Posts Tagged ‘bob dylan’

In 1998, Wilco collaborated with Billy Bragg to release a two album series performing American folk singer, Woody Guthrie’s previously unheard lyrics. The project was organized by Guthrie’s daughter, Nora Guthrie.

The album was entitled “Mermaid Avenue” after the street in Coney Island, New York on which Guthrie lived. It was said by Guthrie’s daughter that the lyrics were intended to be performed and shared with a later generation. Since Bragg had recently performed a Guthrie tribute concert in New York City’s Central Park, it made sense for Nora to reach out to him about composing music to her father’s lyrics for release. Bragg then approached Wilco, asking them to participate as well.

Interestingly enough, Wilco wasn’t the first to know about the unreleased music. Bob Dylan used to visit Woody Guthrie in the mental hospital where he was located during the final years of his life. In one of these visits, Guthrie had told Bob Dylan where the unreleased music was located in his house, and that he could use them and perform them. When Bob Dylan went to Guthrie’s old house however, he was turned away at the door, as the family didn’t know of any unreleased music.

Mermaid Avenue

Advertisements

“I think you will find when your death takes its toll, all the money you made will never buy back your soul.”

Bob Dylan

Jake Bugg

I hear people say how badly they would have loved to be alive for the music revolution of the 60s almost every day, and I suppose I’m victim to this statement as well. There’s a lot of great music in the modern age, but classic rock ‘n’ roll and folk music seem to have taken a hiatus the past decade or so. After hearing Jake Bugg’s debut album, I’m happy to say that the hiatus is over.

Jake Bugg channels his inner Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan vocally, Johnny Cash musically, Simon & Garfunkel harmonically, and even pulls in influence from bands like The Beatles and Nirvana as well as artists like Buddy Holly and Hank Williams. In other words, all the great music we listen to when we want to be transported to another time is back, and stronger than ever.

At only 18 years old the time of recording, Jake Bugg’s debut album instantly makes you feel as though you’re in the 1950s listening to your record player, while the Ed Sullivan show plays in the background.

The record starts off with the biggest single from the album, “Lightening Bolt”, which inhabits the “scratchiness” of an old vinyl record and even portrays a hint of skiffle music, popular in England during 1956-57. The upbeat tune is then followed by “Two Fingers”, which was not only recorded in Liverpool (home of The Beatles), but even has a drum beat noticeably influenced by Ringo. “Country Song” reminds me especially of Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”, with its simplistic yet meaningful lyrics, and heart-wrenching guitar.

“Ballad of Mr. Jones” is a song full of storytelling and incredible imagery, similar to early pieces by Bob Dylan (which is ironic considering Dylan uses the name “Mr. Jones” in one of his songs as well). It feels like Bugg took one of Bob Dylan’s stories and put them to Nirvana music.  The album closes with the song “Fire”; a song so reminiscent of classic country-folk music, I had to go back and check to see if it was a cover.

Overall, I was extremely impressed by Jake Bugg’s debut album, and at such a young age, I’m hoping to see a lot more great things to come from him. So turn off the lights, press play, and be transported back to a much simpler time; you won’t regret it.

Our hearts go out to anyone in the Boston area today and to the friends and family of those hurt during today’s tragedies.

Bob Dylan - The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan

Artist: Bob Dylan
Album: The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan
Song: Blowin’ in the Wind
Genre: Folk

“Like the red rose of Summer that blooms in the day, time passes slowly, then fades away.”

Bob Dylan - New Morning

Almost everyone has heard the name “Big Pink” in the world of music at some point or another. Some know the name from The Band’s first album, “Music From Big Pink”. Others have heard the name from the London electronic-rock duo, “The Big Pink”. But what’s the source of this name? Well, as most things do, it all leads back to Bob Dylan.

The Band (originally The Hawks) got their start playing for Bob Dylan. Following Dylan’s famous motorcycle crash during the Summer of ’66, Bob Dylan needed to get away from the pressures of the label, his manager, and all his fans that felt betrayed by his going electric. He and The Band decided to break away from everything and seclude themselves in a house (that happened to be pink) being rented by Rick Danko from The Band, in West Saugerties, New York in 1967.

It was in this house that Bob Dylan and The Band recorded “The Basement Tapes” (released in 1975). Working so closely with Dylan inspired The Band to put out their own record, which became one of the most memorable albums of the 60s.

Big Pink

“I’m wearing the cloak of misery, and I’ve tasted jilted love. And the frozen smile upon my face fits me like a glove.”

Bob Dylan

“Some will rob you with a six-gun, and some with a fountain pen.”

Woody Guthrie

*Fun Fact: Bob Dylan references this quote in his song “Talkin’ New York” with the line “Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen. It don’t take too long to find out just what he was talking about.”