Play me a song

Bob Dylan is the man for a global crisis. His album Love and Theft was unwittingly released on 11 September 2001, a cornerstone of culture at a time when the world seemed to be tumbling. Now, in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic that has see a quarter of the world’s population retreat behind itsRead More

Masks and faces

Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese, newly released theatrically and on Netflix, opens with a film by Georges Méliès. Escamotage d’une dame chez Robert-Houdin (1896), known in English as The Vanishing Lady, features Méliès in his familiar role as a magician, placing a woman (Jehanne d’Alcy) under a cloth and, throughRead More

Dylan’s jazz

I’d listen to a lot of jazz and bebop records, too. Records by George Russell or Johnny Cole, Red Garland, Don Byas, Roland Kirk, Gil Evans – Evans had recorded a rendition of “Ella Speed,” the Leadbelly song. I tried to discern melodies and structures. There were a lot of similarities between some kinds ofRead More