Tag Archives: Gerde’s Folk City

September 29: Bob Dylan at Gerde’s Folk City profile in the New York Times 1961

Dylan NYT Gerdes

“He was a cross between a choir boy and a beatnik, a 20-year-old  with a voice , anything but pretty”
– Robert Shelton

Robert Shelton helped start Mr. Dylan’s career with his Sept. 29, 1961, profile.

Robert Shelton
, born Robert Shapiro (June 28, 1926, Chicago, Illinois, United States – December 11, 1995, Brighton, England) was a music and film critic. Shelton was perhaps most notable for the way in which he helped to launch the career of a then unknown 20-year-old folk singer named Bob Dylan. In 1961, Dylan was performing atGerdes Folk City in the West Village, one of the best-known folk venues in New York, opening for a bluegrass act called the Greenbriar Boys. Shelton’s positive review, in The New York Times, brought crucial publicity to Dylan, and led to a Columbia recording contract.

Robert Shelton’s review was the start of a proffesional relationship with Bob Dylan, and he wrote the liner notes to the album, Bob Dylan. Dylan also lent Shelton’s apartement to have a place to write.

He is  the writer of the book, No Direction Home – The Life and Music of Bob Dylan:bobdylannodirectionhomethelifeand550760

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