early days at the Cafe Wha, the recording of Infidels, and his attitude toward videos. MTV broadcasts very little of the interview. At the end of the interview, Dylan tells Quinn that she asked some really good questions.
~Clinton Heylin (Bob Dylan: A Life in Stolen Moments Day by Day 1941-1995)
Martha Quinn: Will this tour help you reach a new generation? Bob Dylan: I don’t reach anybody. They find me. They find me. It’s not for me to go out and reach somebody. If they can find me, they find me, and if they don’t, they don’t. That’s the way it’s always been. I don’t think it’s gonna change now just because I’m such an old man and it’s nineteen-eighty… what is it?
7 July 1984
Martha Quinn interview for MTV,
Wembley Stadium backstage, London, England