Tag Archives: 1969

My favourite bootleg from 1969: The Dylan / Cash sessions – Hallgeir

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My favourite bootleg from 1969:  The Dylan / Cash sessions

[Bob Dylan]…the greatest writer of our times
– Johnny Cash (introducing “Wanted Man” on the album “At San Quentin”)

“I was deeply into folk music in the early 1960s, both the authentic songs from various periods and areas of American life and the new ‘folk revival’ songs of the time, so I took note of Bob Dylan as soon as the Bob Dylan album came out in early ’62 and listened almost constantly to The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan in ’63. I had a portable record player I’d take along on the road, and I’d put on Freewheelin’ backstage, then go out and do my show, then listen again as soon as I came off.”
– Johnny Cash (Cash, autobiography)

..Johnny was and is the North Star; you could guide your ship by him – the greatest of the greats then and now. I first met him in ‘62 or ‘63 and saw him a lot in those years. Not so much recently, but in some kind of way he was with me more than people I see every day.
– Bob Dylan (Statement on Johnny Cash – Sept 2003)

“Of course, I knew of him before he ever heard of me, In ’55 or ’56. ‘I Walk the Line’ played all summer on the radio, and it was different than anything else you had ever heard. The record sounded like a voice from the middle of the Earth. It was so powerful and moving.”
– Bob Dylan

They recorded together at the CBS studios, Nashville, TN   February 17-18, 1969, and it resulted in my favourite Bob Dylan (and Johnny Cash bootleg from 1969), The Dylan / Cash Sessions. It was released in 1994 and re-released in 2004.

dylan cash versjon 2
2004 re-release

The background story goes something like this:

Johnny Cash wrote the young Bob Dylan a letter, and they began writing back and forth. They met at the 1964 Newport Folk Festival and Cash gave Bob Dylan his guitar (This is a Country Music Tradition and is seen as a gesture of great respect and admiration).

When Bob Dylan was in Nashville recording his ninth studio album, Nashville Skyline, Johnny Cash was recording in the next door studio. Cash joined Dylan at the end of the sessions. On February 17 and 18, 1969, Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan laid down 15 tracks (that we know of). Only one, Girl From the North Country, was included on Nashville Skyline.

This is a bootleg of historic significance and a great recording. It is a document of two giants recording together, and even if it’s a bit loose and “hit and miss”, it is a joy to listen to. It’s a must have.

Other entries in this series:
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 1962: The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan Outtakes
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 2011: Funen Village, Odense, Denmark June 27
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 2012: The Day of Wine and Roses, Barolo, Italy July 16

Continue reading My favourite bootleg from 1969: The Dylan / Cash sessions – Hallgeir

Feb 18: Bob Dylan’s 5th recording session for “Nashville Skyline” (w/Johnny Cash) in 1969

bob dylan nashville skyline

I like Johnny Cash a lot. I like everything he does really.
~Bob Dylan (to Nat Hentoff – Autumn 1965)

In the end, Nashville Skyline is a lovely album but not a heavyweight contender, though its effects were major ones. Country music was despised, hick music when Dylan took it up. People were divided into the hip and the non-hip. The counterculture was in full swing and riddled with its own self-importance and snobbery. Nashville Skyline was a hard pill to swallow: but it did ’em good.
~Michael Gray (Bob Dylan Encyclopedia)

The 5th recording session for ‘Nashville Skyline’ took place on February 18, 1969. One master versions emerged.. the lovely “Girl from the North Country”. Johnny Cash shared vocal on all 38 takes…this is a highly bootlegged sessions… and people have uploaded most of it on youtube… 

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picture of Johnny Cash & Bob Dylan.. NOT from the studio sessions

 

Some background from wikipedia:

Nashville Skyline is the ninth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in April 1969 by Columbia Records.

Building on the rustic style he experimented with on John Wesley HardingNashville Skyline displayed a complete immersion into country music. Along with the more basic lyrical themes, simple songwriting structures, and charming domestic feel, it introduced audiences to a radically new singing voice from Dylan—a soft, affected country croon.

The result received a generally positive reaction from critics, and was a commercial success. Reaching number 3 in the US, the album also scored Dylan his fourth UK number 1 album.

bob dylan nashville skyline back

Continue reading Feb 18: Bob Dylan’s 5th recording session for “Nashville Skyline” (w/Johnny Cash) in 1969

Feb 13: Bob Dylan – 2nd Nashville Skyline session in 1969

bob dylan nashville skyline

Well, Jann, I’ll tell you something. There’s not too much of a change in my singing style, but I’ll tell you something which is true… I stopped smoking. When I stopped smoking my voice changed… So drastically, I couldn’t believe it myself. That’s true. I tell you, you stop smoking those cigarettes (laughter)… and you’ll be able to sing like Caruso.
~Bob Dylan (to Jann Wenner Nov 1969)

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)

The first recording session for “Nashville Skyline” was held on February 12, 1969 – but no recordings sheets are available from this session. The second session took place the day after – February 13, 1969. Dylan landed 3 master versions this evening.

Continue reading Feb 13: Bob Dylan – 2nd Nashville Skyline session in 1969

October 10: The Kinks released Arthur or the decline and fall of the British Empire in 1969

kinks arthur

The Kinks released one of their best albums, Arthur (or the decline and fall of The British Empire) October 10 in 1969. It  is the seventh studio album by the band.  Ray Davies constructed the concept album as the soundtrack to a Granada Television play and developed the storyline with novelist Julian Mitchell; however, the television programme was cancelled and never produced. The rough plot revolved around Arthur Morgan, a carpet-layer, who was based on Ray Davies’ brother-in-law Arthur Anning.

It is a natural successor to The Village Green Preservation Society, but it is even more british in its tone and storyline.

The Kinks – Victoria (live France, 1979):

Continue reading October 10: The Kinks released Arthur or the decline and fall of the British Empire in 1969

September 26: The Beatles released Abbey Road in 1969

beatles abbey road

Released 26 September 1969
Recorded 22 February – 20 August 1969,EMI, Olympic and Trident Studios,London
Genre Rock
Length 47:23
Label Apple
Producer George Martin

Abbey Road is the 11th studio album released by the English rock band The Beatles. It is their last recorded album, although Let It Be was the last album released before the band’s dissolution in 1970. Work on Abbey Roadbegan in April 1969, and the album was released on 26 September 1969 in the United Kingdom, and 1 October 1969 in the United States.

Abbey Road is widely regarded as one of The Beatles’ most tightly constructed albums, although the band was barely operating as a functioning unit at the time. Despite the tensions within the band, Abbey Road was released to near universal acclaim and is considered to be one of the greatest albums of all time. In 2012, Abbey Road was voted 14th on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”. In 2009, readers of the magazine also named Abbey Road the greatest Beatles album.

Continue reading September 26: The Beatles released Abbey Road in 1969