Times have changed, but he remains a legend

Few artists alive today are as revered as Bob Dylan. Responsible for creating much of the scene that he became synonymous with, Dylan is both a musician and an icon, a man whose legend is much larger than himself. In a career that spans more than half a century, Dylan has been called everything from the voice of a generation to a reluctant hero: titles that mean little to the man himself. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about Dylan is his commitment to his music, and seeing him play live remains the holy grail for many serious music fans.

It’s no surprise that Dylan is best known for the folk songs he penned in the 1960s. Writing at a time of profound social unrest, Dylan’s lyrics seemed to sum up the anxiety of youth. Songs like ‘Blowing in the Wind’ and ‘The Times they are a – Changin’ became anthems for the growing counter-culture movement, lending a voice to those who were tired of the war-mongering and capitalist-driven culture of their forebears. With an acoustic guitar and a harmonica, Dylan quickly became a legend, inspiring everyone from Jimi Hendrix to the Beatles.

Dylan credits Woody Guthrie as one of his biggest influences, and the two became close before his death in 1967. Guthrie’s politically-driven songs and experiences of the Depression era would lead Dylan to write about issues he saw as important, and he soon became involved in the civil rights movement. He began writing songs about freedom and equality as well as chronicling the experiences of the downtrodden, and his gravelly voice, often out of tune, was the perfect vehicle to deliver his message.

By the time his second album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, was released in 1963, Dylan had established his reputation as a ‘protest’ songwriter- one of the singles, ‘Hard Rain’, was written in response to the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. His single ‘Blowin´in the wind’ was covered by Peter, Paul and Mary and became an international success, paving the way for countless other artists to cover his songs.

Dylan’s decision to play electric instruments created a storm of controversy that had fans cheering and booing in equal measure. The change coincided with Dylan’s transition from folk singer to pop/rock artist and was partly the result of his increasing disillusionment with how the public perceived him. He released a series of records in the late 1960s that were as varied as they were original, including the seminal ‘Blonde on Blonde’ in 1966 and the country-influenced ‘Nashville Skyline’ in 1969.

Dylan’s musical style continued to evolve through the 1970s, reflecting his changing views. Playing everything from blues to jazz, Dylan refused to be pigeonholed, releasing records that were often savaged by the critics. Many of his albums contained songs that were roughly recorded, with a noticeable lack of studio finishing. His career continued to flow through the 1980s and 90s with a mixture of successful releases and collaborations like the Travelling Willburys, which he formed with George Harrison, Tom Petty, Roy Orbison and Jeff Lyne.

The Bob Dylan of today bears little resemblance to the passionate protest writer of the 1960s, but this in itself is interesting. Just what he writes and thinks about today holds as much fascination as it always has, and fans hang off his every word between songs, if he decides to speak. Tickets to his show aren’t easy to come by, and at the time of writing there’s a waiting list that you need to sign up for if you want a chance of going. It’s worth it though, for there’s no telling when or if this musical legend will return.

 

Bob Dylan
Falconer Salen, Falkoner Alle 9, Frederiksberg;
Tuesday 20:00;
Tickets: 795-995kr,
www.billetnet.dk

 




  • Digitization is the secret ingredient in Chinese restaurateur’s growth adventure

    Digitization is the secret ingredient in Chinese restaurateur’s growth adventure

    Publisher Jesper Skeel and Korean BBQ restaurant chain owner Zen discuss the ups and downs of independent entrepreneurship and how to crack the Copenhagen market, from both an international and Danish perspective.

  • Pro-Palestinian demonstrations divide Copenhagen society

    Pro-Palestinian demonstrations divide Copenhagen society

    As popular protests of the Israeli offensive in Gaza erupt around the world and in the media, from university campuses to the streets of major cities, discord is escalating between demonstrators, the general public, authorities and politicians.

  • Denmark leads 15 member states in call to outsource EU migration policy

    Denmark leads 15 member states in call to outsource EU migration policy

    Just one day after the EU finally landed its New Pact on Migration and Asylum following four years of tough negotiations, a group of 15 member states, led by Denmark, issued a joint call for greater efforts to outsource migration policy and  prevent migrants from arriving at EU borders in the first place.

  • How to lead Danes IV – Cultural Bypassing

    How to lead Danes IV – Cultural Bypassing

    Many of us Danes, despite being well-educated and well-travelled, often lack experience in navigating cultural differences at work. This can lead to ‘cultural bypassing’, where we believe we are at a level of enlightenment where we no longer are burdened by the risk of making cross-cultural mistakes. As their manager, you can help your Danish colleagues by acknowledging cultural differences in the workplace.

  • Denmark’s Climate Minister wants to expand green agriculture bill

    Denmark’s Climate Minister wants to expand green agriculture bill

    Legislation to cut the sector’s emissions could “kill two birds with one stone” if it also combats fertiliser run-off in Denmark’s marine environment, says Climate Minister Lars Aagard, marking a potential shift in the green negotiations.

  • Dansk Folkeparti threatens to leave Climate Act over CO2 tax on agriculture

    Dansk Folkeparti threatens to leave Climate Act over CO2 tax on agriculture

    Several parties have criticised Dansk Folkeparti’s announcement that it may drop out of Denmark’s ambitious Climate Act agreement, calling the threat populist and cowardly.