Bob Dylan: The Never Ending Star / Edition 1

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Venerated as rock's one true genius, Dylan is considered responsible for introducing a new range of topics and new lyrical complexity into popular music. Without Bob Dylan, rock critic Dave Marsh once claimed, there would be no popular music as we understand it today.

As such an exalted figure, Dylan has been the subject of countless books considering various dimensions of both the man and his music. This book places new emphasis on Dylan as a rock star. Whatever else he is, Dylan is a star - iconic, charismatic, legendary, enigmatic. No one else in popular music has maintained such star status over so long a period. Lee Marshall provides new insight into Dylan's career, discussing his emergence as a star in the folk revival (the "spokesman for a generation") and the formative role he played in creating a new type of music - rock - and a new type of star. Bringing the book right up to date, he also sheds new light on how Dylan's later career has been shaped by his earlier star image and how Dylan repeatedly tried to throw off the limitations and responsibilities of his stardom.

About the Author:
Lee Marshall is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Bristol

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"One of the most enlightening of the 115 titles currently weighingdown my groaning Zim bookshelf ... Readers are lucky that an expertfellow fan has applied his specialist insight to create anoriginal, compelling explanation of the 'Bob Dylan' phenomenon. Andthat he’s done so with such an accessible and stylishlywritten book."

Dylan Daily

"A rich, highly readable cultural history of popular music fromthe early 1960s to the present, read through and around Dylan'sremarkable public career."

Times Higher Education Supplement

"Marshall has an excellent grasp of what rock music has meantwithin popular culture and how it has changed over time, and givesin this book the clearest explanation I have ever come across ofrock’s (and therefore Dylan’s) place withinpost-modernism. Moreover, he really knows his Dylan."


"A landmark new study of the star's career."

Bristol Evening Post

"As Lee Marshall shows us, plenty is left to say about Dylan andhis many personas ... An inventive and captivating study of Dylanthat not only looks at his folk years but also examines his currentface."

Electric Review

"Finally, a Bob Dylan book that is refreshingly bereft of 1960snostalgia: Lee Marshall challenges much received wisdom by arguingthat Dylan’s touring and performances since the late 1980sare central to his music. This is an important book. It representsa major contribution to studies of stardom and a provocativeintervention into debates about the art and identity of BobDylan."

Keith Negus, Goldsmiths, University of London

"This is a remarkable book, one of the few truly original waysof looking at Bob Dylan that I've seen in recent years. WhatMarshall gives you is not so much fresh interpretations ofindividual Dylan songs, but rather a completely rethought contextfor understanding the whole of Dylan's career, analysing the socialand cultural structures which both constrained and enabled Dylan'screativity. By concentrating on the phenomenon of Dylan as a"star," Marshall opens up many fascinating approaches, not least(in the strongest passages of the book) in his brilliant discussionof the Never Ending Tour. This book will be a critical benchmarkfor Dylan scholars, as well as a provocative delight for fans ofrock's definitive star."

Stephen Scobie, author of Alias Bob DylanRevisited

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745636412
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 9/28/2007
  • Series: Polity celebrities Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 300
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Lee Marshall is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Bristol.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements     xi
The theoretical bit
Introduction     1
Stardom, Authorship and the Meaning of Songs     14
Dylan's sixties stardom
Snapshot: The man of the people     49
Folk Stardom: Star as Ordinary, Star as Special     52
Snapshot: The chameleon poet     85
Rock Stardom: Reconciling Culture and Commerce     88
Snapshot: The retiring father     115
Beyond Stardom: Rock History and Canonisation     118
Dylan's later stardom
Snapshot: The rock legend     149
Declining Stardom: Nostalgia and the 'Death of Rock'     152
Snapshot: The wandering minstrel     183
Redefining Stardom: The Never Ending Tour     186
Snapshot: The soul of previous times     229
Never Ending Stardom: Dylan after Time Out Of Mind     232
Notes     277
Bibliography     287
List of Interviews     295
Copyright Acknowledgements     299
Index     304
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