- She Belongs to Me
- Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat
- It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry
- Down in the Flood
- Meet Me in the Morning
- Gotta Serve Somebody
- The Groom's Still Waiting at the Altar
- Seeing the Real You at Last
- Everything Is Broken
- Dirt Road Blues
- High Water (For Charley Patton)
- Blind Willie McTell
The music of Bob Dylan has been profoundly touched by the blues -- from his first album to his latest, Modern Times. Either in song construction or in mood, Dylan’s songs continually call on the genre, drawing from the primal power of America’s most significant roots music. This Barnes & Noble exclusive collection centers on blues-tinged material drawn from Dylan albums beginning with 1965’s Bringing It All Back Home (“She Belongs to Me”) and ranging to 2003’s Love and Theft (“High Water”). If the rough-edged quality of Dylan’s voice in the later selections betrays the hand of time, his intensity and commitment on each of these classic tracks seems undiminished. From the laid-back groove of “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry” to the spiritual fervor of “Gotta Serve Somebody” to the lonesome wail of “Blind Willie McTell,” Dylan makes brilliant use of the striking musical, lyrical, and -- above all -- emotional resources of the blues to intensify his personal statements. This stirring collection makes us glad that Dylan has an unshakable case of the blues.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Blues [Barnes & Noble Exclusive] based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Skip this. You wanna hear Bob sing the blues, make your own compilation---it will be better than this one I'm sure. Nothing from his first, blues drenched album, no "Lonesome Day Blues" from his last album, and for cryin' out loud, what is "She Belongs To Me" doing on here? Makes no sense. As I said, skip this!
I disagree with the reviews that are dismissive of this collection, which I think works very, very well on its merits. The songs are all solid, vital, and often not well known at all. All the songs are good, but some are amazing. "Blind Willie McTell" is one of the most inspired, and possibly the most evocative and moving, things Dylan has recorded in his long and illustrious career as a songwriter. The tune is borrowed from "St. James Infirmary," but I hardly recognized it from having heard the version of that song by Bobby "Blue" Bland on his album "Two Steps from the Blues." The lyric is certainly completely new, and the combined effect of the words and musical soundscape Dylan creates is enough to take your breath away when you hear it, and haunt you afterwards. Don't worry, though. You will play the track again immediately after hearing it once. If you have not heard this track, you are in for a major discovery, not to say revelation. In any case, I like Dylan when he is down to earth and in a blues mode, as he is here. He is not an aping the blues tradition, but an original extension of it. This collection reminds us how central an inspiration and mode of expression the Blues has always been for Dylan. One can complain that there are not more songs, or that some favorite song is missing (How about "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue," which is a blues in spirit if not form?), but this collection is satisfying the way few CD's are. It manages to hang together, despite the span of time it represents, due to the unifying style. The first track does stand out as less obviously a blues choice, but I like it a lot anyway, so it matters not. Anyone who has enjoyed the album "Highway 61 Revisited" (which has a lot of blues style to it), or "Blood On the Tracks" is likely to like this, which, while less explosive than the former, is more consistent than the latter. In short, an engaging collection I am very glad to have it and listen to it often. It is among the top 6 or 7 CD's I have of Dylan (along w/ Hwy 61, Blond On Blond, Greatest Hits II, The Best of, and maybe Bringing It All Back Home). There is always room on my shelf for an intelligent, emotionally satisfying collection. This is not the commercial version of Dylan (well-known songs),but rather a good place to gather ones that in some ways are more satisfying for their relative simplicity (and simplicity is always relative in Dylan, of course). I recommend "Blues" highly, and am perplexed by the icy reception it has received in some other reviews above. Get it--you won't regret it.
How can Bob allow Columbia to put out this compilation?
This is a fantastic album. I have already played it numerous times.
I agree with the previous reviewer, I could make a better Dylan blues compilation in my sleep. However, She Belongs to Me, while not really blues sounding it is in the typical blues progession and phrasing, so it fits awkwardly. Still, I would have like to seen Black Crow Blues, or some of the more obscure songs.
I realize Dylan's PR team has his implicit consent to do what they think best for their artist. Dylan's recent appearance in a Victoria's Secret ad should tell us that he is not too concerned with what anyone thinks of his recent money oriented behavior. I hope for his sake that his past concern for the causes of justice, self awareness etc. impel him to give generously to those in need in the world. If not his age has not granted him more wisdom.