Column

Best I've Ever Seen

Talking with artists about concerts they'll never forget

Gary Stoller is an award-winning editor, author, and journalist. He's written for USA TODAY and loves Bob Dylan and Blue Rodeo.

Best I've Ever Seen

Talking with artists about concerts they'll never forget

Gary Stoller is an award-winning editor, author, and journalist. He's written for USA TODAY and loves Bob Dylan and Blue Rodeo.

Joan Osborne Takes a Ride Down Highway 61

"Before he came along, songs were usually written by professional Tin Pan Alley songwriters and performed by singers or groups who did not write for themselves".........what the what???

Ladies and gentleman.....Chuck Berry, Muddy Waters, Buddy Holly and a score of others that wrote their own songs (long before Dylan).

And Hank Williams and Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger........

And Donovan.

 

Interesting someone who makes a living at this would have drawn the conclusion that he was the origin of the singer songwriter but whatever, he gets credit for a lot that he himself would discourage.  She's a fine singer...as far as singers who didn't write for themselves, I am not sure what is wrong with that either...I am certain that Eric Bazilian wrote her biggest "hit"...I consider Bob to be a "professional songwriter" too...I'm not sure what his tax return says on the "occupation" line, but that's what he does...

It would be interesting to know what era or artists she's referring to in the quote you have selected Mr. Mutt, but I must say I was a bit surprised by that statement myself just taken at face value...Dylan is a great songwriter, maybe even the greatest...but he's not the only songwriter...it just seems that way, especially lately...

 

Point taken Mr Clown but I think she was talking about white pop/rock stars who did usually sing covers written by songwriters who didn't sing themselves. (Buddy Holly is obviously an exception and there are certainly others.)

It's often said that Dylan put the Brill Building out of business by insisting on writing his own songs after beginning as a cover artist himself. I've read that he started writing because he couldn't find anymore of the kinds of songs he wanted to sing. That's why I find it rather ironic that he is now doing covers of those traditional songwriters he helped put out of business.

I love her idea of doing more albums covering a great contemporary songwriter since I'm a rare soul who likes tribute albums. I figure if it's a good song it deserves multiple interpretations. I'd love to hear her do albums of songs by the likes of Leonard Cohen, Neil Young, Van Morrison, Chris Smithers, John Prine, Jules Shears, Chuck Prophet, Bruce Springsteen, Joni Mitchell and Tonio K. and many others. Jazz artists like Cassandra Wilson have been including covers of such artists for years instead of sticking to the same old tired American Songbook.

Same exact Dylan column feaured twice with two different photos.  Did Dylan buy No Depression?

Comments appear on both versions?! 

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