Albums »Highway 61 Revisited

highway 61 bob dylan1965 was a turbulent year. As the first American soldiers were sent into Vietnam, civil rights demonstrators were violently clashing with troops and police in the south, Dylan shocked his fans by “going electric” and released Highway 61 Revisited, his first album with a full rock band backing him.

I love this one for its bluesy sound and the usual fascinating story telling; perhaps the most famous song , the acid-tongued “Like a Rolling Stone” (which is used to great effect in the brilliant Scorsese short, Life Lessons from New York Stories) was an inspiration to a young Bruce Springsteen, Frank Zappa and my then 16! year old dad.

I personally love “Ballad of a Thin Man” another acid tongued jab, this time at the reporters (specifically perhaps Jeffrey Jones from the Village Voice or Max Jones of Melody Maker magazine) whom Dylan felt nothing but disdain for.

I guess over all this is a contemptuous album, pretty much everybody's head is on the chopping block as Dylan wields literary references as his blade. It's also one of the best albums in rock and roll history.

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Posted on June 11, 2007

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