A Review of Bob Dylan’s First Three Albums

 

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Bob Dylan’s early music is of course very good. His songs flow smoothly and are filled with various and complex ideas and feelings. But in those first five albums the music is also very rough. From his first album, the self-titled Bob Dylan, to his third album, Times They Are A-Changing, Dylan uses only a guitar; a harmonica and his own voice and each of those instruments are not used gently. Dylan’s Harmonica is loud, sudden and verging on grating, his voice leaves much to be desired, and most of the guitar playing on the three albums is sloppy and brittle sounding.

And yet, despite all of these drawbacks to Dylan’s performance, on Bob Dylan, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan and Times They A-Changing, Dylan manages to pound out some very beautiful melodies.

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If you look at a song like, “Honey, Just Allow Me One More Chance” off of The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, a song that is very rough in its instrumentation, you can hear a melody that comes through that rough instrumentation and even though it isn’t the most technical or pretty song that has ever been written, it does evoke some emotion through its core melody. This I think is what made Bob Dylan such a successful musician.

Now, of course, there are some more soft, beautiful songs on these first three albums, “Girl From The North Country” or “Boots Of Spanish Leather” or even “Song To Woody” is a little slower and a little softer, but even in those songs the simplicity of Dylan’s song writing shows itself very plainly, he does not layer his melodies and he adds very little electronic effects to the songs his albums. The song writing itself seems to be the number one priority in Bob Dylan’s music.

This priority pays off because even on these first three albums, that could all be considered to be classics in there own right, there are a couple songs that stand out, to me, as some of the greatest songs in Rock and Roll history, songs like, “Baby, Let Me Follow You Down” and “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright” and “The Times They Are A-Changin’” and “Masters of War”. If not the albums themselves, these songs stick out to me as past indications of what Bob Dylan would be doing next.

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And I Thank You, I Thank You for Doing Your Duty

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Some of my personal favourite Leonard Cohen songs

Leonard Cohen is a Canadian artist. That means a lot to me. He truly created some profound art. I loved discovering him and I loved how prolific he was. Today is a sad day.

  1. Everybody Knows – This song, a little more important now than ever before, rocked me when I was a teenager. It was exactly the sort of amazing mysterious song that you need to uncover when you’re a young. With the heavy backing melody mixed with the uplifting strings and Leonard Cohen’s deep voice, it is a very unique and wonderful song.
  1. So long, Marianne – I love the slow, offbeat rhythm guitar in this song. I love the lyric, “I thought was some kind of gypsy boy”. I love the background singers of the chorus. I love how it is a little sad and mostly uplifting. I love the violin and the experimentation.
  1. Teachers – Often Leonard Cohen songs can be powerful and forceful and none of them come at you like teachers. The powerful themes of self love and self harm are delivered to you with a cacophony of the tapping acoustic guitar.

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  1. One of Us Cannot Be Wrong – There are so many emotions to feel when I listen to this song. So many that are so deep.
  1. All Singers Must Die – Yes, it is a little morbid, but this song is really interesting and very poetic and a little funny and it is always worth a listen.
  1. The Smokey Life – a song of the seventies, maybe a little influenced by Motown. This song is so loving.
  1. Dance Me to End Of Love – This song is like a nightmare carnival, but also it’s also really fun? One of my favourite Cohen songs, Dance Me To The End Of Love shows his originality and creativity as an artist.`
  1. The Captain – Various Positions was such a weird album. This is one of the songs that made it that way. It seems kind of like a song that would open a children’s program or something? But then it is really heartfelt and profound? It is freaky and great.
  1. If It Be Your Will – One of the most Leonard Cohen of the Leonard Cohen songs. It is sparse and solemn and so full of love and yearning. The Melody of the guitar makes me feel so many things and I love it.
  1. Anthem – I love this song if only for the line, “There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” Leonard Cohen is a poet.

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That’s it for now. Listen to his music and enjoy his art and be happy. Thanks for reading.

Mr. Church Review

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Mr. Church is a heartwarming, family movie. It stars Eddie Murphy and Britt Robertson. It was written by Susan McMartin and directed by Bruce Beresford. And today it will be the subject of my review. Major spoilers. Continue reading “Mr. Church Review”

So Many Montages: A Review of Bad Moms

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For what it is, Bad Moms isn’t a bad movie. If you have had a long day and you just want to shut off your brain and have fun, Bad Moms is the perfect movie, but for the more discerning movie goer Bad Moms has some problems. Continue reading “So Many Montages: A Review of Bad Moms”

The Brutal Morality of The Magnificent Seven

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There is a brutal morality in the newest version of The Magnificent Seven. Continue reading “The Brutal Morality of The Magnificent Seven”

Pink Rose: A Review of Atlanta Episode Eight

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In the latest episode of Atlanta entitled The Club we see Earn, Alfred and Darius make an appearance at a local club. Sounds mundane right? Well it’s not! Continue reading “Pink Rose: A Review of Atlanta Episode Eight”

A Great Opportunity: A Review of Easy

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For those of you who don’t know, Joe Swanberg is a filmmaker with over thirty movies/television shows in his filmography. He is one of the main figures in the Mumblecore movement, which is a film movement characterized by low budget, grassroots filmmaking. Recently Swanberg released a new television series on Netflix called Easy and today I am going to review it. Continue reading “A Great Opportunity: A Review of Easy”