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WIGGLE WIGGLE: A BEDTIME STORY
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WIGGLE WIGGLE: A BEDTIME STORY

           Ok, let’s be honest, folks. There are times when being a Bob Dylan fan is what you might call ‘challenging’….All the tired horses in the sun…. Mmmm… They Killed Him with an ‘angelic’ children’s choir….O Little Town of Bethlehem… well, yes… The bit in We Are the World where Stevie Wonder has to...

RAISE THOSE LAUGHING EYES:  SPANISH IS THE LOVING TONGUE
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RAISE THOSE LAUGHING EYES: SPANISH IS THE LOVING TONGUE

          A new ‘stand alone’ single by Bob Dylan has always been a rare thing. In June 1971 Watching the River Flow arrived in our house – a little, unfancy artefact with that distinctive orange label. It was not a big hit, or any kind of hit at all. Nor was it any kind of...

YOUR LOVE CUTS LIKE A KNIFE:   WEDDING SONG
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YOUR LOVE CUTS LIKE A KNIFE:  WEDDING SONG

    In the closing months of 1973, Bob Dylan was back in the studio recording a ‘proper’ album of new songs, his first for over three years. The resulting Planet Waves, the only studio album on which The Band backed him, was seen as somewhat underwhelming at the time and has always stood in...

SELF PORTRAIT: AN AMERICAN SYMPHONY
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SELF PORTRAIT: AN AMERICAN SYMPHONY

                 Self Portrait has long been Bob Dylan’s most controversial album. On its release in 1970 it was greeted with shock and incomprehension. Here was the great protest singer and visionary poet of his age crooning ‘corny’ country songs. On the double fold out cover there were a whole lot of shots...

NOTHIN’ HERE NOW TO HOLD THEM: THE TRAGEDY OF NORTH COUNTRY BLUES
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NOTHIN’ HERE NOW TO HOLD THEM: THE TRAGEDY OF NORTH COUNTRY BLUES

North Country Blues could be called Bob Dylan’s most obscure protest song. Tucked away at the end of the generally bleak Times They Are a-Changin’ album, it has never, like the terrifying ‘murder ballad’ The Ballad of Hollis Brown, been electrified. Unlike Dylan’s ‘alternative history lesson’ With God on our Side it has not been...

BEAUTY IS TRUTH: BOB DYLAN’S POEM TO JOANIE
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BEAUTY IS TRUTH: BOB DYLAN’S POEM TO JOANIE

  The pursuit of and definition of beauty has been one of the major concerns of poets throughout the ages. In perhaps his best known poem, Sonnet 18, Shakespeare asks if it is wise to compare the object of his love to a summer’s day, which despite all its glories will inevitably fade away. But...