The Essential Bob Dylan

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Scott Schinder
While Bob Dylan's remarkable body of work is far too large and complex to lend itself to easy compilation, this 30-song double-CD package does a very reasonable job of presenting a balanced overview of Dylan's oeuvre, touching on the various junctures of his multifarious career while not always falling back on the most obvious hits. Unlike Columbia's three Greatest Hits comps and the sprawling Biograph box set, Essential is arranged chronologically, so it functions as a fascinating guided tour through the visionary -- and sometimes baffling -- twists and turns of the artist's unique career. The track selection does a good job of demonstrating Dylan's leap from such ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Scott Schinder
While Bob Dylan's remarkable body of work is far too large and complex to lend itself to easy compilation, this 30-song double-CD package does a very reasonable job of presenting a balanced overview of Dylan's oeuvre, touching on the various junctures of his multifarious career while not always falling back on the most obvious hits. Unlike Columbia's three Greatest Hits comps and the sprawling Biograph box set, Essential is arranged chronologically, so it functions as a fascinating guided tour through the visionary -- and sometimes baffling -- twists and turns of the artist's unique career. The track selection does a good job of demonstrating Dylan's leap from such immortal folkie protest anthems as "Blowin' in the Wind," "It Ain't Me Babe," and "The Times They Are A-Changin' " toward the more ambitious surrealist poetry of "Like a Rolling Stone," "Positively 4th Street," and "Subterranean Homesick Blues," followed by his subsequent return to relatively straightforward insight in '70s tunes such as "Tangled Up in Blue" and "Hurricane," and it brings the story up to date with the haunting "Not Dark Yet" (from the 1997 comeback disc Time Out of Mind) and the non-album "Things Have Changed" (from the Wonder Boys film soundtrack. Of course no two-CD package can completely do justice to an arist as prolific -- and as profound -- as Dylan, but Essential offers a sensibly assembled, user-friendly introduction to his remarkable output.
All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
A double-disc set released for the holiday season of 2000, The Essential Bob Dylan is a fine choice for the casual listener that just wants all the songs they know on one collection -- it's Dylan's equivalent of Beatles One. Outside of the remastering and the previously non-LP and very good "Things Have Changed," there's nothing here for collectors, but, then again, that's not who this was designed for. This collection is for the listener that wants "Blowin' in the Wind," "Like a Rolling Stone," "All Along the Watchtower," "Quinn the Eskimo," "Lay Lady Lay," and "Tangled Up in Blue" in one tidy place. Yes, it's easy to find great songs missing, but for those casual fans, and for those looking for a fairly comprehensive yet concise entry point, The Essential Bob Dylan comes close to living up to its title.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/31/2000
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 696998516823
  • Catalog Number: 85168

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Bob Dylan Primary Artist, Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals
Technical Credits
Bob Dylan Composer
Robert Hunter Composer
Jacques Levy Composer
David Gahr Cover Art, Inlay Photography
Jerry Schatzberg Back Cover
Ken Regan Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Dylan has been here forever, where was I?

    The book Chronicles spured my renewed interest in Dylan as a serious artist. I listened to "Essential Bob Dylan" while reading "Chronicles, Vol I". Now I study Dylan. Once you find him you just cant let go. I hear him completely differently then I did in the 60's. It's like I had to muture to appreciate his music and now there's no artist better.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Bob is the "boss"

    This is a very good collection of some of the masters songs. The only fault, if any, must be that more songs could be added. If anybody deserve to be called the boss, Bob is the man. Sorry Bruce, everybody get small compared with Dylan.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    My favorite Dylan songs packed into one

    This double disc feature of Bob dylan is a great masterpiece. I can listen to this from when i wake up to the afternoon, even to when i am about to go to sleep. This brings back the classics and remasters them completely. Each song is in the perfect order and i could listen to each song and fell comfortable with not changing any of the songs or skipping any. Bob dylan is one of my favorite artists and for them to bring back his beautiful songs and poetry back to cd and remaster it is one of the best things they could do. The double disc feature is very impressive to give you even more bang for your buck, even though the cd maybe pricey for some, you might as well buy the greatest hits because this is my kinda cd. All i can tell you is thta this cd set is pure gold, dylan at his best and it will keep you thinking about poetry,life,and peace for a long time, i enjoyed this folk singer's lyrics and i still hope i can look forward to buying more cds of this artist

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I'm buying it!

    I am a pretty young person and just found out who Bob Dylan is and I love his music. It's been said that when it comes down to great song writing The greats are Stephen Foster, Hank Williams (Sr. even though Jr.'s good Hank was the man), and Bob Dylan

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Essential Album

    When I bought this, I thought this CD will be wack, But when I open this, Put CD 1 in my CD player, loads, and press play, I heard it calm and no interupt my listing. I heard two songs before I bought this album of bob dylan. So this is the essential album to put this in your Bob Dylan Section. (A must have)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great songs, but a very good compilation

    First of all, there is nothing wrong with the songs that are here. The ones that aren't is quite a different matter, however, and to me this collection is completely overshadowed by Dylan's two original Greatest Hits-albums (Greatest Hits from 1967, if I remember correctly, and Greatest Hits vol. II from 1971). If you are relatively new to Bob Dylan, go get those two phenomenal collections instead. Sure, they don't have his later material, but neither does this album. Not the best of it, anyway. And once you've decided if Dylan is your thing, go on to "Blood On The Tracks", "Live 1975" and maybe "Desire". Leave this good-but-not-great record company cash-in alone.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Simply Fabulous

    I haven't listened to Dylan in years. This was one of the greatest compilations an album could accomplish. All the great songs are here. If I could tell you all one thing it would be to BUY THIS ALBUM!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    ESSENTIALLY MARVY!!!

    THIS COLLECTION OF DYLAN SONGS IS A CHRONOLOGY OF HIS CAREER. HIS EARLY TUNES LIKE ''BLOWIN' IN THE WIND'', TO HIS MIDWAY CAREER TUNES LIKE ''LAY LADY LAY'', TO HIS LATER CAREER TUNES LIKE ''THINGS HAVE CHANGED'',[WHICH HE RECENTLY WON AN OSCAR FOR], SOUNDS GREAT IN THIS 'REMASTERED' COLLECTION.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    TWO WORDS- BOB DYLAN

    This is a great CD. If you are a Bob Dylan fan you must have this one too. The man and his music is nothing short of genues.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Some of the greatest music the world has ever seen!!

    This is one of the best albums from one of the best astists of all time.I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this album set, it really captured the musical career of Bob Dylan. There are a few songs from all of the different styles of Dylan. There were some songs with just him, his guitar and his harmonica, as well as with his Band. There were some of his protest songs and just plain fun songs. I loved it. I do admit that there are a few ''essential'' songs that didn't make the final cut, but then again he has too many hits to be put on just 2 discs. Save the rest for the next one.

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