Category Archives: Gospel

January 29: Jonny Lang was born in 1981 – Here playing Bob Dylan songs




Photo: Larry Philpot

Jonny Lang (born Jon Gordon Langseth, Jr.; January 29, 1981) is an American blues, gospel, and rock singer, songwriter, guitarist and recording artist. He has five albums that charted on the top 50 of the Billboard 200 chart and has won a Grammy Award for Turn Around.

Let us listen to a couple of his Dylan versions.
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Nina Simone sings Bob Dylan

to_be_free_the_nina_simone_story

Eunice Kathleen Waymon aka. Nina Simone was the sixth of eight children, she grew up in poverty in Tryon, North Carolina. Her family wished for her was that she should be the world’s finest classical pianist. She did  not get into the schools she wanted and always blamed racism.

Born the sixth child of a preacher’s family in North Carolina, Simone aspired to be a concert pianist. Her musical path changed direction after she was denied a scholarship to the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, despite a well-received audition. Simone was later told by someone working at Curtis that she was rejected because she was black. When she began playing in a small club in Philadelphia to fund her continuing musical education and become a classical pianist she was required to sing as well. She was approached for a recording by Bethlehem Records, and her rendering of “I Loves You, Porgy” was a hit in the United States in 1958. Over the length of her career Simone recorded more than 40 albums, mostly between 1958—when she made her debut with Little Girl Blue—and 1974.
– Wikipedia

Simone has dug deep into the american song tradition and it comes as no surprise that she has done several of Bob Dylan’s songs. She is an incredible interpreter of Dylan.

The first song is a contender for best Bob Dylan cover ever done (yes, I am aware of Hendrix’ Watchtower).

The Ballad of Hollis Brown(live,Mickery Theatre, The Netherlands in 1965, see coments…):

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Etta James sings Bob Dylan


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Etta James sings Bob Dylan

The great late Etta James would have been 77 years old today we celebrate her here at Alldylan by presenting her Bob Dylan interpretations. As far as I know there are only two. Gotta serve somebody is good but Blowing in the wind has a strangely artificial drum sound. Listen to it and make up your own minds.

Etta James – Gotta serve somebody:

Etta James – Blowing in the wind:

– Hallgeir

The Best Dylan Covers: Helen Baylor – What Can I Do For You?

helen baylor

What can I do for you? is a song by Bob Dylan from the album, Saved. Saved is the twentieth studio album by Dylan, released on June 23, 1980, by Columbia Records.

bob dylan saved

Helen Baylor (born January 8, 1953 as Helen LaRue Lowe) is an American gospel singer. She covered Dylan’s song for the Bob Dylan tribute album, Gotta Serve Somebody: The Gospel Songs of Bob Dylan

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10 Good cover versions of Bob Dylan’s Christian songs (edit)

Bob Dylan

10 Good cover versions of Bob Dylan’s Christian songs

I love the “Christian period” in Dylan’s career, always have. In the beginning I felt quite alone in my belief in Dylan, but now he is finally getting recognised for his faith-based songs. The Bob Dylan records from that period are so much better than the critics at the time wrote, they were simply too shocked by his conversion to see the beauty in the songs. I have to say that not all critics were harsh, some recognised quality.

And so what if he’s taken up with the God of Wrath? Since when have you been so crazy about the God of Love? Or any other species of hippie bullshit?
– Robert Christgau

First his live shows from these years got well deserved praise and now finally the albums. They might not be among his best by Dylan’s standard, but by anyone else’s they’re actually quite decent!

Bob Dylan Gospel 2

Here are evidence that the songs are solid Bob Dylan compositions. I have tried not to only include gospel choirs, there are a lot of performances I could have chosen, but instead I’ve tried to show how the songs work in different styles.

Enjoy!

I Believe In You – Sinead O’Connor

Such a presence, and the voice, man!

What can I do for you – Helen Baylor:

Good gospel/soul!
Continue reading 10 Good cover versions of Bob Dylan’s Christian songs (edit)