Happy Birthday, Bob Dylan

June 3, 2011 at 10:02 pm 1 comment

OK, so I’m a few days late. Sure his Bobness will forgive me. I’m not about to claim him, with his carbon-heavy lifestyle, as One of Us (though rumour has it he is a veggie: if anyone is in the know, do share) He may not have stayed long on the Civil rights barricade, but he left some classic songs there. And shared the platform with Martin Luther King that one time …something about a dream, was it?

 On the occasion of his 70th birthday, here’s my pick of Dylan songs for Greens:

  • A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall. An eerily contemporary eco-anthem, somehow.
  • I Shall Be Released; a very handy little anthem for Amnesty International.
  • The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll. Forget the voice – it’s not about the voice – and listen to the words. Poor Hattie, but what a fantastic elegy!
  • Only A Pawn In Their Game; history showed his facts to be awry on this version of the murder of Medgar Evers, but I love that he avoids the usual fallen hero riff to focus on the nasty workings of the Klan.
  • Blowin’ In The Wind: not my personal favourite, but it did pretty much invent a new genre of songwriting.
  • Who Killed Davey Moore? Bet you don’t know this one! As with Hattie, the deceptively simple format is used for complex arguments – in this case a surprising anti-boxing rant. From the early 60s too.
  •  Señor (Tales of Yankee Power): a critique of US policy inCentral America.
  • The Times They Are A-Changin’. He sang this in the White House for the Obamas. If you want to annoy a Tory, quote this lyric!
  • With God On Our Side: reasonably accurate history this time. And scarily more topical than when it was written.
  • Masters of War: An actual hate song – not normally my thing, but I can always make an exception. Lately I think of Dick Cheney when I hear this.
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Veggie quote of the week IMF Quote of the Week

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. James Murphy  |  June 13, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    Where’s that other elderly Hebden Bridge green party candidate Alan McDonald these days?

    And why does that make me think of Gil Scott-Heron?

    Reply

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How cold is my valley?

Who I am

This blog started during the months before the 2010 General Election, in which I was the Green candidate for Calder Valley. It's morphed into an account of green activism...and other meanderings.

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