Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Bob Dylan - Many Happy Returns

No self-respecting music blog of whatever genre persuasion can let the 70th anniversary of the birth of one Robert Zimmerman go by unremarked. The man has spent a lifetime railing against "The Man" in all his many insidious guises, while at the same time defying his critics, constantly surprising and sometimes alienating his fans, all with that famous whine. Jimi Hendrix was ashamed of his own lack of vocal prowess until he heard and fell in love with His Bobness' nasal whine, not to mention his songs. If he can get away with it, then so can I he must have thought.

But Bob's voice was transcended by his songwriting which highlighted a fierce intelligence and a constantly questioning spirit all with a poet's sensibility. Remember he was doing this kind of thing when The Beatles where singing Hard Day's Night, Drive My Car, Paperback Writer. Only a fool would deny his crucial importance in progressing pop music to an altogether more political level, in both the personal and wider sense.

Blimey, this is beginning to read like an obituary, but, as with most of the 60s musicians still working his best days are a loonnng time ago - stand up The Strolling Bones - but he will undoubtedly be remembered long after the likes of Lady Gaga are consigned to the passing fads of history.

A list:

Fave Dylan song - Isis
Fave Dylan album - Blood On The Tracks
Best Dylan Cover - All Along The Watchtower - The Jimi Hendrix Experience (yeah, I know it's a bit obvious, but hey, that's what I reckon)


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