Sunday, March 22, 2015

bringing it all back home

Bob Dylan took a ride on a magic swirling ship and created a new template for rock with the electric folk of this surreal subterranean landmark.  Following the completion of 'Another Side of Bob Dylan', he spent time in Woodstock, New York where his manager Albert Grossman (that's his wife Sally on the album cover) had a house.  It was there that he wrote most of the songs that would end up on his next album.  'Bringing It All Back Home' was recorded at Columbia Recording Studios in New York City during January of 1965 with producer Tom Wilson.  The album features Bob Dylan on guitar, harmonica, keyboards, and vocals;  with John Boone, Bill Lee, Joseph Macho, Jr., and John B. Sebastian on bass guitar;    Al Gorgoni, John P. Hammond, Bruce Langhorne, and  Kenny Rankin  on guitar;   Bobby Gregg on drums;  Paul Griffin on piano and keyboards;   and Frank Owens on piano.   Side one is characterized by an electric sound and side two is acoustic.  When Dylan headlined the Newport Folk Festival in July, he made the transition in the middle of his set from the acoustic folk that he had played the two years previously to an electric sound, drawing boos from much of the crowd.  

Dylan would reveal:  "I can't really think that there is any rock 'n' roll. Actually, when you think about it, anything that has no real existence is bound to become an international phenomenon. Anyway, what does it mean, rock 'n' roll?... Anyway, the word is not "international phenomenon"; the word is "parental nightmare."... As far as folk and folk-rock are concerned, it doesn't matter what kind of nasty names people invent for the music. It could be called arsenic music, or perhaps Phaedra music. I don't think that such a word as folk-rock has anything to do with it. And folk music is a word I can't use. Folk music is a bunch of fat people. I have to think of all this as traditional music. Traditional music is based on hexagrams. It comes about from legends, Bibles, plagues, and it revolves around vegetables and death. There's nobody that's going to kill traditional music. All these songs about roses growing out of people's brains and lovers who are really geese and swans that turn into angels - they're not going to die. It's all those paranoid people who think that someone's going to come and take away their toilet paper - they're going to die. Songs like "Which Side Are You On?" and "I Love You, Porgy" - they're not folk-music songs; they're political songs. They're already dead. Obviously, death is not very universally accepted. I mean, you'd think that the traditional-music people could gather from their songs that mystery - just plain simple mystery - is a fact, a traditional fact. I listen to the old ballads; but I wouldn't go to a party and listen to the old ballads. I could give you descriptive detail of what they do to me, but some people would probably think my imagination had gone mad. It strikes me funny that people actually have the gall to think that I have some kind of fantastic imagination. It gets very lonesome. But anyway, traditional music is too unreal to die. It doesn't need to be protected. Nobody's going to hurt it. In that music is the only true, valid death you can feel today off a record player. But like anything else in great demand, people try to own it. It has to do with a purity thing. I think its meaninglessness is holy. Everybody knows that I'm not a folk singer...I was kind of stunned [by the response of the audience at the Newport Folk Festival]. But I can't put anybody down for coming and booing: after all, they paid to get in. They could have been maybe a little guieter and not so persistent, though. There were a lot of old people there, too; lots of whole families had driven down from Vermont, lots of nurses and their parents, and well, like they just came to hear some relaxing hoedowns, you know, maybe an Indian polka or two. And just when everything's going all right, here I come on, and the whole place turns into a beer factory. There were a lot of people there who were very pleased that I got booed. I saw them afterward. I do resent somewhat, though, that everybody that booed said they did it because they were old fans...A mistake is to commit a misunderstanding. There could be no such thing, anyway, as this action. Either people understand or they pretend to understand - or else they really don't understand. What you're speaking of here is doing wrong things for selfish reasons. I don't know the word for that, unless it's suicide. In any case, it has nothing to do with my music...Carelessness [made me decide to go the rock-'n'-roll route]. I lost my one true love. I started drinking. The first thing I know, I'm in a card game. Then I'm in a crap game. I wake up in a pool hall. Then this big Mexican lady drags me off the table, takes me to Philadelphia. She leaves me alone in her house, and it burns down. I wind up in Phoenix. I get a job as a Chinaman. I start working in a dime store, and move in with a 13-year-old girl. Then this big Mexican lady from Philadelphia comes in and burns the house down. I go down to Dallas. I get a job as a "before" in a Charles Atlas "before and after" ad. I move in with a delivery boy who can cook fantastic chili and hot dogs. Then this 13-year-old girl from Phoenix comes and burns the house down. The delivery boy - he ain't so mild: He gives her the knife, and the next thing I know I'm in Omaha. It's so cold there, by this time I'm robbing my own bicycles and frying my own fish. I stumble onto some luck and get a job as a carburetor out at the hot-rod races every Thursday night. I move in with a high school teacher who also does a little plumbing on the side, who ain't much to look at, but who's built a special kind of refrigerator that can turn newspaper into lettuce. Everything's going good until that delivery boy shows up and tries to knife me. Needless to say, he burned the house down, and I hit the road. The first guy that picked me up asked me if I wanted to be a star. What could I say? ... I've stopped composing and singing anything that has either a reason to be written or a motive to be sung. Don't get me wrong, now. "Protest" is not my word. I've never thought of myself as such. The word "protest," I think, was made up for people undergoing surgery. It's an amusement-park word. A normal person in his righteous mind would have to have the hiccups to pronounce it honestly. The word "message" strikes me as having a hernia-like sound It's just like the word "delicious." Also the word "marvelous." You know, the English can say "marvelous" pretty good. They can't say "raunchy" so good, though. Well, we each have our thing. Anyway, message songs, as everybody knows, are a drag. It's only college newspaper editors and single girls under 14 that could possibly have time for them ... It's not all that deep. It's not a complicated thing. My motives, or whatever they are, were never commercial in the money sense of the word. It was more in the don't die-by-the-hacksaw sense of the word. I never did it for money. It happened, and I let it happen to me. There was no reason not to let it happen to me. I couldn't have written before what I write now, anyway. The songs used to be about what I felt and saw. Nothing of my own rhythmic vomit ever entered into it. Vomit is not romantic. I used to think songs are supposed to be romantic. And I didn't want to sing anything that was unspecific. Unspecific things have no sense of time. All of us people have no sense of time; it's a dimensional hangup. Anybody can be specific and obvious. That's always been the easy way. The leaders of the world take the easy way. It's not that it's so difficult to be unspecific and less obvious; it's just that there's nothing, absolutely nothing, to be specific and obvious about. My older songs, to say the least, were about nothing. The newer ones are about the same nothing - only as seen inside a bigger thing, perhaps called the nowhere. But this is all very constipated. I do know what my songs are about...Some are about four minutes; some are about five, and some, believe it or not, are about eleven or twelve."

 'Bringing It All Back Home'  became his biggest selling album yet, going to number six in the US and number one in the UK.

"Subterranean Homesick Blues" 

Johnny’s in the basement
Mixing up the medicine
I’m on the pavement
Thinking about the government
The man in the trench coat
Badge out, laid off
Says he’s got a bad cough
Wants to get it paid off
Look out kid
It’s somethin’ you did
God knows when
But you’re doin’ it again
You better duck down the alley way
Lookin’ for a new friend
The man in the coon-skin cap
By the big pen
Wants eleven dollar bills
You only got ten

Maggie comes fleet foot
Face full of black soot
Talkin’ that the heat put
Plants in the bed but
The phone’s tapped anyway
Maggie says that many say
They must bust in early May
Orders from the D.A.
Look out kid
Don’t matter what you did
Walk on your tiptoes
Don’t try “No-Doz”
Better stay away from those
That carry around a fire hose
Keep a clean nose
Watch the plain clothes
You don’t need a weatherman
To know which way the wind blows

Get sick, get well
Hang around a ink well
Ring bell, hard to tell
If anything is goin’ to sell
Try hard, get barred
Get back, write braille
Get jailed, jump bail
Join the army, if you fail
Look out kid
You’re gonna get hit
But users, cheaters
Six-time losers
Hang around the theaters
Girl by the whirlpool
Lookin’ for a new fool
Don’t follow leaders
Watch the parkin’ meters

Ah get born, keep warm
Short pants, romance, learn to dance
Get dressed, get blessed
Try to be a success
Please her, please him, buy gifts
Don’t steal, don’t lift
Twenty years of schoolin’
And they put you on the day shift
Look out kid
They keep it all hid
Better jump down a manhole
Light yourself a candle
Don’t wear sandals
Try to avoid the scandals
Don’t wanna be a bum
You better chew gum
The pump don’t work
’Cause the vandals took the handles

"Maggie's Farm"

Bob Dylan; maggies farm live by fuzz59

"Love Minus Zero/No Limit"

"Mr. Tambourine Man"

Bob Dylan – Mr. Tambourine Man by Palaiokostas1

 "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)"

"It's All Over Now, Baby Blue"

 'Bringing It All Back Home' 
full album:

All songs written and composed by Bob Dylan.

Side one
1. "Subterranean Homesick Blues"   2:21
2. "She Belongs to Me"   2:47
3. "Maggie's Farm"   3:54
4. "Love Minus Zero/No Limit"   2:51
5. "Outlaw Blues"   3:05
6. "On the Road Again"   2:35
7. "Bob Dylan's 115th Dream"   6:30
Side two
1. "Mr. Tambourine Man"   5:30
2. "Gates of Eden"   5:40
3. "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)"   7:29
4. "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue"   4:12

liner notes 
By Bob Dylan 

i'm standing there watching the parade/ feeling combination of sleepy john estes. jayne mansfield. humphrey bogart / mortimer snurd. murph the surf and so forth/ erotic hitchhiker wearing japanese blanket. gets my attention by asking didn't he see me at this hootenanny down in puerto Vallarta, mexico / i say no you must be mistaken. i happen to be one of the Supremes / then he rips off his blanket an suddenly becomes a middle-aged druggist. up for district attorney. he starts screaming at me you're the one. you're the one
that's been causing all them riots over in vietnam. immediately turns t a bunch of people an says if elected, he'll have me electrocuted publicly on the next fourth of july. i look around an all these people he's talking to are carrying blowtorches / needless t say, i split fast go back t the nice quiet country. am standing there writing WHAAAT? on my favorite wall when who should pass by in a jet plane but my recording engineer “i'm here t pick up you and your latest works of art. do you need any help with anything?" 


my songs're written with the kettledrum in mind / a touch of any anxious color. unmentionable. obvious. an people perhaps like a soft brazilian singer … i have 
given up at making any attempt at perfection / the fact that the white house is filled with leaders that've never been t the apollo theater amazes me. why allen ginsberg was not chosen t read poetry at the inauguration boggles my mind / if someone thinks norman mailer is more important than hank williams, that's fine. i have no arguments an i never drink milk. i would rather model harmonica holders than discuss aztec anthropology / english literature. or history of the united nations. i accept chaos. i am not sure whether 
it accepts me. i know there're some people terrified of the bomb. but there are other people terrified t be seen carrying a modern screen magazine. experience teaches that silence terrifies people the most ... i am convinced that all souls have some superior t deal with / like the school system, an invisible circle of which no one can think without consulting someone / in the face of this, responsibility / security. success mean absolutely nothing ... i would not want t be bach. mozart. tolstoy. joe hill. gertrude stein or james dean / they are all dead. the Great books've been written. the Great sayings have all been said / I am about t sketch You a picture of what goes on around here sometimes. tho I don't understand too well myself what's really happening. i do know that we're all gonna die someday an that no death has ever stopped the world. my poems are written in a rhythm of unpoetic distortion/ divided by pierced ears. false eyelashes / subtracted by people constantly torturing each other. with a melodic purring line of descriptive hollowness – seen at times thru dark sunglasses an other forms of psychic explosion. a song is anything that can walk by itself / i am called a songwriter. a poem is a naked person … some people say that i am a poet 

(end of pause) 

an so i answer my recording engineer "yes. well i could use some help in getting this wall in the plane" 

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