Tag Archives: Dylan

HIWAY AMERICA-GREENWICH VILLAGE WHAT REMAINS OF N.Y. BEAT GENERATION?

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Greenwich Village Sunday (1960 Documentary On The Counterculture / Beat

Culture In 1960’s New York)

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Greenwich Village: what remains of New York’s beat generation haunts?

Inside Llewyn Davis

http://youtu.be/R3v9pcQJZRU

A new Coen brothers film celebrates Greenwich Village in its 60s heyday, but what’s left of Dylan and Kerouac’s New York? Karen McVeigh takes a cycle tour of the area
Inside Llewyn Davis still
A still from the Coen Brothers new film, Inside Llewyn Davis. Photograph: Alison Rosa/Studio Canal
Karen McVeigh
@karenmcveigh1
Sunday 22 December 2013 01.00 EST Last modified on Thursday 22 May 2014 06.51 EDT

Five decades have passed since America’s troubadours and beat poets flocked to Greenwich Village, filling its smoky late-night basement bars and coffee houses with folk songs and influencing some of the most recognisable musicians of the era.

A few landmarks of those bygone bohemian days – most recently portrayed in the Coen brothers’ film Inside Llewyn Davis, out on 24 January – still exist. The inspiration for the movie’s fictional anti-hero, Davis, was Brooklyn-born Dave Van Ronk, a real- life blues and folk singer with no small talent, who worked with performers such as Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan, but remained rooted in the village until he died in 2002, declining to leave it for any length of time and refusing to fly for many years. Van Ronk’s posthumously published memoir, the Mayor of MacDougal Street, takes its name from the street that was home to the Gaslight Cafe, and other early 60s folk clubs.

The Village stretches from the Hudson River Park east as far as Broadway, and from West Houston Street in the south up to West 14th Street. Its small scale makes it easy to explore on foot and perfect for a musical pilgrimage, but the arrival last summer of New York’s bike-sharing scheme, Citibike, makes for a more adventurous experience.

CitiBikers in Greenwich Village
CitiBikers in Greenwich Village. Photograph: Alamy
I picked up a bike outside Franklin Street subway station, south of the Village in Tribeca, and headed out to the river, at Pier 45. Looking south you can see One World Trade Center: at 541m, it’s now the tallest building in the western hemisphere. Cycle or walk to the end of the boardwalk that juts out into the Hudson, facing Hoboken, New Jersey, and look to your left and you can see the Statue of Liberty. From there, it’s a short cycle along Christopher Street, up Hudson and along West 10th, to Bleecker Street, where designer boutiques such as Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors and Lulu Guinness mark the area’s steep gentrification.

On MacDougal Street, a jumble of comedy cellars, theatres and cheap eateries have mostly replaced the old, liquorless cafes and basement bars of the folk scene. It is the hub of New York University’s campus and many of the bars, falafel joints and pizza houses are priced for students, with $2 beers thrown in.

But several older venues still exist, including the Bitter End, which staged folk “hootenannies” every Tuesday and now calls itself New York’s oldest rock club”. The White Horse Tavern, built in 1880, still stands on the corner of Hudson Street and 11th. It was used by New York’s literary community in the 1950s – most notably Welsh bard Dylan Thomas. It was here, myth has it, that the writer had been drinking in November 1953, before he was rushed to hospital from his room at the Chelsea Hotel, and died a few days later.

Dave Van Ronk
Folk singer Dave Van Ronk, the inspiration for the Llewyn Davis character. Photograph: Kai Shuman/Getty Images
The original Cafe Wha? remains at 115 MacDougal Street, on the corner of Minetta Lane. In the bitter winter of 1961, when the Coen brothers movie is set, cash-strapped artists similar to Davis would take their chances at the open mic. It was here that Bob Dylan made his New York debut, and Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac performed. Cafe Wha? continued to attract artists and musicians long after the Village folk scene gave way to rock’n’roll. A notice on the door catalogues a few of the famous names who played here: Jimi Hendrix, Ritchie Havens, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and the Velvet Underground. It is still a popular music venue, with a house band playing five nights a week.

The real centre of the folk scene back then, however, was Washington Square, where musicians would gather on Sundays to swap ideas, learn new material and play. According to folk singer and historian Elijah Wald, the ballad and blues singers who sat around the fountain in the park created sounds that would influence artists from Joni Mitchell and Joan Baez to folk-rock groups the Lovin’ Spoonful, the Byrds and the Mamas and the Papas. The hero of the Coens’ film is not Van Ronk, according to Wald, but he does sing some Van Ronk songs and shares his working-class background.

When I visited on a sunny but cold December day, there was only one musician, a saxophonist, playing under Washington Square’s stone arch, but at weekends the park fills with rap and jazz musicians playing to tourists and students. Bikes are not officially allowed inside the square, but there are Citibike stations around it, so it’s easy to park and walk around.

A block north of the park, on West 8th Street, is a historic 107-room property once known as Marlton House and home to many writers and poets, who were attracted by relatively cheap rates and the bohemian neighbourhood. Jack Kerouac wrote The Subterraneans and Tristessa while living here and, in a darker episode, Valerie Solanas was staying in room 214 in 1968, when she became infamous for stalking and then shooting Andy Warhol.

The Marlton Hotel
The new Marlton Hotel
Sean MacPherson, who owns the stylish Bowery and Jane hotels nearby, has just reopened the building as the Parisian-inspired Marlton Hotel (marltonhotel.com). I popped in to its very comfortable lobby for coffee and a flick through its copy of John Strausbaugh’s The Village: 400 years of Beats and Bohemians, Radicals and Rogues. And I caught up with Strausbaugh later, to ask him about the village in the early 1960s, when young idealists were living hand to mouth and sleeping on friends’ couches.

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“In 1961, if you were in any way an artistic person in America, in that vast American landscape, you were a lonely figure,” said Strausbaugh. “You heard about San Francisco, you heard about Greenwich Village, and you went there. You didn’t play there to make money; you went there to be heard. Like Dylan, who played at the Cafe Wha?, then got another entry-level gig, then began playing at the biggest places.”

There were others, Strausbaugh said, like Van Ronk, who were talented, but whose ambitions were more modest than those of Dylan and Baez. The unique thing about the Village, he added, is that it survived so long as a bohemian enclave, from the early 1850s, when it attracted poets such as Walt Whitman, to the beatniks and folk revivalists of the 1950s and later.

“The left bank [in Paris] did not last 100 years, but the Village did,” he said.

Many of the buildings and sometimes entire streets in the Village have been preserved and are now home to some of the most expensive real estate in Manhattan and sought-after for their distinctive, old Greenwich Village look. A struggling folk artist might find a cheap meal in one of the student cafes around MacDougal Street, but they would never be able to afford to live in the area – or anywhere in Manhattan, realistically.

“It has not been completely finished off,” said Strausbaugh. “There are still a lot of theatres. But the people who make the music have not been able to live there for 20 or 30 years.”

Greenwich Village: Music That Defined a Generation Q&A at DOC NYC 2012

http://youtu.be/28cc8qaI748

Bleecker Street: Greenwich Village in the ’60s traces and tributes the bohemian Mecca’s part in the emergence of singer/songwriters and the folk revival during the ’60s. The initial passion and sense of discovery in this music remains undimmed, as politically and emotionally conscious songs by Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, Tim Buckley, Judy Collins, and Paul Simon are reinterpreted by contemporary artists like Chrissie Hynde, Ron Sexsmith, Beth Nielsen Chapman, and many others.

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LEGENDS OF FOLK: THE VILLAGE SCENE | Clip | PBS

http://youtu.be/VQjVXeUz7uI

THE VILLAGE MOVEMENT

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GINSBERG AND DYLAN AT KEROUAC’S GRAVE

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GINSBERG AND DYLAN AT KEROUAC’S GRAVE

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The counterculture of the 1960s was marked by a growing distrust of government

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The counterculture of the 1960s was marked by a growing distrust of government

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The American Counterculture refers to the period between 1964-1972 when the norms of the 1950s were rejected by youth.
Key Points

◾Counterculture youth rejected the cultural standards of their parents, especially with respect to racial segregation, the Vietnam War, sexual mores, women’s rights, and materialism.

◾Hippies were the largest countercultural classification comprising mostly white members of the middle class.

The counterculture movement divided the country.

◾The movement died in the early 1970s because most of their goals had become mainstream, and because of rising economic troubles.
Terms

◾quash

To defeat forcibly.

◾stagflation

Inflation accompanied by stagnant growth, unemployment or recession.

◾counterculture

Any culture whose values and lifestyles are opposed to those of the established mainstream culture, especially to western culture.

A counterculture developed in the United States in late 1960s. This movement lasted from approximately 1964 to 1972, and it coincided with America’s involvement in Vietnam. A counterculture is the rejection of conventional social norms – in this case the norms of the 1950s . The counterculture youth rejected the cultural standards of their parents, specifically racial segregation and initial widespread support for the Vietnam War.

Woodstock Youth

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This photo was taken near the Woodstock Music Festival in August, 1969. The counterculture in the 1960s was characterized by young people breaking away from the traditional culture of the 1950s.

As the 1960s progressed, widespread tensions developed in American society that tended to flow along generational lines regarding the war in Vietnam , race relations, sexual mores, women’s rights, traditional modes of authority, and a materialist interpretation of the American Dream. White, middle class youth, who made up the bulk of the counterculture, had sufficient leisure time to turn their attention to social issues, thanks to widespread economic prosperity.

Vietnam War Protest

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The counterculture of the 1960s was marked by a growing distrust of government
, which included anti-war protests like this.
Unconventional appearance, music, drugs, communitarian experiments, and sexual liberation were hallmarks of the sixties counterculture, most of whose members were white, middle-class young Americans. Hippies became the largest countercultural group in the United States . The counterculture reached its peak in the 1967 “Summer of Love,” when thousands of young people flocked to the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. The counterculture lifestyle integrated many of the ideals and indulgences of the time: peace, love, harmony, music, and mysticism. Meditation, yoga, and psychedelic drugs were embraced as routes to expanding one’s consciousness.

The Peace Sign
peace-sign
The peace sign became a major symbol of the counterculture of the 1960s.

Rejection of mainstream culture was best embodied in the new genres of psychedelic rock music, pop-art, and new explorations in spirituality. Musicians who exemplified this era include The Beatles, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, The Rolling Stones, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, and Pink Floyd.

New forms of musical presentation also played a key role in spreading the counterculture, mainly large outdoor rock festivals. The climactic live statement of this occurred from August 15–18, 1969, with the Woodstock Music Festival held in Bethel, New York. During this festival, 32 of rock and psychedelic rock’s most popular acts performing live outdoors over the course of a weekend to an audience of half a million people.

Countercultural sentiments were expressed in song lyrics and popular sayings of the period, such as “do your own thing,” “turn on, tune in, drop out,” “whatever turns you on,” “eight miles high,” “sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll,” and “light my fire. ” Spiritually, the counterculture included interest in astrology, the term “Age of Aquarius,” and knowing people’s signs.

The counterculture movement divided the country. To some Americans, these attributes reflected American ideals of free speech, equality, world peace, and the pursuit of happiness. To others, the counterculture movement reflected a self-indulgent, pointlessly rebellious, unpatriotic, and destructive assault on America’s traditional moral order.

In an effort to quash the movement, authorities banned the psychedelic drug LSD, restricted political gatherings, and tried to enforce bans on what they considered obscenity in books, music, theater, and other media. In the end, the counterculture collapsed on its own around 1973.

Two main reasons are cited for the collapse. First, the most popular of the movement’s political goals—civil rights, civil liberties, gender equality, environmentalism, and the end of the Vietnam War—were accomplished (to at least a significant degree), and its most popular social attributes, particularly a “live and let live” mentality in personal lifestyles (the “sexual revolution”)—were co-opted by mainstream society. Second, a decline of idealism and hedonism occured as many notable counterculture figures died and the rest settled into mainstream society and started their own families.

The “magic economy” of the 1960s gave way to the stagflation of the 1970s, the latter costing many middle-class Americans the luxury of being able to live outside conventional social institutions. The counterculture, however, continues to influence social movements, art, music, and society in general, and the post-1973 mainstream society has been in many ways a hybrid of the 1960s establishment and counterculture—seen as the best (or the worst) of both worlds.

BOB DYLAN DOES IT RIGHT

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BOB DYLAN DOES IT RIGHT

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Bob Dylan – Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door (Unplugged)

http://youtu.be/cJpB_AEZf6U

ALS Blog Spot

ALS is responsible for nearly 6000 deaths annually, and not much has changed in 70 years.

Having grown up with rock legend Bob Dylan, Rob Borsellino always wanted to shake the hand of his favorite artist. With the help of a friend those hands finally met out west near a corn field.
On April 21, 2006, legendary musicians Bob Dylan and Merle Haggard traveled to Des Moines, Iowa to perform a concert in Borsellino’s honor, raising over $100,000 for the ALS Association.
Rob received the Voice of Courage Award accepted by Sen. Tom Harkin at ALSA’s Celebration of Excellence Reception and Awards Presentation in Washington, D.C.
Columnist for Des Moines Registry, Rob testified before the Senate Subcommittee 2005.
The ALS community has many Legends – Rob Borsellino was just that.

ESSENTIAL HIPPIE QUOTES

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Hippie Quotes

 
Overview

The embodiment of youth in the 1960s, the hippie subculture proved to be one of the most influential and proactive groups in American history, culminating at Woodstock. Shaping the face of music, culture, and politics in the 1960s and beyond, their wave of protest and fresh ideas has become a standard for youth all over the world. Producing some of the most famous quotes pertaining to peace and music, hippie quotes are forever ingrained in the lexicon of peace, youth, and revolt. Here is a collection of the best hippie quotes ever documented.

Hippie Quotes, Sayings, and Phrases

 
 

Hippie Quotes on Music

Work like you don’t need the money. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Dance like nobody’s watching.

-Satchel Paige

We’re more popular than Jesus now; I don’t know which will go first- rock and roll or Christianity.

-John Lennon

Do you believe in rock ‘n roll? Can music save your mortal soul?

-Don McLean

Down through all of eternity the crying of humanity, tis’ then when the hurdy gurdy man comes singing songs of love.

-Donovan

Do you believe in magic? Believe in the magic of a young girl’s soul? Believe in the magic of rock ‘n roll? Believe in the magic that can set you free?

-The Lovin’ Spoonful

The New York State Freeway’s closed, man. Far out!

-Arlo Guthrie

Good morning! What we have in mind is breakfast in bed for 400,000.

-Wavy Gravy at Woodstock

Let the sound take you away…

-Steppenwolf

There was a band playing in my head, and I felt like getting high

-Neil Young

We all sang the songs of peace

-Melanie

We all got up to dance. Oh, but we never got the chance!

-Don McLean

You know what rock musicians are? They are hung up, neurotic, over-weight hippies with sex problems.

-David Lee Roth

Love is a friendship set to music.

-Joseph Campbell

Hippies on Activism

 

Hippie Activism Quotes

There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.

-Jim Morrison

The first duty of a revolutionary is to get away with it.

-Abbie Hoffman

If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.

-Eldridge Cleaver

You must be the change you wish to see in the world.

-Mahatma Ghandi

Never doubt that a small group of thoughful, committed individuals can change the world, indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.

-Margaret Meade 


He who takes a stand is often wrong, but he who fails to take a stand is always wrong. 


-Anonymous

They won’t give peace a chance, that’s just a dream some of us had

-Joni Mitchell

Hell no, we won’t go!

-Anti-war chant

Question Authority!

-Unknown

If I’m free, it’s because I’m always running.


-Jimi Hendrix

Masses are always breeding grounds of psychic epidemics. 


-Carl Jung

Mother, should I trust the government?

-Pink Floyd

We all want to change the world.

-Beatles

Hippie Philosophy

Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac

Hippie Quotes on Philosophy

Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command. 


-Alan Watts

You’re either on the bus or off the bus.


-Ken Kesey

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”

-Jack Kerouac

Kerouac opened a million coffee bars and sold a million pairs of Levis to both sexes. Woodstock rises from his pages.

-William S. Burroughs

When you’ve seen beyond yourself, then you may find, peace of mind is waiting there.

-George Harrison

Old hippies don’t die, they just lie low until the laughter stops and their time comes round again.

-Joseph Gallivan

Hippy is an establishment label for a profound, invisible, underground, evolutionary process. For every visible hippy, barefoot, beflowered, beaded, there are a thousand invisible members of the turned-on underground. Persons whose lives are tuned in to their inner vision, who are dropping out of the TV comedy of American Life.

-Timothy Leary

All I’m gonna do is just go on and do what I feel.


-Jimi Hendrix

It all depends on how we look at things, and not how they are in themselves. 


-Carl Jung

Imagine no possesions, I wonder if you can, No need for greed or hunger, A brotherhood of man. Imagine all the people Sharing all the world.

-John Lennon

Hippies and Life

 

Hippie Quotes on Life

Herb is the healing of a nation, alcohol is the destruction.


-Bob Marley

His hair has the long jesuschrist look. He is wearing the costume clothes. But most of all, he now has a very tolerant and therefore withering attitude toward all those who are still struggling in the old activist political ways…while he, with the help of psychedelic chemicals, is exploring the infinite regions of human consciousness.

-Tom Wolfe

Purple Haze all in my brain, lately things don’t seem the same. Actin’ funny but I don’t know why. ‘Scuse me while I kiss the sky.

-Jimi Hendrix

Your mind is like a parachute, it doesn’t work unless it’s open. 


-Jordan Maxwell

Dope will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no dope.

-Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers

If you can remember the ’60s, then you weren’t there.

-Unknown

One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small. And the ones that mother gives you don’t do anything at all. Go ask Alice, when she’s ten feet tall.

-Jefferson Airplane

My advice to people today is as follows: If you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out.

-Timothy Leary

I get by with a little help from my friends, get high with a little help from my friends.

-The Beatles

Hippies on Love

 

Hippie Quotes About Love

Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.


-Joseph Campbell

Make Love, Not War

-Unknown

Love is all you need.

-Beatles

I’ll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours. 


-Unknown

Make Love, Not War

-Unknown

I do my thing, and you do your thing. I am not tin this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you, and I am I, and if by chance we find each other, it’s beautiful.

-Frederick E. Perl

Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it’s cracked up to be. That’s why people are so cynical about it…It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.

-Erica Jong

We’ve got this gift of love, but love is like a precious plant. You can’t just accept it and leave it in the cupboard or just think it’s going to get on by itself. You’ve got to keep on watering it. You’ve got to really look after it and nurture it”

-John Lennon

Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself. Love possesses not nor would it be possessed; For love is sufficient unto love.

-Kahlil Gibran

Made up my mind to make a new start. Going to California with an aching in my heart. Someone told me there’s a girl out there with love in her eyes and flowers in her hair.

-Led Zeppelin

Carry on, love is coming. Love is coming to us all.

-CS&N

Hippies on Freedom

 

Hippie Quotes on Freedom

War is over, if you want it. 


-John Lennon

If you want to be free, be free, because there’s a million things to be.

-Cat Stevens

The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. …You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask.

-Jim Morrison

Got to get back to the land and set my soul free.

-Joni Mitchell/CS&N

Nobody living can ever stop me. As I go walking my freedom highway. Nobody living can make me turn back. This land was made for you and me.

-Woody Guthrie

Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free.

-Jim Morrison

Paranoia strikes deep into your life it will creep. It starts when you’re always afraid. You step out of line, the man come and take you away.

-Buffalo Springfield

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams, Live the life you’ve always imagined.


-Henry David Thoreau 


We can change the world, rearrange the world. It’s dying – if you believe in justice. It’s Dying – if you believe in freedom. It’s Dying – let a man live his own life. It’s Dying – rules and regulations, who needs them! Open up the door.

-Crosby, Stills & Nash

THE INCONIC BOB DYLAN

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Artist Biography by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Bob Dylan‘s influence on popular music is incalculable. As a songwriter, he pioneered several different schools of pop songwriting, from confessional singer/songwriter to winding, hallucinatory, stream-of-consciousness narratives. As a vocalist, he broke down the notion that a singer must have a conventionally good voice in order to perform, thereby redefining the vocalist’s role in popular music. As a musician, he sparked several genres of pop music, including electrified folk-rock and country-rock. And that just touches on the tip of his achievements. Dylan‘s force was evident during his height of popularity in the ’60s — the Beatles‘ shift toward introspective songwriting in the mid-’60s never would have happened without him — but his influence echoed throughout several subsequent generations, as many of his songs became popular standards and his best albums became undisputed classics of the rock & roll canon. Dylan‘s influence throughout folk music was equally powerful, and he marks a pivotal turning point in its 20th century evolution, signifying when the genre moved away from traditional songs and toward personal songwriting. Even when his sales declined in the ’80s and ’90s, Dylan‘s presence rarely lagged, and his commercial revival in the 2000s proved his staying power.

For a figure of such substantial influence, Dylan came from humble beginnings. Born in Duluth, Minnesota, Bob Dylan (b. Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) was raised in Hibbing, Minnesota, from the age of six. As a child he learned how to play guitar and harmonica, forming a rock & roll band called the Golden Chords when he was in high school. Following his graduation in 1959, he began studying art at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. While at college, he began performing folk songs at coffeehouses under the name Bob Dylan, taking his last name from the poet Dylan Thomas. Already inspired by Hank Williams and Woody GuthrieDylan began listening to blues while at college, and the genre wove its way into his music. He spent the summer of 1960 in Denver, where he met bluesman Jesse Fuller, the inspiration behind the songwriter’s signature harmonica rack and guitar. By the time he returned to Minneapolis in the fall, he had grown substantially as a performer and was determined to become a professional musician.

Dylan made his way to New York City in January of 1961, immediately making a substantial impression on the folk community of Greenwich Village. He began visiting his idolGuthrie in the hospital, where he was slowly dying from Huntington’s chorea. Dylan also began performing in coffeehouses, and his rough charisma won him a significant following. In April, he opened for John Lee Hooker at Gerde’s Folk City. Five months later, Dylan performed another concert at the venue, which was reviewed positively by Robert Shelton in The New York Times. Columbia A&R man John Hammond sought out Dylan on the strength of the review, and signed the songwriter in the fall of 1961. Hammond produced Dylan‘s eponymous debut album (released in March 1962), a collection of folk and blues standards that boasted only two original songs. Over the course of 1962, Dylan began to write a large batch of original songs, many of which were political protest songs in the vein of his Greenwich contemporaries. These songs were showcased on his second album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Before its release, Freewheelin’ went through several incarnations. Dylan had recorded a rock & roll single, “Mixed Up Confusion,” at the end of 1962, but his manager, Albert Grossman, made sure the record was deleted because he wanted to presentDylan as an acoustic folkie. Similarly, several tracks with a full backing band that were recorded forFreewheelin’ were scrapped before the album’s release. Furthermore, several tracks recorded for the album — including “Talking John Birch Society Blues” — were eliminated from the album before its release.

Comprised entirely of original songs, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan made a huge impact in the U.S. folk community, and many performers began covering songs from the album. Of these, the most significant were Peter, Paul and Mary, who made “Blowin’ in the Wind” into a huge pop hit in the summer of 1963 and thereby made Bob Dylan into a recognizable household name. On the strength of Peter, Paul and Mary‘s cover and his opening gigs for popular folkie Joan BaezFreewheelin’ became a hit in the fall of 1963, climbing to number 23 on the charts. By that point, Baez and Dylan had become romantically involved, and she was beginning to record his songs frequently. Dylan was writing just as fast.

By the time The Times They Are A-Changin’ was released in early 1964, Dylan‘s songwriting had developed far beyond that of his New York peers. Heavily inspired by poets likeArthur Rimbaud and John Keats, his writing took on a more literate and evocative quality. Around the same time, he began to expand his musical boundaries, adding more blues and R&B influences to his songs. Released in the summer of 1964, Another Side of Bob Dylan made these changes evident. However, Dylan was moving faster than his records could indicate. By the end of 1964, he had ended his romantic relationship with Baez and had begun dating a former model named Sara Lowndes, whom he subsequently married. Simultaneously, he gave the Byrds “Mr. Tambourine Man” to record for their debut album. the Byrds gave the song a ringing, electric arrangement, but by the time the single became a hit, Dylan was already exploring his own brand of folk-rock.

Inspired by the British Invasion, particularly the Animals‘ version of “House of the Rising Sun,” Dylan recorded a set of original songs backed by a loud rock & roll band for his next album. While Bringing It All Back Home (March 1965) still had a side of acoustic material, it made clear that Dylan had turned his back on folk music. For the folk audience, the true breaking point arrived a few months after the album’s release, when he played the Newport Folk Festival supported by the Paul Butterfield Blues Band. The audience greeted him with vicious derision, but he had already been accepted by the growing rock & roll community. Dylan‘s spring tour of Britain was the basis for D.A. Pennebaker‘s documentary Don’t Look Back, a film that captures the songwriter’s edgy charisma and char

Dylan made his breakthrough to the pop audience in the summer of 1965, when “Like a Rolling Stone” became a number two hit. Driven by a circular organ riff and a steady beat, the six-minute single broke the barrier of the three-minute pop single. Dylan became the subject of innumerable articles, and his lyrics became the subject of literary analyses across the U.S. and U.K. Well over 100 artists covered his songs between 1964 and 1966; the Byrds and the Turtles, in particular, had big hits with his compositions. Highway 61 Revisited, his first full-fledged rock & roll album, became a Top Ten hit shortly after its summer 1965 release. “Positively 4th Street” and “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” became Top Ten hits in the fall of 1965 and spring of 1966, respectively. Following the May 1966 release of the double album Blonde on Blonde, he had sold over ten million records around the world.

During the fall of 1965, Dylan hired the Hawks, formerly Ronnie Hawkins‘ backing group, as his touring band. the Hawks, who changed their name to the Band in 1968, would become Dylan‘s most famous backing band, primarily because of their intuitive chemistry and “wild, thin mercury sound,” but also because of their British tour in the spring of 1966. The tour was the first time the British had heard the electric Dylan, and their reaction was disagreeable and violent. At the Manchester concert (long mistakenly identified as the show from London’s Royal Albert Hall), an audience member called Dylan“Judas,” inspiring a positively vicious version of “Like a Rolling Stone” from Dylan and the band. The performance was immortalized on countless bootleg albums (an official release finally surfaced in 1998), and it indicates the intensity of Dylan in the middle of 1966. He had assumed control of Pennebaker‘s second Dylan documentary, Eat the Document, and was under deadline to complete his bookTarantula, as well as record a new record. Following the British tour, he returned to America.

The Basement Tapes

On July 29, 1966, he was injured in a motorcycle accident outside of his home in Woodstock, New York, suffering injuries to his neck vertebrae and a concussion. Details of the accident remain elusive — he was reportedly in critical condition for a week and had amnesia — and some biographers have questioned its severity, but the event was a pivotal turning point in his career. After the accident, Dylanbecame a recluse, disappearing into his home in Woodstock and raising his family with his wife, Sara. After a few months, he retreated with the Band to a rented house, subsequently dubbed Big Pink, in West Saugerties to record a number of demos. For several months, Dylan and the Band recorded an enormous amount of material, ranging from old folk, country, and blues songs to newly written originals. The songs indicated that Dylan‘s songwriting had undergone a metamorphosis, becoming streamlined and more direct. Similarly, his music had changed, owing less to traditional rock & roll, and demonstrating heavy country, blues, and traditional folk influences. None of the Big Pink recordings was intended to be released, but tapes from the sessions were circulated by Dylan‘s music publisher with the intent of generating cover versions. Copies of these tapes, as well as other songs, were available on illegal bootleg albums by the end of the ’60s; it was the first time that bootleg copies of unreleased recordings became widely circulated. Portions of the tapes were officially released in 1975 as the double album The Basement Tapes.

John Wesley Harding

While Dylan was in seclusion, rock & roll had become heavier and artier in the wake of the psychedelic revolution. WhenDylan returned with John Wesley Harding in December of 1967, its quiet, country ambience was a surprise to the general public, but it was a significant hit, peaking at number two in the U.S. and number one in the U.K. Furthermore, the record arguably became the first significant country-rock record to be released, setting the stage for efforts by the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers later in 1969.

Nashville Skyline

Dylan followed his country inclinations on his next album, 1969’s Nashville Skyline, which was recorded in Nashville with several of the country industry’s top session men. While the album was a hit, spawning the Top Ten single “Lay Lady Lay,” it was criticized in some quarters for uneven material. The mixed reception was the beginning of a full-blown backlash that arrived with the double-album Self Portrait. Released early in June of 1970, the album was a hodgepodge of covers, live tracks, re-interpretations, and new songs greeted with negative reviews from all quarters of the press. Dylan followed the album quickly with New Morning, which was hailed as a comeback.

Dylan [1973]

Following the release of New MorningDylan began to wander restlessly. He moved back to Greenwich Village, he finally published Tarantula in November of 1970, and he performed at the Concert for Bangladesh in August 1971. During 1972, he began his acting career by playing Alias in Sam Peckinpah’s Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, which was released in 1973. He also wrote the soundtrack for the film, which featured “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door,” his biggest hit since “Lay Lady Lay.” The Pat Garrett soundtrack was the final record released under his Columbia contract before he moved to David Geffen‘s fledgling Asylum Records. As retaliation, Columbia assembled Dylan, a collection of Self Portrait outtakes, for release at the end of 1973. Dylan only recorded two albums — including 1974’s Planet Waves, coincidentally his first number one album — before he moved back to Columbia. the Band supported Dylan on Planet Wavesand its accompanying tour, which became the most successful tour in rock & roll history; it was captured on 1974’s double live album Before the Flood.

Dylan‘s 1974 tour was the beginning of a comeback culminating with 1975’s Blood on the Tracks. Largely inspired by the disintegration of his marriage, Blood on the Tracks was hailed as a return to form by critics and it became his second number one album. After jamming with folkies in Greenwich Village, Dylan decided to launch a gigantic tour, loosely based on traveling medicine shows. Lining up an extensive list of supporting musicians — including Joan BaezJoni MitchellRamblin’ Jack Elliott,Arlo GuthrieMick RonsonRoger McGuinn, and poetAllen Ginsberg — Dylan dubbed the tour the Rolling Thunder Revue and set out on the road in the fall of 1975. For the next year, the Rolling Thunder Revue toured on and off, with Dylan filming many of the concerts for a future film. During the tour,Desire was released to considerable acclaim and success, spending five weeks on the top of the charts. Throughout the Rolling Thunder RevueDylan showcased “Hurricane,” a protest song he had written about boxer Rubin Carter, who had been unjustly imprisoned for murder. The live album Hard Rain was released at the end of the tour. Dylan released Renaldo and Clara, a four-hour film based on the Rolling Thunder tour, to poor reviews in early 1978.

Early in 1978, Dylan set out on another extensive tour, this time backed by a band that resembled a Las Vegas lounge act. The group was featured on the 1978 album Street Legaland the 1979 live album At Budokan. At the conclusion of the tour in late 1978, Dylan announced that he was a born-again Christian, and he launched a series of Christian albums that following summer with Slow Train Coming. Though the reviews were mixed, the album was a success, peaking at number three and going platinum. His supporting tour forSlow Train Coming featured only his new religious material, much to the bafflement of his long-term fans. Two other religious albums — Saved (1980) and Shot of Love (1981) — followed, both to poor reviews. In 1982,Dylan traveled to Israel, sparking rumors that his conversion to Christianity was short-lived. He returned to secular recording with 1983’s Infidels, which was greeted with favorable reviews.

Dylan returned to performing in 1984, releasing the live albumReal Live at the end of the year. Empire Burlesque followed in 1985, but its odd mix of dance tracks and rock & roll won few fans. However, the five-album/triple-disc retrospective box set Biograph appeared that same year to great acclaim. In 1986, Dylan hit the road with Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers for a successful and acclaimed tour, but his album that year, Knocked Out Loaded, was received poorly. The following year, he toured with the Grateful Dead as his backing band; two years later, the souvenir album Dylan & the Dead appeared.

In 1988, Dylan embarked on what became known as “the Never-Ending Tour” — a constant stream of shows that ran on and off into the late ’90s. That same year, he appeared onThe Traveling Wilburys, Vol. 1 — by the supergroup also featuring George HarrisonRoy OrbisonTom Petty, andJeff Lynne — and released his own Down in the Groove, an album largely comprised of covers. The Never-Ending Tour received far stronger reviews than Down in the Groove (theTraveling Wilburys album fared much better), but 1989’s Oh Mercy was his most acclaimed album since 1975’s Blood on the Tracks, due in part to Daniel Lanois‘ strong production. However, Dylan‘s 1990 follow-up, Under the Red Sky (issued the same year as the second album bythe Traveling Wilburys, now a quartet following the death of Roy Orbison shortly after the release ofthe Wilburys‘ first long-player in 1988), was received poorly, especially when compared to the enthusiastic reception for the 1991 box set The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3 (Rare & Unreleased), a collection of previously unreleased outtakes and rarities.

Good as I Been to You

For the remainder of the ’90s, Dylan divided his time between live concerts, painting, and studio projects. He returned to recording in 1992 with Good as I Been to You, an acoustic collection of traditional folk songs. It was followed in 1993 by another folk record, World Gone Wrong, which won the Grammy for Best Traditional Folk Album. After the release ofWorld Gone WrongDylan released a greatest-hits album and a live record.

Time Out of Mind

Dylan releasedTime Out of Mind, his first album of original material in seven years, in the fall of 1997. Time Out of Mind received his strongest reviews in years and unexpectedly debuted in the Top Ten, eventually climbing to platinum certification. Such success sparked a revival of interest in Dylan, who appeared on the cover of Newsweek and began selling out concerts once again. Early in 1998,Time Out of Mind received three Grammy Awards — Album of the Year, Best Contemporary Folk Album, and Best Male Rock Vocal.

Love and Theft

Another album of original material, Love and Theft, followed in 2001 and went gold. Soon after its release, Dylanannounced that he was making his own film, to star Jeff BridgesPenelope CruzJohn GoodmanVal Kilmer, and many more. The accompanying soundtrack, Masked and Anonymous, was released in July 2003. Dylan opted to self-produce his new studio album, Modern Times, which topped the Billboard charts and went platinum in both America and the U.K. It was Dylan‘s third consecutive album to receive praise from critics and support from consumers, and it was followed three years later in 2009 by Together Through Life, another self-produced effort (as Jack Frost) that also featured contributions from David Hidalgo of Los Lobos and Mike Campbell of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers. He capped off the year with an old-fashioned holiday effort, Christmas in the Heart. Proceeds from the album were donated to various charities around the world. Dylan released the self-produced (again as Jack FrostTempest on September 11, 2012.