Jeff Lewis Forum Index
$1.75 US
$1.95 CAN
Jeff Lewis
message board
 
  FAQ     Search     Memberlist     Usergroups     Register  
  Profile     Log in to check your private messages     Log in  

Bob Dylan Nobel Price in literature

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Jeff Lewis Forum Index -> About anything
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
christian



Joined: 08 Jun 2015
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:46 am    Post subject: Bob Dylan Nobel Price in literature Reply with quote

I have barely started to scratch the surface of the vast Bob Dylan catalogue, I really don't know a lot about him or of his songs. What I like is every now and then you stumble over a quote from one of his songs, or a reference, or a cover version, and then you start listening to it, wondering about the meaning, go online and read interpretations of it... most recently this happened to me just a few weeks ago. I was watching the Jimmy Fallon show and was about to switch to another channel when they said Miley Cirus was going to perform a Bob Dylan song. It turned out to be "Baby I'm in the Mood for You" (Odetta's version):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61MCDFy-cJY

Here the original: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blysLjyYh7I

Anyhow that was a long introduction that has not much relation with the actual question: What are your thoughts on Bob Dylan winning the Nobel Price in Literature? It reminds me of an episode of the popular TV show "Parks and Recreation", where they give the "Woman of the Year Award" to a man - cause otherwise no one cares. I think that might be sort of the case here, they want to stay relevant and in the news so every now and then they need to have this big surprise, like Barack Obama, or the European Union, or Bob Dylan. Well whether this was their primary goal or not, this is being discussed everywhere so it sure brought them a lot of publicity. I think Dylan's reaction is just perfect: no reaction at all. Awards are kind of silly and super political and by not engaging with any of it I feel like Dylan is able to expose that to a degree.

Another thing I wonder about is Dylan's role as a precourser of Antifolk... is he popular among antifolk artists, do some consider him an influence or a role model?

What are your favorite Dylan albums?

That's a lot of questions about Bob Dylan Laughing
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 688
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2016 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm all in favour, literature takes many forms and I'm sure they considered lots of people and he has written some very iconic lines (as well as some poor ones, but nobodies perfect!) - Dylan reminds me of my childhood as my dad and myself would listen to lots of music together, he'd play his guitar and I'd listen and sing along with him. I guess I am a bit biased in that way but yeah, no complaints from me.
_________________
Get rich or TRY SHARING....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
jefflewis



Joined: 21 Nov 2005
Posts: 1108

PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, there's a lot of Bob Dylan stuff to listen to!
I discovered those records in high school, when I was about 14, 15, because my parents had some of the old records and I started taping them and listening to the tapes on my walkman on my way to school. To this day I'm mostly familiar with the 60s records, I only know a handful of the 70s records, and I know almost none of the 80s-90s-00 stuff (tho I do have a couple of the modern albums).
Here's some thoughts on what to check out, from the discography that I'm familiar with! These albums are listed sort of in chronological order... then whether or not I think it's a good one!
1) the first album, self-titled - (1961?) I really like this album, but it's very different from the others, Bob is super-young, he hasn't even really started writing songs yet, and he just sounds like a very enthusiastic kid at an open mic. It's full of energy and personality, but it's mostly just old folk and blues songs.
2) The Freewheeling Bob Dylan (1962?)- his second album - This is a MUST! Very funny, very fun, this is a really magical record.
3) The Times they Are A-Changing (1963?)- I don't like this one. Mostly sort of dark and serious and not very fun, it has some good and famous songs but I don't listen to it very much.
4) Another Side of Bob Dylan (1964)- This one is also a MUST!! This has everything you'd need to make a decision about whether he's a genius - It's got really loose fun stuff, really beautiful stuff, really smart stuff, and it's still super-raw, just solo acoustic, and he wrote and recorded all these songs very fast. This album is like going to an open mic and seeing somebody utterly brilliant and unexpected and young and on fire!
5) Bringing it All Back Home -(1965) this is the first one that has some electric rock songs on it, plus folk songs. This album is also TOTALLY great and a TOTAL MUST. If this album doesn't make you a Bob Dylan fan, and make you think he's an awesome genius, probably nothing will. It's insane to me to think that there are people in the world who have not heard this record. It has to be in the top ten albums ever made, really. Leaves every other songwriter far behind in the dust, forever.
6) Highway 61 Revisited - (1965) this is the second electric album, and it's maybe his most famous record - it has a lot of songs that are just as awesome and genius as the previous album, but to me it has some slightly boring material too. It is still in his super genius period, and a MUST-listen record.
7) Blonde on Blonde - (1966) - this one is very over-rated, I think. People will disagree with me. I don't think all that much of this record. It has a few very good songs, but it has a LOT of stuff that is sort of boring and not nearly as good as the previous records. I hate the sound of the band on this album, every song has a sort of boring organ-heavy musical arrangement, it's a rock band but it doesn't rock very hard, compared to the last two records. Also this album has some songs that I actually hate and want to skip.
Cool John Wesley Harding (1967?) - This is a weird album. I think the first side is totally awesome weird genius, then the second side is boring and soppy. That first side is totally killer though, haunting, like nightmares.
9) Nashville Skyline (1968?) - this is the country album, which starting the trend for a band to "go country" and make a country record... which is mostly a stupid idea, in my opinion... but this is a very nice Dylan record, with some really great and fun and touching songs. I don't think it's a good place to start, but it's a better album than it looks, considering it's sort of a "novelty" record.
10) Self-Portrait (1969?) - This is only for desperate fans, Dylan made this record just to do some cheap quick crap because he was tired of people calling hi a genius. It's interesting, and I really love the track "All the Tired Horses" that he doesn't even sing on, but I don't listen to this album much.
11) The Basement Tapes - this is a double-album of stuff home-recorded in 1966, and there's actually now a whole 5-disc box set of ALL the home-recorded 1966 stuff, which includes a lot of pointless crap (unless you're a curious super-fan), but the Basement Tapes IS really great, and I think it's a LOT better and more fun than the official Blonde on Blonde album that came out that year. These recordings are often very weird and funny, and there's a lot of cool songs.
12) New Morning (1970?) - I actually just got this record for the first time and it's really good. The songs are more simple, and the music is really solid and nice, a lot of good songs. It's a bit like a Neil Young record maybe; like, just nice good songs without being too fancy, no long crazy stories.
13) Blood on the Tracks (1971?) - Again this is a very famous Dylan record that I do NOT like very much. It has one or two very good songs on it, and the rest of it is mostly boring to me. I don't know why people say they love this record so much.
14) Desire (1974?) - Similar to Blood on the Tracks this is a very famous record, but to me it only has maybe two really great songs (Hurricane and Isis), and then a lot of other songs that I'm not very interested in.
15) Street Legal (1977?) - This is an album that nobody ever talks about, it's not famous at all, but I would WAY rather listen to this record than Desire or Blood on the Tracks, it has so many cool good weird songs, it doesn't have any "hits" but it is a totally solid really great record, that will probably make you a Dylan fan.

That's really all the Dylan albums that I'm familiar with... there are other famous ones like Slow Train Coming that I've listened to but have never owned... I'm sure my opinions are not the same as other people's, but I think Bringing It All Back Home is probably the record that most people would have to agree on in their top-three Dylan albums.

Oh yeah, there's also the Bob Dylan Bootleg Series, and I really have to say this is one the ABSOLUTE BEST things to me... the first Bootleg Series release which has a lot of unreleased acoustic songs from his early 1961-1964 period, that particular collection (it's one cassette that I have) was EXTREMELY influential on me, and especially when I was first starting to write songs. It's material that is somewhat similar to the material on his first records, and it is ALL very very VERY good, fun, sad, short, some folk song covers and some originals, so great. Just as good or better than most of his official albums. Right now there are many volumes of the Bootleg Series, I think they have like 9 volumes, I haven't heard most of them, but that very first one that has his earliest out-take unreleased songs, that's the one that's so amazing and important to me, it's kind of like another version of The Freewheeling Bob Dylan, same spirit but all different songs.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 688
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a result of reading the above post I gave The Freewheelin' a spin this afternoon for the first time in ages. There is nothing wrong with that record, still sounds great.
_________________
Get rich or TRY SHARING....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Ian Cockburn



Joined: 10 Mar 2015
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got so annoyed about people I know slagging off Bob Dylan or the Nobel Prize committee, or both, over this.

Some ask if lyrics can be considered literature. Anyone who knows anything about the history of literature knows that of course they are. And if they weren't, they would be now anyway because of postmodernism,

Some ask if Bob Dylan's lyrics can be separated from the music. Of course they work best with the music, but the main strength is still the lyrics, and they are literary. And one of my favourite of his works, "last thoughts of Woody Guthrie", doesn't have any music.

Some cite some of his less good lyrics, as if every writer didn't deserve to be judged by their best work instead of their worst.

Some say other writers have much greater need of the money, as if it wasn't supposed be judged on merit.

Some just hate Bob Dylan. Well fine, you don't have to like everything others praise. It's subjective. Have you read all the work by previous Nobel Laureates? Did you like everything THEY did? If not, did you kick up as much of a fuss when THEY won? Or is it only Bob who is uniquely singled out as unworthy.

Some cite other writers they think much more deserving. I am not very well read of recent highbrow authors, I mostly read books by dead people, so I can't comment on whether they're right or not. I do know that one person people cite, Salman Rushdie, was full of praise for the decision. One writer mentioned I *am* familiar with Haruki Murakami- well, I'm a big fan, I've read all his books, but the idea that he is a more important writer than Dylan is crazy to me.

So in conclusion people should respect the decision, and if they don't think Dylan is one of the greats of Western civilisation, well plenty of people do.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Ian Cockburn



Joined: 10 Mar 2015
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My favourite Dylan albums

1. Blonde on Blonde (don't listen to Jeff)
2. Bringing It All Back Home
3. Highway 61 Revisited
4. Freewheelin'
5. Another Side
6. Blood on the Tracks
7. Basement Tapes
8. Times They Are A-Changin'
9. John Wesley Harding
10. Street-Legal
11. Shot Of Love
12. Planet Waves
13. Desire
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lauragek



Joined: 26 May 2009
Posts: 99

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2016 5:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm so excited about the literature Nobel prize going to lyrics. I have learned more English vocabulary from lyrics than from anything else. The most impressive pieces of texts I've ever read/heard have been lyrics.

I've only ever listened to The Freewheelin' and Desire. I usually only have a short tolerance for Bob Dylan's sound, sometimes I prefer to only read the lyrics, haha! I guess that makes a literature prize well deserved...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 688
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2016 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's true well written lyrics that stand alone as poetry are deserving of the prize for literature. I don't think the music can be considered in a prize for literature, only the words.
_________________
Get rich or TRY SHARING....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
All times are GMT + 1 Hour
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Jeff Lewis Forum Index -> About anything
 
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group