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)
Released 49 years ago, it surely is one of his most controversial albums.. “Embracing” classic Country music & kicking off the “Country Rock” genre.
I’ve always liked this album… not a masterpiece, but a solid Dylan album.
#1 – Girl from the North Country (with Johnny Cash)
Continue reading April 9: Bob Dylan Released Nashville Skyline in 1969 →
Well, if you’re travelin’ in the north country fair
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine
Who was Bob Dylan thinking of when he wrote and then recorded “Girl from the North Country”? Maybe Echo Helstrom, who had been his girlfriend when he lived in Hibbing. Or perhaps Bonnie Beecher, whom he had also met in Minneapolis, and whom he kept on seeing after he settled in Greenwich Village. But it is more likely his erstwhile girlfriend, Suze Rotolo. Suze had gone to Italy to pursue her studies, leaving Dylan in deep distress. Dylan put the final touches on this superb ballad during his trip to Perugia.
– Margotin, Philippe; Guesdon, Jean-Michel. Bob Dylan All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Track
Bob Dylan has played this wonderful song 546 times live, here are 6 great performances.
Continue reading Bob Dylan: 5 Great Live Versions of “Girl From The North Country” →
“Amazing” is the only way to describe the sound quality and the performance on the two nights at Philly’s ‘Theater of Living Arts’. The vocals are powerful, crisp, and way out front. The drums are fat and warm, and the instruments blend to a studio quality perfection. Two highlights are the 8 minute acoustic versions of Tambourine Man and Visions Of Johanna that are as soft and pretty as you’ll hear. The simple, but tasteful aesthetics of the package belie the jaw dropping experience the listener will soon find themselves immersed in. The back lists the tracks, venue and personnel. One of the many highlights of a great tour. The only thing to even remotely fault this great package with is the spelling of ‘Peddler’
Theater Of Living Arts
21 & 22 June 1995
- Bob Dylan (vocal & guitar)
- Bucky Baxter (pedal steel guitar & electric slide guitar)
- John Jackson (guitar)
- Tony Garnier (bass)
- Winston Watson (drums & percussion)
Continue reading June 21: Bob Dylan in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – 1995 (audio) →
Freewheelin’ in it’s released form is essentially a “best of” from one of the most creative years in Dylan’s life. The lag between sessions resulted in an album whose sound metamorphosed at least twice.
~Clinton Heylin (BD – The Recording Sessions)
Dylan nailed 5 master versions for “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” @ this important recording session.
Continue reading April 24: Bob Dylan: The 8th and last Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan session 1963 →