Category Archives: Bob Dylan

Today: Bob Dylan released Together Through Life in 2009 – 4 years ago

bob dylan Together Through Life

…Sure, I try to stick to the rules. Sometimes I might shift paradigms within the same song, but then that structure also has its own rules. And I combine them both, see what works and what doesn’t. My range is limited. Some formulas are too complex and I don’t want anything to do with them.
~Bob Dylan (to Bill Flanagan, in 2009)

“Dylan, who turns 68 in May, has never sounded as ravaged, pissed off and lusty”
~David Fricke (rollingstone.com)

bob dylan Together Through Life back

Together Through Life is an album that gets its hooks in early and refuses to let go. It’s dark yet comforting, with a big tough sound, booming slightly like a band grooving at a soundcheck in an empty theatre. And at its heart there is a haunting refrain. Because above everything this is a record about love, its absence and its remembrance.
~Danny Eccleston (mojo4music.com)

Beyond Here Lies Nothin’

I’m listening to Billy Joe Shaver
And I’m reading James Joyce
Some people they tell me
I got the blood of the land in my voice
~Bob Dylan (I Feel A Change Comin’ On)

Wikipedia:

Released April 28, 2009
Recorded December 2008
Genre Folk rock, blues rock, Americana
Length 45:33
Language English
Label Columbia
Producer Jack Frost (Bob Dylan pseudonym)

Together Through Life is the thirty-third studio album by singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in April 2009 by Columbia Records. The album debuted at number one in several countries, including the U.S.  and the UK. It is Dylan’s first number one in Britain since New Morning in 1970.

Dylan wrote all but one of the album’s songs with Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter, with whom he had previously co-written two songs on his 1988 album Down in the Groove. In an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Dylan commented on the collaboration:

“Hunter is an old buddy, we could probably write a hundred songs together if we thought it was important or the right reasons were there… He’s got a way with words and I do too. We both write a different type of song than what passes today for songwriting.”

The only other writer Dylan has ever collaborated with to such a degree is Jacques Levy, with whom he wrote most of the songs on Desire (1976).

bob dylan Together Through Life inlay

Rumors of the album, reported in Rolling Stone magazine, came as a surprise, with no official press release until March 16, 2009 — less than two months before the album’s release date. Dylan produced the record under his pseudonym of Jack Frost, which he used for his previous two studio albums, “Love and Theft” and Modern Times. The album was rumored to contain “struggling love songs” and have little similarity to Modern Times.

In a conversation with music journalist Bill Flanagan, published on Bob Dylan’s official website, Flanagan suggested a similarity of the new record to the sound of Chess Records and Sun Records, which Dylan acknowledged as an effect of “the way the instruments were played.” He said that the genesis of the record was when French film director Olivier Dahan asked him to supply a song for his new road movie, My Own Love Song, which became “Life is Hard” – indeed, ‘according to Dylan, Dahan was keen to get a whole soundtrack’s worth of songs from the man’ – and “then the record sort of took its own direction.” 

Beyond Here Lies Nothin’ live 2011 Tucson, AZ:

Dylan is backed on the album by his regular touring band, plus David Hidalgo of Los Lobos and Mike Campbell of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Dylan commented on Campbell’s guitar work in his interview with Flanagan: “He’s good with me. He’s been playing with Tom for so long that he hears everything from a songwriter’s point of view and he can play most any style.”

In the interview with Bill Flanagan, Dylan discusses the only known outtake to “Together Through Life”, “Chicago After Dark”. Apparently, this song was in the running to be on the album but was left off the final version, as Flanagan talks about the song as if it is on the album. The song is not circulating among collectors.

“Bill Flanagan: In that song CHICAGO AFTER DARK, were you thinking about the new President?

Bob: Not really. It’s more about State Street and the wind off Lake Michigan and how sometimes we know people and we are no longer what we used to be to them. I was trying to go with some old time feeling that I had.”

Described at length in a 2009 interview to promote the album Together Through Life, according to Dylan, it’s about “how sometimes we know people and we are no longer what we used to be to them”. In fact, this song never existed.He made it all up. How fitting.
~Clinton Heylin (telegraph.co.uk)

Forgetful Heart, Memphis, 2011:

  • The album received two Grammy Award nominations in Best Americana Album category and “Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance” category for “Beyond Here Lies Nothin'”.
  • The album also is significant as the only album by Dylan to top the US and UK charts consecutively.
  • The album’s cover photo is the same as that on the cover of American author Larry Brown’s short story collection, Big Bad Love.

Track listing:

  1. “Beyond Here Lies Nothin'” 3:51
  2. “Life Is Hard” 3:39
  3. “My Wife’s Home Town” (Willie Dixon, Dylan, Hunter) 4:15
  4. “If You Ever Go to Houston” 5:49
  5. “Forgetful Heart” 3:42
  6. “Jolene” 3:51
  7. “This Dream of You” (Dylan) 5:54
  8. “Shake Shake Mama” 3:37
  9. “I Feel a Change Comin’ On” 5:25
  10. “It’s All Good” 5:28

My ratings (0-10):

  • I Feel a Change Comin’ On – 9
  • Beyond Here Lies Nothin’ – 8,5
  • Shake Shake Mama – 8
  • My Wife’s Home Town – 7
  • If You Ever Go to Houston – 7
  • Forgetful Heart- 7
  • This Dream of You – 7
  • It’s All Good – 6,5
  • Life is Hard – 6,5
  • Jolene – 6

Personnel:

  • Bob Dylan – guitar, keyboards, vocals, production
Additional musicians
  • Mike Campbell – guitar, mandolin
  • Tony Garnier – bass guitar
  • Donnie Herron – steel guitar, banjo, mandolin, trumpet
  • David Hidalgo – accordion, guitar
  • George Recile – drums
Technical personnel
  • David Bianco – recording, mixing
  • Eddy Schreyer – mastering
  • Bill Lane – assistant engineering
  • Rafael Serrano – engineering
  • David Spreng – engineering
  • Rich Tosti – assistant engineering

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Today – Bob Dylan – 15th Infidels recording session in 1983 – 30 years ago

infidels

…..I did the album, and I call it that, but what it means is for other people to interpret, you know, if it means something to them. Infidels is a word that’s in the dictionary and whoever it applies to… to everybody on the album, every character. Maybe it’s all about infidels.
~Bob Dylan (to Kurt Loder in March 1984)

Foot of Pride:

 “Bob’s musical ability is limited, in terms of being able to play a guitar or a piano,….. It’s rudimentary, but it doesn’t affect his variety, his sense of melody, his singing. It’s all there. In fact, some of the things he plays on piano while he’s singing are lovely, even though they’re rudimentary. That all demonstrates the fact that you don’t have to be a great technician. It’s the same old story: If something is played with soul, that’s what’s important.
~Mark Knopfler

“I’ve made shoes for everyone, even you, while I still go barefoot”
~Bob Dylan (from “I and I”)

Studio A
Power Station
New York City, New York
27 April 1983

Produced by Mark Knopfler and Bob Dylan

  1. From Paul
  2. Foot Of Pride
  3. Foot Of Pride
  4. Foot Of Pride
  5. Foot Of Pride
    ….Composing it was alright, it probably had a bunch of extra verses that probably… most likely weren’t necessary, they should have been… they should have been combined. But, the reason why it was never used was because the tempo speeded up, but there wasn’t any drum machine used on that, the tempo just automatically took off, for some vague and curious reason.
    ~Bob Dylan (to Eliot Mintz – March 1991)

    Foot of pride is in fact, in the words Dylan used to describe the composition “Like A Rolling Stone,” “a long piece of vomit”. … it’s about how pride destroys us and turns us into monsters.
    ~Paul Williams (BD performing artist 1974-86)
  6. Union Sundown
  7. Union Sundown
  8. (Unidentified Song)
  9. (Harmonica)
  10. (Unidentified Song)
  11. I And I
  12. I And I
  13. I And I
  14. I And I
  15. I And I
  16. I And I
    …according to author/critic Tim Riley, “updates the Dylan mythos. Even though it substitutes self-pity for the [pessimism found throughout Infidels], you can’t ignore it as a Dylan spyglass: ‘Someone else is speakin’ with my mouth, but I’m listening only to my heart/I’ve made shoes for everyone, even you, while I still go barefoot.'” Riley sees the song as an exploration of the distance between Dylan’s “inner identity and the public face he wears”.
    ~Wikipedia

    “I and I”, the other epic from these sessions, is a beautiful song, powerfully sung, with a wonderfully moody and evocative instrumental setting….
    ~Paul Williams (BD perfroming artist 1974-86) 
  17. I And I
  18. I And I
  19. I And I
  20. Julius And Ethel
  21. Julius And Ethel

infidels back

Musicians:

  • Bob Dylan (vocal, harmonica, keyboards & guitar)
  • Mark Knopfler (guitar)
  • Mick Taylor (guitar)
  • Alan Clark (keyboards)
  • Robbie Shakespeare (bass)
  • Sly Dunbar (drums)

6, 7, 20, 21 Clydie King (backing/shared vocal)

Related articles here @ JV:

References:

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My Morning Jacket to tour with Bob Dylan – here covering his songs

 

Jim James announced some exclusive news during a video interview with Tap Milwaukee Thursday night: My Morning Jacket will be on the road with Bob Dylan this summer.

My Morning Jackets has a long relationship with Dylan’s songs and it will be great to be able to see them on the same bill.

Bob Dylan’s songs have become part of the great American songbook and there are a lot of artists covering his compositions. My Morning Jacket is one of the best and most interesting of the contemporary bands around, and their covers of Dylan are all good, some are great.

In honor of Amnesty International’s 50th anniversary, a number of musical heavyweights came together for a new Bob Dylan cover album.  Chimes of Freedom: Songs of Bob Dylan Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International had a wonderful cover of  “You’re a Big Girl Now” done by My Morning Jacket.


This made me check around to see if My Morning Jacket had done more songs by Dylan and they had.

Continue reading My Morning Jacket to tour with Bob Dylan – here covering his songs

Video of the day: Bob Dylan plays Muddy Waters

Dylan_waters___blues

Muddy Waters was born 101 years ago today, we celebrate this on JV today by dedicating todays video to Muddy Waters.

Here is Bob Dylan singing the famous Hoochie Coochie Man (written by Willie Dixon and first recorded by Muddy Waters):

Hoochie Coochie Man” (sometimes referred to as “(I’m Your) Hoochie Coochie Man“) is a blues standard written by Willie Dixon and first recorded by Muddy Waters in 1954 in Chicago. The song was a major hit upon its release, reaching #8 on Billboard magazine’s Black Singles chart. The intro and verse to Muddy Water’s version feature stop-time while the chorus features a refrain. According to an account by Dave Van Ronk, Muddy Waters stated that the song is supposed to have a comic effect. (Wikipedia)

Waters Dylan

– Hallgeir

Bob Dylan’s best songs – It Ain’t Me Babe – #46

bob dylan 1964

You know,  It Ain’t Me Babe was on the radio the other day and it never really occurred to me how different it was as a hit to how it was in my repertoire.
~Bob Dylan (to Adrian Deevoy, Oct 1989)

Save for a faux-reggae arrangement ten years on—one of the absolute highlights of the Renaldo and Clara film—the song has usually relied on the sparsest of acoustic accompaniments in live performance, often serving as a set closer, which tempts one to suggest it addresses the audience—specifically that element that wants the man to stay the same. That ain’t him.
~Clinton Heylin (Revolution in the air)

#46 on my list of Dylan’s 200 best songs. Recorded on June 9th, 1964 @ Columbia Studios – NYC. This was the one & only recording session for “Another Side of Bob Dylan”

Bob_Dylan_-_Another_Side_Of_Bob_Dylan

It Ain’t Me Babe” is a song by Bob Dylan that originally appeared on his fourth album Another Side of Bob Dylan, which was released in 1964 by Columbia Records. The song, along with others on the album, marked a departure for Dylan as he began to explore the possibilities of language and deeper levels of the human experience. Within a year of its release, the song was picked up as a single by artists who were forging the folk rock movement, including The Turtles and The Byrds.
Wikipedia

Go ’way from my window
Leave at your own chosen speed
I’m not the one you want, babe
I’m not the one you need

Spotify:

Continue reading Bob Dylan’s best songs – It Ain’t Me Babe – #46