Dylan on Dylan, ad. infi.
September 26, 2004 6:12 AM   Subscribe

"It was surprising how thick the smoke had become. It seems like the world has always needed a scapegoat --someone to lead the charge against the Roman Empire. But America wasn't the Roman Empire and someone else would have to step up and volunteer. I really was never any more than what I was -- a folk musician who gazed into the gray mist with tear-blinded eyes and made up songs that floated in a luminous haze. Now it had blown up in my face and was hanging over me." -- from Bob Dylan's new autobiography, Chronicles, with a brief interview, via Newsweek
posted by digaman (14 comments total)
It gives a whole new meaning to Hey! You kids get off my lawn!
posted by y2karl at 7:12 AM on September 26, 2004

This is good news. Thanks, digaman, I was totally unaware that this was coming. Sounds like Bob is still equal parts compelling and confounding.
posted by planetkyoto at 7:19 AM on September 26, 2004

This could prove interesting. He is from my home town, which he never talks about, I am guessing because how he was treated 'back in the day.'

Amazon says the book is due October 12th. A complete lyrics collection is being released the same timeframe.
posted by fluffycreature at 7:27 AM on September 26, 2004

Holy macanarsels, Margeret! Talking about mixed metaphors.

Just remember what Opus (Berkeley Breathed) said:

"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make a silk purse out of a pig in a poke."
posted by kablam at 8:19 AM on September 26, 2004

The excerpt sounds like it's giving context for some kind of confession. Not that that's what will be in the book, just a commentary on style. I'm a'gonna read it when it comes out though.
posted by Hildago at 10:03 AM on September 26, 2004

mixed metaphors

That's why Dylan is one of the great artists of our lifetime, and not your 7th grade English teacher.
posted by digaman at 10:19 AM on September 26, 2004

i'm surprised at how direct he is in this excerpt ... he's not known for that ... the book should be very interesting
posted by pyramid termite at 10:44 AM on September 26, 2004

His famous 1966 motorcycle accident gets a single sentence, and there's nothing about his 1977 divorce, his 1978 conversion to evangelical Christianity.
That's too much of nothing, if you ask me. I wonder why, in reading this excerpt, I don't believe a word he says. He portrays what he expects us to believe was a long struggle to achieve obscurity. Come on. He should admit his mixed motives. I believe that he wanted the suburban house with the white picket fence as he says he did, but that he also was greedy for money, power, chicks, and all the other great stuff his fame and current-ness gave him access to. You know, most artists seem to have no problem whatsoever in becoming anonymous or obscure. Even very great and famous ones. Make your own list.
Stylistically, the except reads a lot like Chuck Berry's autobiography, released in the 1980s, and written entirely by Mr. Berry without a ghost writer. In other words: Pretty unreadable. There are the same sophomoric alliterations, stilted phraseologies, and arrhythmic meanderings. Now, I belive both men are incredible lyricists. But the moment they step into prose, they're way out of their depth. Both should have hired ghosts. Bob Dylan should have hired Dave Berry. And I say that with all respect.
posted by Faze at 1:03 PM on September 26, 2004

After a while you learn that privacy is something you can sell, but you can't buy it back.

The excerpt reminded me alot of his songs, actually. Didn't always make sense to me all strung together, but little spots of brilliance here and there.
posted by onlyconnect at 1:16 PM on September 26, 2004

i would save dylan's fingernail from a burning house before any of you.
posted by Satapher at 4:51 PM on September 26, 2004

Dylan wrote every damn song ever worth listening to... His words mean so much to so many whether he intended that or not. This book will just be more Dylan words... Can't wait!

Dylan is god! :)
posted by LouReedsSon at 6:54 PM on September 26, 2004

They'd look into my eyes as if to find some evidence of bourbon and handfuls of amphetamines. I had no idea what they were thinking.

So Dylan doesn't perform drunk, as I've often heard?
posted by namespan at 7:03 PM on September 26, 2004

So Dylan doesn't perform drunk, as I've often heard?

that still leaves a hefty spectrum of otherly love
posted by Satapher at 7:31 PM on September 26, 2004

I wonder what the global musical landscape would look like if every performer who played music drunk or high was purged from the heavenly record.
posted by digaman at 7:54 PM on September 26, 2004

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