The following conversation took place in 2005 in front of an audience at the Telluride film festival in Colorado, after a screening of Martin Scorsese’s documentary, Bob Dylan: No Direction Home.
DooWop Nation Not to get all Pepsi Blue on your collective ass, but I have been luxuriating in the Proper box sets The Dawn Of Doo-Wop (tracklist) and Doo Wop Delights (tracklist and discography) and thought to construct a post around the topic of the original postwar--as World War II--black harmony singing style, of which, as Greil Marcus notes in his Lipstick Traces, there were 15,000 records recorded after World War II--a DIY phenomenom which he compares to rise of punk... (more inside, naturally)
From one of the most underrated performers on the 1960's came one of the most mysterious records of all time, which inspired not only a movie but an answer record from none other than Bob Dylan. Greil Marcus devotes a chunk of a book(ostensibly about Dylan) to "Ode," where he makes connections between it and Bonnie & Clyde, released around the same time. Someone once said that "Ode To Billy Joe" sounded ancient the day it came out and that may be some part of it's appeal. I remeber hearing the song on oldies stations as a kid and even then being drawn into the mystery of it. I listened to it as I typed this post and I'm still plumbing it's depths today.