Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American singer, songwriter, musician, painter, and writer. He has been influential in popular music and culture for more than five decades. Much of his most celebrated work dates from the 1960s, when he became a reluctant “voice of a generation.
Artist: Bob Dylan
Title: Slow Train Coming
Label: CBS Records
Slow Train Coming is the nineteenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released on August 20, 1979 by Columbia Records. It was Dylan’s first effort since converting to Christianity, and all of the songs either express his strong personal faith, or stress the importance of Christian teachings and philosophy. The evangelical nature of the record alienated many of Dylan’s existing fans; at the same time, many Christians were drawn into his fan base. Slow Train Coming was listed at #16 in the 2001 book CCM Presents: The 100 Greatest Albums in Christian Music.
The album was generally well-reviewed in the secular press, and the single “Gotta Serve Somebody” became his first hit in three years, winning Dylan the Grammy for best rock vocal performance by a male in 1980.
Perhaps it was inevitable that Bob Dylan would change direction at the end of the ’70s, since he had dabbled in everything from full-on repudiation of his legacy to a quiet embrace of it, to dipping his toe into pure showmanship. Nobody really could have expected that he would turn to Christianity on Slow Train Coming, embracing a born-again philosophy with enthusiasm. He has no problem in believing in a vengeful god — you gotta serve somebody, after all — and this is pure brimstone and fire throughout the record, even on such lovely testimonials as “I Believe in You.” The unexpected side effect of his conversion is that it gave Dylan a focus he hadn’t had since Blood on the Tracks, and his concentration carries over to the music, which is lean and direct in a way that he hadn’t been since, well, Blood on the Tracks. Focus isn’t necessarily the same thing as consistency, and this does suffer from being a bit too dogmatic, not just in its religion, but in its musical approach. Still, it’s hard to deny Dylan‘s revitalized sound here, and the result is a modest success that at least works on its own terms.
1. Gotta Serve Somebody ( 5:22)
2. Precious Angel (6:27)
3. I Believe in You (5:02)
4. Slow Train (5:55)
1. Gonna Change My Way of Thinking (5:25)
2. Do Right to Me Baby (Do Unto Others) (3:50)
3. When You Gonna Wake Up (5:25)
4. Man Gave Names to All the Animals (4:23)
5. When He Returns (4:30)
Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American songwriter, singer, artist, and writer. He has been influential in popular music and culture for more than five decades. Much of his most celebrated work dates from the 1960s, when his songs chronicled social unrest.
Artist: Bob Dylan
Label: CBS Records
If Blood on the Tracks was an unapologetically intimate affair, Desire is unwieldy and messy, the deliberate work of a collective. And while Bob Dylan directly addresses his crumbling relationship with his wife, Sara, on the final track, Desire is hardly as personal as its predecessor, finding Dylan returning to topical songwriting and folk tales for the core of the record. It’s all over the map, as far as songwriting goes, and so is it musically, capturing Dylan at the beginning of the Rolling Thunder Revue era, which was more notable for its chaos than its music. And, so it’s only fitting that Desire fits that description as well, as it careens between surging folk-rock, Mideastern dirges, skipping pop, and epic narratives. It’s little surprise that Desire doesn’t quite gel, yet it retains its own character — really, there’s no other place where Dylan tried as many different styles, as many weird detours, as he does here. And, there’s something to be said for its rambling, sprawling character, which has a charm of its own. Even so, the record would have been assisted by a more consistent set of songs; there are some masterpieces here, though: “Hurricane” is the best-known, but the effervescent “Mozambique” is Dylan at his breeziest, “Sara” at his most nakedly emotional, and “Isis” is one of his very best songs of the ’70s, a hypnotic, contemporized spin on a classic fable. This may not add up to a masterpiece, but it does result in one of his most fascinating records of the ’70s and ’80s — more intriguing, lyrically and musically, than most of his latter-day affairs.
1. Hurricane (8:33)
2. Isis (6:58)
3. Mozambique (3:00)
4. One More Cup of Coffee (Valley Below) (3:43)
5. Oh, Sister (4:05)
1. Joey (11:05)
2. Romance in Durango (5:50)
3. Black Diamond Bay (7:30)
4. Sara (5:29)
Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter, artist and writer. He has been influential in popular music and culture for more than five decades. Much of his most celebrated work dates from the 1960s when his songs chronicled social unrest, although Dylan repudiated suggestions from journalists that he was a spokesman for his generation.
Artist: Bob Dylan
Title: Street Legal
Label: CBS Records
Street-Legal is the eighteenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released on June 15, 1978 by Columbia Records. The album was a serious musical departure for Dylan, who uses a large pop-rock band—complete with female backing vocalists—for the first time
Arriving after the twin peaks of Blood on the Tracks and Desire, Street Legal seemed like a disappointment upon its 1978 release, and it still seems a little subpar years after its release. Perhaps that’s because Bob Dylan was uncertain himself, not just writing a set of songs with no connecting themes, but replacing the sprawl of the Rolling Thunder Revue with a slick, professional big band, featuring a horn section and several backing vocalists. The interesting thing about this is that the music and slick production don’t jibe with the songs, which are as dense as anything Dylan had written since before his motorcycle accident. So, Street Legal becomes an interesting dichotomy, filled with songs that deserve close attention but recorded in arrangements that discourage such listening. As such, Street Legal is fascinating just for that reason — in another setting, these are songs that would have been hailed as near-masterpieces, but covered in gloss, they seem strange. Consequently, it’s not surprising that there are factions of Dylanphiles that find this worth the time, while just as many consider it a missed opportunity.
Themes of note are the subtly religious and somewhat apocalyptic overtones found throughout, especially in “Changing of the Guards“, “No Time to Think” and “Where Are You Tonight? (Journey Through Dark Heat)”. Although the Bible (both Old and New Testaments) had always influenced Dylan’s work, the proximity of this album to the beginning of his gospel tour (early 1979) raises the possibility that some songs may have been written with more Christian intent than previous ones.
1. Changing of the Guards (7:04)
2. New Pony (4:28)
3. No Time to Think (8:19)
4. Baby, Stop Crying (5:19)
1. Is Your Love in Vain? (4:30)
2. Señor (Tales of Yankee Power) (5:42)
3. True Love Tends to Forget (4:14)
4. We Better Talk This Over (4:04)
5. Where Are You Tonight? (Journey Through Dark Heat) (6:16)