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View Diary: Books Go Boom!   Bob Dylan's Birthday: Are Rock Lyrics Poetry? (243 comments)

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  •  Oops. My brother gave it to me for Christmas, but (3+ / 0-)

    I haven't listened to it yet. I get two music magazines (Mojo and Uncut), and I think they gave it 4 and 5 stars. But, ever since his triumphant comeback with Time Out of Mind and Love and Theft, he's achieved rock sainthood. Fair enough - even compared to Neil Young, Bowie, and Lou Reed, Dylan's an exceptional evergreen. Leonard Cohen is maintaining very high standards, but Dylan has such a huge body of work.

    I have grown up on Dylan's '60s and '70s work. I just haven't put in the time to burrow into his more recent albums, to savor their subtleties, the same way I've lived inside his earlier albums. So the short answer is, no.

    "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

    by Brecht on Sat May 25, 2013 at 10:05:13 AM PDT

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    •  Comparing Tempest-Dylan with Old Ideas-Cohen (4+ / 0-)

      The most recent efforts by both these poets show two different guys possessed by their creative spark and going in different directions. I think Old Ideas is one of Cohen's best and Tempest one of Dylan's worst. Not really fair to say that either artist's worst is really bad in any way, many would sell their soul to reach the height of the lower rungs of either artist's brilliance.

      Leonard really gets me with his deep appreciation of wound and flaw and how that can lead to personal transformation. As an older dude I like where he is headed his song "Come Healing" is a good example sort of like a previous song of his "Anthem".

      O, gather 'round the brokenness
      Bring it to me now
      The fragrance of those promises
      You never dared to vow

      The splinters that you carried
      The cross you left behind
      Come healing of the body
      Come healing of the mind

      And let the heavens hear it
      The penitential hymn
      Come healing of the spirit
      Come healing of the limb

      Behold the gates of mercy
      In arbitrary space
      And none of us deserving
      Of cruelty or the grace

      O, solitude of longing
      Where love has been confined
      Come healing of the body
      Come healing of the mind

      O, see the darkness yielding
      That tore the light apart
      Come healing of the reason
      Come healing of the heart

      Love = Awareness of mutually beneficial exchange across semi-permeable boundaries. Political and economic systems either amplify or inhibit Love.

      by Bob Guyer on Sat May 25, 2013 at 10:33:26 AM PDT

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      •  "Not really fair to say that either artist's worst (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest, Monsieur Georges

        is really bad . . ."

        Dylan said, of the critics that sometimes cruelly dissect his work, "I'd like to see them try to write just one song". Also, whatever flaws he has disappear, measured against all of his ambition and accomplishment. That said, he has at times shown a lack of patience, and a poor sense of quality control.

        It's certainly amusing that this titan of songwriting also recorded Wiggle Wiggle:

        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a gypsy queen
        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle all dressed in green
        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle 'til the moon is blue
        Wiggle 'til the moon sees you

        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle in your boots and shoes
        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, you got nothing to lose
        Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, like a swarm of bees
        Wiggle on your hands and knees

        Wiggle to the front, wiggle to the rear
        Wiggle 'til you wiggle right out of here
        Wiggle 'til it opens, wiggle 'til it shuts
        Wiggle 'til it bites, wiggle 'til it cuts . . .

        "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

        by Brecht on Sat May 25, 2013 at 02:34:52 PM PDT

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        •  Funny, they are different here too (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Monsieur Georges, Brecht

          Cohen very slow and selective, Dylan like a fire hose. They treat their relationship to their muse differently. I like both ways of although in my own creative process I mix the two impulses so I can appreciate the virtues of either way of treating the demands of ones creative impulses. With Dylan there is more and more to criticize but the process in total is glorious.

          Love = Awareness of mutually beneficial exchange across semi-permeable boundaries. Political and economic systems either amplify or inhibit Love.

          by Bob Guyer on Sat May 25, 2013 at 03:57:03 PM PDT

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    •  I like Tempest a lot (3+ / 0-)

      Stern and frail all at once.  I have to say that the collection of songs on Tell-Tale Signs is amazing and regularly hits my car CD and stays there for days.  The sequence of songs starting with "Girl from the Red River Shore" and going through "Can't Wait" is astounding in my book.  Its grown man music.

      . On ne gagne que les combats que l'on mène

      by NearlyNormal on Sat May 25, 2013 at 12:13:15 PM PDT

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