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Posted April 17, 2011
Dylan In The VERY Early Days
This was Bob Dylan when he was still a short-haired folkie, when he still idolized Woody Guthrie and when he just recorded his third album, "The Times They Are A-Changin'". He wasn't quite a household name, yet. That would change in just two years when he infuriated the folk music generation by going electric at The Newport Jazz Festival and later unleashed "Like A Rolling Stone", arguably the most durable, meaningful Sixties rock song ever made. But before all that happened, Columbia Records recorded quite a few Dylan live concerts, which have been released sporadically over the last few years. Nearly all of these early concert LPs demonstrate his ability to hold an audience with his topicality and even his sense of humor. This one was recorded at Brandeis University just shortly before the Kennedy assassination and before The Beatles came to America. It's a seven-song set. Yet, the intimacy of these songs, some of which were never released like the hilarious and very timely "Talking John Birch Paranoia Blues", comes through clearly. He doesn't do "Blowing In The Wind", which was being covered by Peter, Paul & Mary. However, he does do the even more powerful "Masters Of War", which sad to say has not lost its meaning some fifty years later. Dylan would undergo many changes in his life---full-tilt rocker, country music maven, Born-Again Christian, roots rocker, a Traveling Wilbury. Yet, the image of Bob Dylan as the folksinger looms large, probably because his music has as much meaning today as it did then. For those who want to know what all the fuss was about, they may want to check this out.
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