Strumming like the rhythm of the freight train, he brings the strings, E through E. All six. Like a freight train he may have come to NYC on. Let the myths take flight. Don’t harbor them, they are not yours, they are ours.
From the opening cords and vocals of ‘You’re no Good’ to moderate tempo and lament of a ‘Man of Constant Sorrow’, the needle is put down in the flame of a nineteen year old on fire. Yes, but the youngest of men; harmonica waling through.
‘Fixin’ to Die’, a blues spiritual stings with lyrics that cling to the gut. Like all tracks but two, standards from the past. ‘Talkin’ New York’ paints a city scape and the catacombs bellow the ground; from the perspective of a learned man naive to urban life.
‘Song to Woody’ draws tears like an arrow. An homage to his demi-God, mentor and the inspiration for his well-spring of youth. Last mentioned but an awe inspiring performance is ‘House of the Rising Sun’; a gritty song that paints the gouges of prostitution and the life of a rake (a gambling man). After all these decades, this track stands fathoms above any that have covered it. Where others suffocate at the height, Dylan still fills his lungs and lets you know.
What to say; how do you begin to describe prodigious? One may use verbiage but once a picture is sketched, they’ve inevitably moved on; double-time or more like a train pulling freight, lit and smoking through a Minnesota dark.
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