Was Bob Dylan a prophet?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by ParanoidAni-droid, Jun 9, 2002.

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  1. ParanoidAni-droid Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 27, 2001
    star 4

    [image=http://www.mtr.org/exhibit/dylan/images/dylan11.gif]

    I just thought this conversation was best continued here since it deals with this man's poetry and song and it's impact on society as well as our personal lives.

    Here's the old thread for you new comers:

    The messiah with a stratacaster

    ~PAd

  2. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    I've heard about Dylan over the years, but I don't know much about him or his work. Could you give a summary?

  3. ParanoidAni-droid Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 27, 2001
    star 4

    [image=http://music.newyouth.beida-online.com/newyouth/music/zhuanti/images/bob-dylan-1.jpg]

    Sure, but the question is, "where to begin?" I suppose the beginning is as good a place as any. Yet, bear in mind that this will be really abreviated. Anyone who plans to get into writing owes it to themselves to give Dylan a listen. In the survey of his work that I hope to give here, you'll find that Dylan made some truly brilliant music. His poetry even overshadowed that of his "Beat" contemporaries like Kerouac and Ginsberg.

    Dylan, born with the name Robert Zimmerman, had his beginings in music during the whole folkie-protest singer movement along with Joan Baez. As far as the music went:

    His first album, called simply Bob Dylan, was released in March 1962. It presented a collection of folk and blues standards, often about death and sorrows and the trials of life, songs that had been included in Dylan's repertoire over the past year or so, performed with gusto and an impressive degree of sensitivity for a 20-year-old. But it was the inclusion of two of his own compositions, most notably the mature and affectionate tribute, "Song To Woody", that pointed the way forward. Over the next few months, Dylan wrote dozens of songs, many of them "topical" songs. Encouraged by his girlfriend, Suze Rotolo, Dylan became interested in, and was subsequently adopted by, the Civil Rights movement. His song "Blowin' In The Wind', written in April 1962, was to be the most famous of his protest songs and was included on his second album, The Freewheelin" Bob Dylan, released in May 1963. In the meantime, Dylan had written and recorded several other noteworthy early political songs, including "Masters Of War" and "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall", and, during a nine-month separation from Suze, one of his greatest early love songs, "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right".

    This snippet was from here

    I'll post an over view of his later days in my next post, but first things first. Bob's achivements during this era ranged from humble to quite prodigious for his age and here are a couple exampels of his great lyricism even at an early age:

    A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall

    blowin' in the wind

    So much more to come!

    ~PAd


  4. Muppet Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 10, 2002
    star 1
    Ooh a Dylan thread!!! Im a huge fan of Zimmy, I have all of his albums plus about ten bootlegs. Seen him in concert 3 times. My fave album: Blood on the tracks, fave song: Most of the time. Greatest songwriter of all time in my opinion.

    But anyway was Dylan a prophet? Certainly some of his early `protest` songs could be considered prophetic in a way. I did a college dissertation on his Bobness, but none of its online.

    Im going to go read the other Dylan thread now.
  5. Tobie_Wan Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 4
    If you check out the song Neighborhood Bully from the album Infidels its a pretty good commentary on whats happening with The US and the Middle East right now, even though it came out years ago.

    Well, the neighborhood bully, he's just one man,
    His enemies say he's on their land.
    They got him outnumbered about a million to one,
    He got no place to escape to, no place to run.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    The neighborhood bully just lives to survive,
    He's criticized and condemned for being alive.
    He's not supposed to fight back, he's supposed to have thick skin,
    He's supposed to lay down and die when his door is kicked in.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    The neighborhood bully been driven out of every land,
    He's wandered the earth an exiled man.
    Seen his family scattered, his people hounded and torn,
    He's always on trial for just being born.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    Well, he knocked out a lynch mob, he was criticized,
    Old women condemned him, said he should apologize.
    Then he destroyed a bomb factory, nobody was glad.
    The bombs were meant for him.
    He was supposed to feel bad.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    Well, the chances are against it and the odds are slim
    That he'll live by the rules that the world makes for him,
    'Cause there's a noose at his neck and a gun at his back
    And a license to kill him is given out to every maniac.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    He got no allies to really speak of.
    What he gets he must pay for, he don't get it out of love.
    He buys obsolete weapons and he won't be denied
    But no one sends flesh and blood to fight by his side.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    Well, he's surrounded by pacifists who all want peace,
    They pray for it nightly that the bloodshed must cease.
    Now, they wouldn't hurt a fly.
    To hurt one they would weep.
    They lay and they wait for this bully to fall asleep.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    Every empire that's enslaved him is gone,
    Egypt and Rome, even the great Babylon.
    He's made a garden of paradise in the desert sand,
    In bed with nobody, under no one's command.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    Now his holiest books have been trampled upon,
    No contract he signed was worth what it was written on.
    He took the crumbs of the world and he turned it into wealth,
    Took sickness and disease and he turned it into health.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    What's anybody indebted to him for?
    Nothin', they say.
    He just likes to cause war.
    Pride and prejudice and superstition indeed,
    They wait for this bully like a dog waits to feed.
    He's the neighborhood bully.

    What has he done to wear so many scars?
    Does he change the course of rivers?
    Does he pollute the moon and stars?
    Neighborhood bully, standing on the hill,
    Running out the clock, time standing still,
    Neighborhood bully.
    ]

  6. darth daedelus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 14, 1999
    star 1
    I don't think Dylan's a prophet, although he had a good go during his religious phase.
  7. ParanoidAni-droid Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 27, 2001
    star 4

    [image=http://www.newvideo.com/dontlookback/images/slice_2.gif]

    Great! We finally got some zimmers in here! :D

    its a pretty good commentary on whats happening with The US and the Middle East right now, even though it came out years ago.

    See what I mean? Prophetic! :) Honestly, many of his songs still ring true to this day. As I stated in the old thread, when I saw him performing this past fall, just after the 9/11 crisis, it seemed like he wrote those songs with the current climate of discontent in mind even though they were recored decades earlier. When he played "Masters of War", I thought I was experincing nirvana. :)

    I did a college dissertation on his Bobness, but none of its online.

    Well... what are you waiting for? ;) If there's anything you can add here, I'm sure it could only stimulate some more discussion. This is, after all, a discussion thread.

    I really have to finish that bio summary. Ah, it can wait.

    ~PAd



  8. Darth Zane Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 21, 2000
    star 4
    I love Dylan, and i think he's the greatest songwriter of the 20th century. But I don't think he's prophetic.
  9. Isbeth Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2001
    star 4
    No, to answer the question. He was just a guy with a terrible voice who happened to write some extremely memorable songs.
  10. Darth Zane Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 21, 2000
    star 4
    He doesn't have a terrible voice! He has an awesome voice!
  11. Muppet Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 10, 2002
    star 1
    I think Dylan has a very under-rated voice. Admittedely it did go off a bit around about the 30th anniversary concert time in the 90`s. He tours too much and it takes its out on his voice. But listen to the work of genius that is 1997`s `Time out of Mind` and tell me that he has a bad voice!
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