Anyway, on Nashville Skyline you had to read between the lines. I was trying to grasp something that would lead me on to where I thought I should be, and it didn’t go nowhere – it just went down, down, down.
~Bob Dylan (to Jonathan Cott, Sept 1978)
Feb 13, 1961
Dylan turns up at Gerdes Folk City with his birth certificate and gets to play. It is very likely that he now starts to play every Monday night at the Gerdes hootenannies, until Porco finally books him for a paying gig.
~Clinton Heylin (Bob Dylan: A Life in Stolen Moments Day by Day 1941-1995)
Jack Kerouac published his book, On The Road in 1957
“I read On the Road in maybe 1959. It changed my life like it changed everyone else’s” – Bob Dylan
On the Road is a novel by American writer Jack Kerouac, based on the travels of Kerouac and his friends across America. It is considered a defining work of the postwar Beat and Counterculture generations, with its protagonists living life against a backdrop of jazz, poetry, and drug use. The novel, published in 1957, is a roman à clef, with many key figures in the Beat movement, such as William S. Burroughs (Old Bull Lee) and Allen Ginsberg (Carlo Marx) represented by characters in the book, including Kerouac himself as the narrator Sal Paradise.
Ginsberg and Dylan visiting Kerouac’s grave:
“It was Jack Kerouac, Ginsberg, Corso, Felinghetti , I got in at the tail end of that and it was magic. It had just as big an impact on me as Elvis Presley.”
– Bob Dylan (1985)
“I was amazed when I heard a taped interview with a 15-year-old girl, who was waiting to get into one of my concerts. She said how she digs William Blake and a bunch of others that no one else has read. She was really hip and more free in mind than most of these 22-year-old college kids.” – Bob Dylan (Sep 4th, 1965)
Hollywood Press Conference of September 4th, 1965:
Bob Dylan announces that his new book Tarantula will be, a book of words, at a one hour press conference held together with David Crosby (plus a woman without shoes! and a man from the record company) at the Beverly Hills Hotel, the day after the Hollywood Bowl concert. Bob Dylan again played word-games with the press.