The Other DYLAN
Anybody else catch "No Direction Home," Martin Scorcese's 3.5 hour documentary on the rise of BOB DYLAN? If you didn't, you missed a hell of a document on the man and what events forged his legendary status. Full of all kinds of never-before-seen footage, the flick took us from Bob's childhood in Minnesota to the motorcycle crash that put him in seclusion from touring for years in the late 1960s.
Every few months I go through a Dylan phase. I'm sure this isn't news to anyone who reads this blog. This is probably the second or third time I've written about the guy since January. What can I say... I've been fascinated by the guy since I took a gamble and bought "THE FREEWHEELIN' BOB DYLAN" when I was in high school. I liked Dylan a bit before that, but hearing that record blew me away. Here's a high school kid listening to all kinds of punk, hard rock and hip-hop, and in comes this raw little heartbreaking record featuring a guy and his acoustic guitar singing songs about the world - and his heart - in collapse.
Last week, a few days after watching that Scorcese doc, I got to interview JOAN BAEZ for one of the local entertainment papers in town. I was talking to the person who was personally responsible for putting one of my favorite songwriters on the map. I wouldn't say I'm the world's biggest Joan Baez fan (I own none of her records), but I have a newfound respect for her after speaking with her and watching her interviewed in that movie.
Her interpretations of Dylan's songs have always been stirring and pretty powerful. Tonight I'm putting up a few more interpretations of his work. While none of these songs - in my mind - top the originals, I hope that maybe they'll steer a few people towards his work who may have ignored him in the past.
"Isis" by THE WHITE STRIPES
"Don't Think Twice, it's All Right" by NICK DRAKE
"Mama, You've Been on My Mind" by JOHNNY CASH
"Mama, You've Been on My Mind" by JEFF BUCKLEY
"Lay Lady Lay" by MAGNET (w/GEMMA HAYES)
"I Shall be Released" by MARION WILLIAMS
"Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" by NINA SIMONE
For more on some of tonight's artists:
- One of my previous Dylan posts
- A pretty comprehensive Nina Simone site
- Home of Magnet
- The official Jeff Buckley site.
- Nick Drake, A to Z
- A Wikipedia entry on Marion Williams
- The White Stripes performing "Ball and Biscuit" with Bob Dylan. Tons more downloads available at WhiteStripes.net.