Bob Dylan

by Patricia from Elkins

Rolling Stone pays tribute to Bob Dylan: "Hailed by Life magazine as one of the 100 most important Americans of the 20th century, folk-rock singer-songwriter Bob Dylan not only revolutionized popular music by incorporating poetry into his compositions, he also helped create a more inclusive and progressive social consciousness in American culture."

Bob Dylan wrote in his song, Jokerman, "You were born with a snake in both of your fists while a hurricane was blowing." He couldn't wait for the music to change. He had to be the change itself: not just a partial influence but all of it. He was able to put all the different types of music together and found words to go along. He made the world make sense to the people who listened.

Robert Allan Zimmerman, better known as Bob Dylan, was born in Duluth, Minnesota on May 24, 1941. He played guitar and harmonica in a high school band, then played folk songs in coffeehouses during his brief time as a college student. Moving to New York in 1960, he became a regular part of the Greenwich Village coffeehouse scene. He began making records in 1962. His original folk and protest songs made him a political figure, and one of the most popular singer/songwriters. Later he embraced pop, blues and rock, demonstrating an incredible range of talent. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.

During the 1991 Grammy Awards, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award. During his acceptance speech he mentioned things that his father told him when he was younger.

"Well, my daddy, he didn't leave me much, you know he was a very simple man, but what he did tell me was this, he did say, 'Son.' He said, 'you know it's possible to become so defiled in this world that your own father and mother will abandon you, and if that happens, God will always believe in your ability to mend your ways.'"

By sharing the advice that his father gave him, he let people understand his main principle. Dylan has a loyal following in the music world, and some people even think of him as a shaman, or prophet. He is respected for speaking his own truth, and that's why he's considered a hero as a musician.

Page created on 5/19/2006 9:47:31 AM

Last edited 5/19/2006 9:47:31 AM

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Related Links

Bob Dylan's official Web site
Isis - a magazine dedicated to Bob Dylan

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