Another Self Portrait — a review in sonata form

Slow intro, setting the theme One reviewer of this latest release in the Bootleg Series asks: “Remember the first time you heard Blonde On Blonde, or John Wesley Harding?” He is somehow implying that Another Self Portrait is the same kind of experience, having to do somehow with reinvention, recreation. Well, what can I say? […]


Bliss, understanding, and power

Ten points to those who know which important document the following quotation comes from: If one group of people wears white clothes in mourning and another group puts on black, the sentiment of each group will be adjusted according to these two colours, i.e., one group rejects the black colour on such an occasion while […]


Someone Please Fire Jack Frost

… or at least his little helper. You know, the little guy who sneaks in when Mr Frost has gone for lunch, and turns knobs that are best left alone. His intentions may be the noblest, but as we all know, Satan sometimes comes as a Man of Peace. Frost, who also goes by the […]


“Say Only That Which You Have Figured Out Yourself”

These are the words of Thomas Blachman, the guy who has divided more water in Denmark than anyone since Moses (not that Moses was active in Denmark, but you know what I mean), the judge in Danish X Factor who according to some is a sadist who takes delight in sending aspiring stars home to […]


Can’t Wait

Two things in particular make Tell Tale Signs a god-send for the Dylan analyst. One is that it shows how tightly interconnected Dylan’s last three albums are, not only musically but also lyrically: text fragments and themes float between them as if they were part of the same triple album. The other is that it […]


Dylan At His Very Best

When is Dylan at his best these days? When he pulls out his guitar once and again? Or perhaps delivers a blistering harp solo? Or when he soars to the top of his vocal register in a beautifully raw rendition of an old warhorse? Or is it on his albums, the three great artistic and […]


The Uneven Heart — Bob Dylan The Musician

Most of my posts begin “it’s been a while”, it seems, and so does this one. This time, it’s been a self-imposed silence, because I’ve been busy finishing a book on lauda singing in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries — perhaps not your cup of tea, but it’s what I do for a living. Anyway, […]