Nobel Prize

'Bob Dylan Is the Shakespeare of Our Time'—Penn Jillette on the Nobel Prize Winner

Dylan has constantly changed, not out of some sense of desperate need to stay current or hip but out of a deep urge to explore himself and the world around him.

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Vitoria Gasteiz, Wikimeida, Creative Commons

Bob Dylan has been awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature "for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition."

As justified as the prize is, the award committee's words are an understatement. In a career that spans 50-plus years, Dylan's impact has long exceeded popular music, influencing every arena of creative expression, from film to writing to politics.

While it's impossible—and perhaps ultimately pointless—to distill the essence of the figure behind songs, albums, and prose as different as "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall," "Like a Rolling Stone," Blood on the Tracks, Slow Train Coming, Time Out of Mind, Chronicles, and Shadows in the Night, I'll take my chances. Among other things, Dylan incarnates the urge for endless self-discovery that is at the very heart of America's mythic identity. We are a nation that is always in the act of becoming something different, something new, something at once influenced by the past but free (or struggling to be free) of it. "He not busy being born is busy dying," he sings in "It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)."

More than any popular artist (including writers and filmmakers), Dylan has constantly changed his style, sound, look, and personality over time, not out of some sense of desperate need to stay current or hip but out of a deep urge to explore himself and the world around him. As he sings in "Tangled Up in Blue," he's always "still on the road, heading for another joint." Almost alone among the crew of folk artists he palled around with in Greenwich Village in the early 1960s, he didn't see himself as a rigid guardian of a newly invented orthodoxy that couldn't or shouldn't change. Rather, he used folk forms to express himself before moving on to rock, country, jazz, rhythm and blues, Christianity, Judaism, the pop standards of his youth and teen years, and more.

As he writes at the close of Chronicles, his 2004 memoir that is (to me, anyway) the greatest sustained burst of Beat writing,

The folk music scene had been like a paradise that I had to leave, like Adam had to leave the garden. It was just too perfect. In a few years' time a shit storm would be unleashed. Things would begin to burn. Bras, draft cards, American flags, bridges, too—everybody would be dreaming of getting in on. The national psyche would change and in a lot of ways would resemble the Night of the Living Dead. The road out would be treacherous, and I didn't know where it owuld lead but I followed it anyway. It was a strange world ahead that would unfold, a thunderhead of a world with jagged lightning edges. Many got it wrong and never did get it right. I went straight into it. It was wide open. One thing for sure, not only was it not run by God, but it wasn't run by the devil either.

That strange world is still unfolding for him and he inspires us on our own explorations.

Below is a snippet of a recent interview Reason conducted with Penn Jillette that ended with a discussion of what the magician finds so inspiring about Dylan, whom he calls the Shakespeare of our time.

If we have anybody who's Shakespeare in our time, it's Dylan, and he just speaks to me more and more, and he once said in an interview that the purpose of art was to inspire, and when you see a Dylan show….You would think he's so good, you know—if you go see a jazz cat who's so good playing bass, you can leave that show going, "Why even pick up a bass again?" But for some reason—and I'm not the only one that feels this—at the end of the Dylan show, art just seems so good. I want to go write a play, or write a novel. I'll stay up all night and write a song. And you don't care that it's not as good.

The other thing that I love about Dylan is he is a freak, not a cheerleader. When you go see Springsteen, it's all this inclusive stuff, you know? Don't we all love girls and cars, and don't we all have an economic downturn? And don't we all want justice? And we're all here, and "Yeah!" and "Whew!" and "Let's go!" it's this feeling of comradery. The whole show, everybody's Bruce Springsteen, and you might want to make comparisons between Springsteen and Dylan, and I think you would be completely wrong because, even if they both have gravely voices and both come from the same traditions, he's a cheerleader, and that's good. There's nothing wrong with that, but Dylan just stands there and says, "I am speaking for me. Maybe some of this is true for you to. I don't know. But I'm digging so deep." All of his mining, you know, is going towards his heart and deeper into his brain. He makes no attempt, that I can tell, to say, "Oh yeah, this is gonna kill 'em. This is what they'll like."—Penn Jillette

For full interview and video, go here.

Selected Reason coverage of Bob Dylan over the years:

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  1. Here’s hoping that history looks back on 2016 as the last desperate gasp of the Baby Boomers for relevance before they’re stuffed and mounted in museum dioramas as a cautionary tale for future generations.

    1. Hear, hear!

      1. My co-worker’s step-sister makes $97 hourly on the laptop . She has been out of work for six months but last month her paycheck was $14100 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Go this website and click to tech tab to start your work… http://tinyurl.com/hhwe4zl

      2. My co-worker’s step-sister makes $97 hourly on the laptop . She has been out of work for six months but last month her paycheck was $14100 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Go this website and click to tech tab to start your work… http://tinyurl.com/hhwe4zl

    2. As a baby boomer, it sucks that I have to agree.

      1. Ditto

    3. Too bad most people don’t appreciate Frank Zappa.

      1. “This is the dog talking.”

        1. “That’s why I’m movin’ to Montana!”

          1. I guess I know which album I am ringing up today when I take my daily constitutional.

            1. “An Evening With Wild Man Fischer”? 😉

              1. Apostrophe.

                1. And duh!!!!!!!!

            2. Dynamo Hum!!

            3. You Can’t Do That On Stage Anymore #1 – The Torture Never Stops

      2. I like that most people don’t ‘get’ Frank’s work. I appreciate his stuff.
        I appreciate more for what he stood for.

        1. Like your handle, love X.

          Going to see John Doe in November, but not sure it’s going to be everything I want it to be.

      3. Sometimes he was funny and witty. Like a lot of other prominent boomers, much of the time he was stuck way up his own ass.

    4. The ‘ greatest generation ‘ gave us FDR,Truman,LBJ and Nixon and and the ‘boomers’ [ and I’m one ] learned all the wrong lessons.

      1. Is it that the wrong lessons were learned or that no one took the time to actually think about what the right lesson should be?

    5. Hugh, that comment is literature right there.

    6. Generational bluster/cheerleading/bashing is kinda stupid.

      1. …but kinda common. Tune in to NPR/PBS for the nightly baby boomer apotheosis.

    7. Collectivism now, collectivism forever!

      What a great libertarian, Hugh! Such an individualist!

  2. I really don’t know which of the following is more nonsensical:
    1. Bob Dylan’s lyrics
    2. Gillespie’s article about Bob Dylan
    3. Jillette’s comparison of Bob Dylan with Shakespeare

    FFS: I know my penchant for metal (both traditional heavy metal i.e. Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest) and some death metal (Amon Amarth) puts me a distance away from this topic, but what is this fucking baby boomer love affair with this mumbling hippy-dippy bullshit?

    1. If the writer is “digging so deep”, then what is the fucking point? Shakespeare didn’t “dig deep”. He wrote for the common man. His plays are about universal things: love, tragic flaws, heroism tempered with reality, looking for the humor in everyday life, etc.

      1. With that, he unwittingly made the case Springsteen and Shakespeare are more aligned.

        And honestly, the lyrics in ‘Darkness on the Edge of Town’ are among the finest in the annals of rock. Where, I think I agree, is Springsteen can be dark he does leave an opening things can and perhaps will get better. I kinds like that personally.

        1. +1 Desolation Row

      2. Yeah, but if you read Shakespeare, you are immediately struck with awe – how the fuck did he think to word it like that? Dylan’s lyrics are not impressive. They don’t stand on their own as poetry.

        1. People will still be reading Shakespeare 100 years from now. Listening to Dylan, not so much.

    2. Still protesting the Vietnam War.

      1. Are you for it now?

        1. Hey, it did give us Apocalypse Now.

    3. As a fellow lover of metal, I completely agree with you. To a large extent, metal was a reaction against Dylan and the hippie flower-power nonsense of the 60s. The Nobel Prize committee is just high on Member Berries – “Member the sixties?”

      I was never a huge fan of Dylan, though I admit he has some great songs. The test for me, though, would be to read the lyrics without the music, which I just did. My reaction is “meh.” I don’t see the greatness. There is no clever use of the English language or any particularly striking metaphors – two criteria I personally use to judge quality of language use in a piece of literature.

      1. You are absolutely right. Black Sabbath kind of started it, sort of like “I get what you are saying about war and poverty, but you dipshits are fucking pussies”. But then the New Wave of British Heavy Metal is truly what took it to the next step. (Of course there was bands like AC/DC and a few other hard rock stuff in the 70s, that was cool, but pretty much just like party rock, like what Van Halen was in its heyday).

        And for me, you are also right on about lyrics. I can read Iron Maiden’s lyrics without guitars or drums and it is still cool. They tell great stories. I would challenge any of this hippie crap to compare to The Number of the Beast, or The Trooper, or Hallowed Be Thy Name. (Hell their newest album is still awesome!) Or even Paschendale.

        1. I remember listening to ‘War pigs’ and thinking, ‘fuck yeah.’

        2. I personally prefer Dickinson’s lyrics to Steve Harris’ lyrics, and was very happy when he came back (even though I love his solo work). I have not checked out their most recent album, but I bet it is good. Dance of Death is one of my favorite songs of their, and they put it out after being together almost 30 years. Check out this acoustic version.

          1. I love that song! Check out The Book of Souls. Empire of the Clouds is even longer than Rime of the Ancient Mariner, but it is very cool (and a little different.) The only song I even remotely liked with Blayze Bailey was The Clansman. (In all fairness to him, he did bring a little of Paul Di’Anno) but while Steve Harris is the brain and the internal leader, and I love his bass rhythms, Bruce is the public face and his vocals I think are what puts them over the top for me. That and for the last 15 years or so, they have been able to stick with 3 lead guitarists without having their egos get in the way!

          2. Emily Dickinson’s lyrics?

        3. Iron Maiden songs all sound the same.

    4. I am a huge metal head and I love Bob Dylan, lyrically he is fucking awesome. In fact, he really never injects politics into his music, isn’t your typical boomer “BearOdinson” give him a listen.

  3. Has someone told Lou Reed?

    1. Lou would have got it, but you have to be alive to be eligible. I mean, I’ll put Sister Ray up against anything Dylan wrote.

      1. I’d put Dr. Suess up against anything that Dylan wrote…true boomer suckage

        1. not to mention that stupid fucking hat…

  4. Nick has no room to mock Rolling Stone after a post like this.

  5. Chuck Berry wuz robbed.

    1. +1 My Ding-A-Ling

    2. By the White Supremacist Nobel committee

  6. I do not care for Dylan. I prefer Harry Chapin.

    1. “Cat’s in the Cradle” gets me every time.

      1. It’s a good song,Taxi is my favorite.

  7. Shakespeare: “This above all: to thine own self be true.”
    Dylan: “The pump don’t work ’cause the vandals took the handle.”

    Yeah, I see a resemblance.

    1. well themz all words and such, right?

  8. Meh. I never understood the Dylan worship.

    Playing even halfway decent harmonica is really not that difficult, yet somehow it forever escaped Bob.

    1. In fairness Blues Traveller is going to likely share next years Noble.

      1. Barnes & Noble?

    2. I always figured he deliberately didn’t learn to play the harmonica. Or perhaps even knew how, but didn’t.

      To me, Dylan seems like one of those artists where his own personality is the art as much as his music. While I’m not a huge fan of his music, I can appreciate how he liked (and continues to like) fucking with people.

      1. To me, Dylan seems like one of those artists where his own personality is the art as much as his music. While I’m not a huge fan of his music, I can appreciate how he liked (and continues to like) fucking with people.

        ^ This.

        He developed a persona, a voice. That’s about it. Even the man himself has always said that he’s way overrated, and he’s spent his career trolling his worshippers. “Voice of a generation? Check out my new album, Nashville Skyline!”

  9. Shakespeare is still the Shakespeare of our time. Bob Dylan is a mumbling has-been whose accolades far outstrip his talent. Also, he owes me twenty bucks for the barely coherent set he muttered through several years ago.

    1. The Shakespeare comparison is overused. There was and is only one Shakespeare, only one Dante, only one Virgil. The greats are unique – there is, as you say, no “Shakespeare of our time” – there is only Shakespeare for all time (although even Shakespeare is overrated).

      If anything, Dylan is the Percy Shelley of our time. He has a lot of the same strengths and weaknesses.

    2. True. As Ayn Rand opined, Shakespeare was a forerunner of Naturalism. Both Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen’s artistic styles are Naturalism. Dylan throws in surrealism but his focus is the same as Shakespeare’s, mainly “Shit Happens”.

    3. so you saw him at the height of his career then…

  10. I look at the lyrics to “Masters of War”, and I think Geezer Butler has Dylan beat–both with “War Pigs” and “Children of the Grave”.

    1. Couldn’t agree more. Or see Tool’s Right In Two for some great anti-war lyrics.

  11. I was listening to the radio the other day and i heard that there was some music awards show happening, and that the winners this year were =

    – Bruce Springstein
    – Madonna
    – Prince

    I dont remember wtf Bruce was up for, but Madonna was getting some award for her live tour, and Prince *(PBUH) was being posthumously tonguebathed for some remake of Purple Rain.

    What struck me was the absurdity of the fact that we are still handing out awards to these pop-star geezers 30+ years after they were actually relevant.

    Throw Dylan in there. Ok, Time Out Of Mind was a decent record. *That was*(@(*&@ 20 years ago*. Then you had scorsese re-hashing the guys life

    For fucks sake, will someone kill the boomers already? PLEASE? Enough already. Im sick of your shit.

    1. What struck me was the absurdity of the fact that we are still handing out awards to these pop-star geezers 30+ years after they were actually relevant.

      Having heard a number of recent pop songs reference the likes of Michelle Pfeiffer and Mic Jagger as sex symbols without peer and/or in a contemporary sense, I’m pretty convinced that they’ve inflicted brain damage on at least the next two generations of pop media/culture. Not that I don’t think they are or were ever sexy but certainly not with any exceptional talent or historically so.

    2. No Direction Home was a decent documentary. I loved the early footage with Robbie and Rick Danko.

      1. Sure. If it stopped there id give dylan as pass as being given the attention and praise hes due.

        a nobel @#*& prize? Fuck that non-singing grumpy poetic christfag

        1. He didn’t give himself the Nobel prize, you know.

          I’m not sure it’s quite fair to hold that against him.

          1. In the past he actually had remarkable class in staying the hell out of idol-worship. He not only didnt go to woodstock, he dissed it and hippies in general as being sort of silly and narcissistic.

            But since he found jesus and has gotten sort of grandfatherly, he seems willing to let people blow sunshine up his ass. Blame him? not really, but i think its fair to say hes become the sort of thing he often mocked.

        2. You think Octavio Paz deserves it more?

    3. There’s ONE MORE Woodstock movie/doc in them. I can feel it.

      1. Woodstock at 50

    4. Meh. I’m sure people are starting to get sick of Gen-X’s shit by now too.

      1. Meh. I’m sure people are starting to get sick of Gen-X’s shit by now too.

        Eh, there aren’t enough of us to be ubiquitously annoying — it’s Boomers casting a shadow ahead of us & their Millennial progeny behind us. We have to be surgical in our annoyance.

    5. Madonna’s has been the highest selling tour for a long time.

      Prince is dead, and yeah, the media is always overzealous in its memorialization of dead celebrities.

      It’s not some boomer conspiracy. You’re being absurd and whiny. Typical Gen X’er?

  12. Like all entertainment awards, the Nobel Prize for Literature is nothing more than a group of self-appointed elites sitting around a conference table to determine which of the things they like to canonize as essential reading for cultural literacy.

    We’re fortunate to live in a time when the proliferation of media channels and entertainment options frees us from the need for gatekeepers or tastemakers. We’ll be more fortunate still when we take full advantage of that infrastructure and totems like awards and canons and mainstreams are left to rot in the dustbin of history.

    1. [tings brandy glass with monocle, waves cigar]

    2. You are on a roll, Hugh. All value is subjective, and this award just reflects the subjective preferences of the committee, with an extra dose of appeal to authority.

      1. and no small amount of douche bagginess

    3. Dylan never won a Grammy in all those years until a lifetime achievement award. And recording is what he did.
      I suspect that the Nobel Comittee wanted to recognize the Beats and Dylan was an associate. He was a safer choice than say Ginsberg or Kerauac and to boot he’s still alive.

      1. Plus, when you sit down with the catalog of material by Ginsberg and Kerouac that was any good, Dylan probably has them beat even if you count them together.

        1. so angels dancing on the head of a pin?

    4. Of course, much of those media channels are either run by the same group of people, or follow them.

  13. Sees post title, rolls eyes, makes wanking motion.

  14. I’m a boomer.
    I like Dylan’s work but am not a fan of the man.
    This award has no impact on my opinion of either.

  15. No the fuck he is not. What nonsense.

  16. That ongoing discussion of overrated artists. You can throw Dylan on the top of the heap.

    1. I liked his work with the Wilburys.

    2. I liked his work with the Wilburys.

      1. I thoroughly enjoy Alice’s Restaurant whenever I hear. But most of his singing sounds like he is whining through a mouth full of marbles.

        1. Alice’s Restaurant was Arlo Guthrie.

          1. Well, I fucked that up. Latent Alzheimer’s I guess.

            So, I don’t like anything that Dylan has ever done.

            1. I was actually going to post about Alice’s Restaurant – that would’ve been the joke.

        2. Probably because they only play it twice around Thanksgiving and then you get a break for another year.

  17. A Nobel prize now? What about Blond on Blond? Or Desire? Is this some sort of lifetime achievement award?

  18. I saw Dylan in 2004 and it was possibly the worst show I’ve ever attended. The only song I could even figure out he was playing was All Along the Watchtower. Otherwise it was incoherent, band not playing together, Dylan mumbling.

    1. I too was robbed by Dylan, just sitting in a chair mumbling under the music of a jazz band. Hands the worste concert I’ve ever been too, and I’ve been to a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles concert.

    2. It was Jillette’s point: Dylan doesn’t give a fuck if you liked his concert. He got everything he needs. He’s an artist. He don’t look back.
      He can put out a good studio album because the sound engineers can make him coherent. In concert. Not so much.
      He has so many great songs covered by so many people, you can enjoy him through others.

      1. It’s not his fault that suckers keep buying expensive tickets to see him.

        1. Thankfully I didn’t pay for the tickets. My wife’s parents did. Because they are boomers and think Dylan is great.

      2. Dylan has always sounded pretty good when sung by other people

    3. That seems to be a consistent thing. That’s what the concert I saw in 1993 was like too.

      1. Yeah – I saw him in 1991 and didn’t recognize most songs until I was able to randomly understand a lyric 2/3-3/4 of the way through. And then even knowing the lyrics, I still couldn’t understand him for the rest of the song. He seemed bored to tears and desperately trying to entertain himself by making all of his songs completely unrecognizable. And I’m not convinced he remembered all the words and wasn’t just slurring random syllables together at times.

        OTOH, I could understand by that point saying “if I have to sing “Mr. Tambourine Man” one more fucking time I’m going to shoot myself.”

    4. That is exactly what happened to me when I saw him in 2004/2005. The only things I remember about that concert were his yellow nudie suit, the fact that I couldn’t figure out a single song that was being played, and that I hadn’t seen that many gray haired hippies puking in the aisles of a venue before.

  19. When will the Nobel committee’s anti-Canadian bias go away so we can finally give the Nobel prize for literature to Gordon Lightfoot? My guess? It won’t be anytime soon.

    1. + 1 Edmund Fitzgerald

      1. Sundown you better take care

    2. Didn’t Alive Munro win a few years back?

    3. If you could read my mind, Nobel Committee
      What a tale my thoughts could tell
      Just like an old-time movie
      ‘Bout a ghost from a wishin’ well
      In a castle dark or a fortress strong
      With chains upon my feet
      You know that ghost is me
      And I will never be set free
      As long as I’m a ghost that you can’t see

  20. Did anyone reach out to Lou Reed for his thoughts?

    1. When I heard about Dylan winning the prize, I initially expected that it would be an announcement of his death.

    2. he has thoughts?

  21. He wrote a lot of words. I’ll give him credit for that.

  22. Well deserved indeed. But since it’s an award, to him I am sure, he only hears the locusts singing. He used to care, but things have changed.

  23. “The road out would be treacherous, and I didn’t know where it owuld lead but I followed it anyway.”

    Apparently the prerequisite for good literature doesn’t include good grammar.

    Goodness gracious.

    1. You got that right. Ever read James Joyce?

      Any idiot can put together a coherent sentence.

      1. James Joyce is unreadable to me. English professors love him for some reason.

        1. cause any interpretation is obviously ok, no thought required…

  24. Are we seriously comparing plays and sonnets written in iambic pentameter featuring full realized, three-dimensional characters to the verbose pseudo-intellectual dribble Dylan wrote?

    That’s not to say Shakespeare didn’t write shit plays for money not unlike a modern screenwriter but still, I think it’s clear whose volume of work is more impressive.

    1. Just wait 10 yrs when Kanye West gets a Nobel Prize for his version of Shakespeare.

      1. Imma let you finish, Bard…

  25. Bob Dylan as Shakespeare? Yich. He’s was like one of those guys who hung out with brooding hipsters and then went back to his gated mansion in Malibu and turned his nose up at people at the unwashed protesting the Vietnam War. With the possible exception of Nirvana, the most overrated musical act of the modern era.

    Gwen Stefani is ten times better.

  26. Has Nick run out of adjectives yet?

    1. Were you appalled at the commodification of dissent that Dylan represented while you were shooting it out with Reds in ‘Nam?

      1. You seem to think getting drafted was just a big party.
        Fucking scumbag…

        1. I would have gone to Canada. Proletarians shooting it out with proletariat a’int my bag. You should have picked up a bango like Dylan did and make fat stacks.

          1. We can always use more people like you.

            1. Do people whine about how immigrants are moochers on Welfare and think casting a vote for a blowhard plutocrat is striking a blow against elitism in Canada. I want to move to a country that complains a lot less. America is too 4-year old toddler for me. Just feeling the waters. Tell me more about Canada.

          2. american socialist|10.13.16 @ 12:57PM|#
            “I would have gone to Canada”

            Sure you would have.
            This from the fucking scumbag who didn’t have the morality to pay his goddam mortgage.
            You’d have been the boot-licking slime in basic training…

            1. Puh-leeze. I’m smart enough not to fight for this low rent, tinpot plutocracy. Give me a break. War is a racket in general, but fighting a war so that oil companies can profit and politicians can wave the flag for votes? No thanks.

              1. Vietnam was about oil company profits, eh?

                *backs slowly away, hoping to avoid contagion*

                1. Hell, even the Crusades were about oil company profits. It’s just the bourgeois plutocratic propaganda that has brainwashed us into believing otherwise. I mean, der – whey do you think they happened in the Middle East?

              2. american socialist|10.13.16 @ 2:05PM|#
                “Puh-leeze. I’m smart enough not to fight for this low rent, tinpot plutocracy.”
                You’re too fucking dumb to pay a mortgage, scumbag.

                “Give me a break. War is a racket in general,”
                Tell that to Wilson, FDR, Kennedy, JFK, Obo and that miserable lying warmongering hag.
                Oh, and fuck off.

  27. Honestly, I see Dylan as the god father to modern day rappers – rhyming as an “art form”. Hickory dickory dock – That’s Bob Dylan to me.

    1. Although the masters make the rules
      For the wise men and the fools
      I got nothing, Ma, to live up to

    2. I’m surprised nobody’s ever covered Subterranean as a rap song. The lyrics don’t have to be changed, just replace the guitar with a bass line.

      1. Weird Al does a stupendous send up in his palindromic ‘Bob’. Check it out on YouTube. Clever stuff.

        1. Thanks, I’ll give it a look.

  28. I’m not going to lie to you about it – I’d probably as soon attend a Justin Beiber concert as a Bob Dylan concert, the music would be better and the fans less obnoxious. Call me a cretin, but I never got woke to Bob Dylan, never had the slightest idea what the hell he was caterwauling about nor had the slightest interest in finding out. If you got something to say, write me a letter, it’s what smart people have been using as a superior communication tool for dozens of years.

    1. (I can’t help but notice that Nick and Meredith here, when they had something to say about Dylan, wrote an article – they didn’t direct us to a youtube video featuring a song-and-interpretive-dance number expressing their opinion, did they? Although I probably would pay good money to see The Jacket doing an interpretive dance number.)

      1. Putting on the ritz!

    2. Just like I never understood all the voices of my generation (80s/90s) from Pearl Jam to Nirvana to Madonna to U2 to Prince (yeh him too) to whatever and all those over spills from the 70s. I just took in the music without all the fucking over-bearing syrupy ‘voices of a generation’ crap that went with it.

      Word: Ronnie fucking Lane or Ray fucking Davies.

    3. I remember seeing Dylan live at Memphis in May in the 90s. I didn’t go there to see him specifically, but it was there. I was actually surprised at how good a show it was. Maybe it was the acid, I don’t know.

  29. One thing for sure, not only was it not run by God, but it wasn’t run by the devil either.

    That all changed on Inauguration day, in January 2017….

  30. Are they going to get Tom Petty to translate his acceptance speech to English from Wilbury?

  31. I mostly see Dylan as a monumental real-life troll (and not just for his looks). His whole career has been inventing and reinventing his persona and messing with his fans and other people who took it all too seriously. And I have a lot of respect for that. Earnest people looking for someone to follow need messing with.

    Anyone hear his Christmas album from a few years ago? The whole thing is a hilarious joke.

    I don’t have much of an opinion on whether his lyrics are actually great poetry. But I sort of hope that at the Nobel Prize party thing he announces that his more absurdist sort of lyrics were just deliberate gibberish he put out just to see how seriously people would take it after he got sick of being seen as the voice of the hippy war protest set.

    1. You’re actually not far off in a couple of respects. He said that he found it strange that people were searching for some deep meaning in his lyrics, when the reality was he was just looking for words that rhymed.

      In an interview on 60 Minutes Ed Bradley said that he heard he wrote Blowin in the Wind in 10 minutes, and he asked him how he did it. Dylan said it was just a place he was in at the time…no explanation. Bradley asked him if he can still do that, and Dylan said no. Then he added, “But I can do other things.”

    2. That Christmas album is the perfect bait. It enrages people.

      I file it alongside The Shaggs and Beat Happening records. (Except I genuinely enjoy those.)

  32. SOY BOMB!!

  33. My mothers neighbour is working part time and averaging $9000 a month. I’m a single mum and just got my first paycheck for $6546! I still can’t believe it. I tried it out cause I got really desperate and now I couldn’t be happier. Heres what I do,

    ————–>>>> http://YoutubeJobs.Nypost55.com

  34. What BS

  35. The thing is Bob Dylan doesn’t actually give a fuck. He’s just playing the old bluesman / Robert Johnson x Woody Guthrie wannabe, which he’s always wanted to be.

    You’re the ones who contort yourselves over banal awards and commendations. Boo fucking hoo.

    “Greatest fascist dictator: Adolf Hitler.”

  36. The music from when I was 15 to 30 is the best ever.

    -every man

  37. This makes about as much sense as Arafat and Obama winning the Peace Prize. And I say this as someone who generally likes listening to a lot of Dylan’s stuff.

  38. I dunno. Wasn’t Shakespeare really popular among the common people?

    Bob Dylan seems to be only loved (or relevant) among journalists

    1. I mean, really, how often do you hear a song of his on the radio? Pretty much only the Hendrix version of All Along the Watchtower

  39. Nobel prizes in nonscientific fields are getting pretty lame.

  40. I was rooting for Ray Wylie Hubbard.

    1. and his idiot brother L. Ron?

  41. Oh, please. The man wrote some decent songs, but comparing him to shakespeare? Give me a break.

    -jcr

  42. He’s not the Shakespeare of our time. He’s a wannabe who stole the limelight by lying about his background. Then charmed his way into the britches of some famous women and stole their audiences. Then took advantage of a disenfranchised generation with satirical lyrics. Once he didn’t have anybody to lead the way and leach off of he bombed. Turned religious. And should now be considered a foot note of the 60s.

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  46. We are a nation that is always in the act of becoming something different, something new, something at once influenced by the past but free (or struggling to be free) of it.

    At least you don’t claim “something better”.

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  49. Damn, and I thought Idiocracy was solely a USA future. It’s good to see it has globalized.

    But it my opinion, Dylan’s shit is all fucked up. Shoulda gone to Snoop Dog, yo. F’shizzle the nobizzle.

  50. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….

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  51. until I looked at the paycheck saying $4730 , I did not believe that…my… brother woz like actualy bringing in money part time from there computar. . there friend brother started doing this for less than 7 months and resently paid for the morgage on there home and bought a new Cadillac …….

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