Bob Dylan: The Bootleg Series

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A search reveals that these volumes have been mentioned all over the place, but have never had a comprehensive thread.

Since last week's compelling Dylanival and the long ILM thread about it, I have been driven back to the Bootlegs 1-3. Slowly working my way through: still only up to 'She's Your Lover Now'. But crikey, that track almost deserves a thread of its own! So thrilling to hear things come together and fall apart, piano hold steady while guitarist stops and starts again; like the 'Keep It With Mine' where the producer tells Bob to keep going.

Other big theme I wanted to raise: Great Unreleased Songs. 'Mama, You Been On My Mind' and 'Farewell Angelina', never on an LP - yet standards for years, and finally available here! What about those? How did they become standards anyway: through actual bootleg-bootlegs? Why did he leave them off LPs in the first place?

So much to say. And I have not heard Vol 7 yet.

the bobfox, Thursday, 6 October 2005 14:45 (twelve years ago) Permalink

search: blind willie mctell from volume 3.

kyle (akmonday), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I like the 'Albert Hall' one very much. I think the tuning up is btter than most albums. I do a 'human beatbox' version of it. I do not like the 1975 one very much, apart from the solo performances. I have hardly listened to 1964 (but it is in my bag). I haven't heard or seen the latest one (but it is in the work DVD box in non-packaged format - maybe I will borrow it to make up for my disappointment at having taken home Rocky II and Car Wash only to find they were region one). I like 1-3, but I do not have it at home at present. I like Every Grain Of Sand better than the 'proper' version, and I like the Blood On The Tracks, erm, tracks.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller 68), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:17 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I think "She's Your Lover Now" would have been the best song on Blonde on Blonde.

Mark (MarkR), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:20 (twelve years ago) Permalink

* We need: more outtakes from the Basement Tapes.

* 1st song on Vol 5/1975 should shut up forever anyone who still thinks "Dylan can't sing"

* "Wallflower" - one of his most underrated songs, David Bromberg's version is great

Keith C (lync0), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:21 (twelve years ago) Permalink

bootleg 1-3 was actually my first exposure to dylan, since i was staying with a dylan fanatic who had just bought it, and i really flipped for it. "she's your lover now" is really fantastic... i also very much liked the really fast version of "it takes a train to laugh..."... the concert bootlegs of "mama you've been on my mind" that i've heard have always been very jaunty; did he ever play it as delicately as he did on that set? lastly, the basement outtake "santa fe" is the one i sing the most, since it's got a great melody and incoherent lyrics

dave k, Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:41 (twelve years ago) Permalink

She's Your Lover Now and Blind Willie McTell are the stars of the Bootleg Series 1-3 box set. I'm also really partial to Nobody 'Cept You, an outtake from Planet Waves which would have been the best song on it.

kornrulez6969 (TCBeing), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:44 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I didn't know people loved 'She's Your Lover Now' so much! I am excited.

I adore that vol 5 version of 'Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You' - track one, even using the phrase 'Rolling Thunder'. Thrills!

the bobfox, Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:53 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I will isten to it again. I think there might be too many musicians, a la Concert For Bangladesh.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller 68), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:55 (twelve years ago) Permalink

On the Royal Albert Hall bootleg series, I am NOT a fan of the acoustic disc. I find it slow and just kinda overly mannered. The electric disc, however, is some of the best rock and roll ever played.

If you want to hear great acoustic Bob, you can't beat the three songs on Before the Flood: Don't Think Twice, It's Alright Ma and Just Like A Woman. All three are the best versions of those songs, and beat the piss out of the Royal Albert Hall acoustic stuff.

kornrulez6969 (TCBeing), Thursday, 6 October 2005 15:57 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Haha yes! Before the Flood is occasionally great

Baaderonixx and the hedonistic gluttons (baaderonixx), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:03 (twelve years ago) Permalink

the bear mountain picnic song gets me everydamntime...

i'm also happy for the recently uprooted love of "shes your lover now". i about break everytime it just quits like that. Vol. 7 proves that the blonde on blonde sessions, though interesting, don't quite pack the punch of the final versions. i can't imagine what would have become of syln. the vol. 2 version is rough, but warm. b o b has a late night frosty glow. it coulda been better or worse.

the vol. 2 version of santa fe is great, better than the genuine basement tape's makes you need to belt along with it.

i've gone on week long binges with each of the live records. Rolling Thunder got me to like "The Hurricane". The "It's Alright Ma" from 1964 brought back the almost crushing power of that song for me. And I still get chills with the 66 version of "Like A Rolling Stone".

all said, i love this series. i think it provides a brilliant look into how grand the dylan universe is.

bb (bbrz), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:04 (twelve years ago) Permalink

The '80s stuff on the first Bootleg comp is first-rate. "Blind Willie McTell," "Caribbean Wind," the E Street Band-performed version of "When The Night Comes Falling From The Sky" are some of his greatest songs.

Alfred Soto (Alfred Soto), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:09 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Don't forget about Biograph:
"And I went back to find Isis just to tell 'er I love ARRRRRRRRRRRRRR!"

Old School (sexyDancer), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:12 (twelve years ago) Permalink

re: the 1966 acoustic sets--I beg to differ. Those are among my favorite Dylan recordings of all time. So slow, sad and beautiful. I think Dylan's really digging deep--losing himself completely in the songs. He often sounds so otherworldy and lonely that it's a shock when the applause comes after the songs end. In its own way, I think those sets are just as radical as the electric set (which I also loooooove). And there's some of the wildest harmonica work of the man's career--check out the long excursion he takes at the end of Tambourine Man. I can dig the Before the Flood stuff, but it's a little bit too amped up for my tastes.

tylerw, Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:19 (twelve years ago) Permalink

As far as acoustic live Dylan goes, I've always loved his vocal on "Just Like a Woman" from Bangladesh. He sings his guts out.

Jazzbo (jmcgaw), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:30 (twelve years ago) Permalink

how is that Gaslight performance that was just released?

kyle (akmonday), Thursday, 6 October 2005 17:43 (twelve years ago) Permalink

what i want to know is why "can you please crawl out your window", the glockenspiel version, was never released or used in the doc. it's easily in my top 5 dylan songs--as exuberant as live 65.

naturemorte, Thursday, 6 October 2005 19:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Crikey, yes, Urgent & Key: that was a 45 - but I'm afraid I have never heard it in my life, not that I can remember. What does it sound like?

the bellefox, Thursday, 6 October 2005 19:07 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I love the 1964 disc (vol 6). Dylan sounds so eager to entertain his audience, as opposed to the bitter stance he took during the next two years (both sides of him were captured so well in the Scorcese doc). He sings his guts out on songs like "Who Killed Davey Moore" and "If You Gotta Go, Go Now" with power that I didn't know he had in him before I heard this record.

MindInRewind (Barry Bruner), Thursday, 6 October 2005 19:26 (twelve years ago) Permalink

'Mama, You Been On My Mind' and 'Farewell Angelina', never on an LP - yet standards for years, and finally available here! What about those? How did they become standards anyway: through actual bootleg-bootlegs?

dunno about "FA" but "MYBOMM" was covered by a few people--as the Scorsese doc makes clear, his publisher made sure his songs got covered.

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Thursday, 6 October 2005 19:33 (twelve years ago) Permalink

One night I discovered something totally insane. If you have the DVD disc that came with the Rolling Thunder volume then play Isis. When you see the part when the sweaty guitarist's eyes are all bulging from cocaine and he tries to bite Dylan's left-hand fingers, back it up a bit and play it in slow motion. That whole fucking weird scene played in slo-mo is truly mesmerizing and a bit disturbing.

Justin Farrar (Justin Farrar), Thursday, 6 October 2005 20:11 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Joan Baez put out "FA" first I think, and she made it famous.

I've had the the first box for a few years and been meaning to pick up vols. 4-7. Some faves from it that haven't been mentioned much:

Seven Curses (I'm sucker for mystical revenge/stolen virginity/evil lawmen/wronged man folklore stuff)
Sitting On A Barbed Wire Fence ("She's turnin' me into an old man/and man, I ain't even 25!")
If Not For You (It's prettier than the official version)
Nobody 'Cept You (Good call kornrulez)
Seven Days (Since i dig this and the rolling thunder biograph tracks, how urgent is it for me to pick up Vol.5? And also is the 1st version w/the dvd worth tracking down?)
Foot of Pride (The homesick blues, nearly 20 years of schoolin' later, and still on the day shift)
Tell Me (Bob can do Pop)

thanks for answering my question before I posted it. that sounds cool.

Marxism Goes Better With Coke (Charles McCain), Thursday, 6 October 2005 20:13 (twelve years ago) Permalink

'Mama, You Been On My Mind' and 'Farewell Angelina', never on an LP - yet standards for years, and finally available here! What about those? How did they become standards anyway: through actual bootleg-bootlegs?
dunno about "FA" but "MYBOMM" was covered by a few people--as the Scorsese doc makes clear, his publisher made sure his songs got covered.

-- Matos-Webster Dictionary (michaelangelomato...), October 6th, 2005.

Most notably and beautifully by Rod Stewart.

Alfred Soto (Alfred Soto), Thursday, 6 October 2005 20:18 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Another good one from The Bootleg Series box is the demo of Every Grain of Sand, which I prefer to the Shot of Love version...much more intimate without the Bobettes.

kornrulez6969 (TCBeing), Thursday, 6 October 2005 20:23 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Barking dog!

Marxism Goes Better With Coke (Charles McCain), Thursday, 6 October 2005 20:24 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Although the 3rd disc of Bootleg Series 1-3 is kind of throwaway, and the 2nd disc has a lot of great alternate versions of album tracks, that first disc is very worthwhile; in fact, over the last 5 years, I've probably listened to that first disc more than anything else Dylan-related.

1st Disc Standouts:
"Hard Times in New York Town"
"House Carpenter" (Is this a cover or an original? It's become one of my Dylan favorites)
"Talkin' Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues"
"Rambling, Gambling Willie"
"Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues"
"Who Killed Davey Moore?"
"Last Thoughts On Woody Guthrie" (if for nothing else, those ending lines:

"You'll find God in the church of your choice
You'll find Woody Guthrie in Brooklyn State Hospital

And though it's only my opinion
I may be right or wrong
You'll find them both
In the Grand Canyon
At sundown"

Suzy Creemcheese (SuzyCreemcheese), Thursday, 6 October 2005 21:03 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Am I alone in my complete awe of "Moonshiner"?

Sung with such beauty, control, and weight, I can't get over it. Devastates me every time.

Taylor, Friday, 7 October 2005 01:51 (twelve years ago) Permalink

xpost "his publisher made sure": yes, pinefox, his "Mama You Been On My Mind" and a bunch of other demos were sent around by the publisher, so Fairport took "Percy's Song" and others, and the whole Lo & Behold album, by Dean Coulson, McGuiness, Flint, and others, was from publisher's demos, I think, or most of it, anyway. Seems like the Brits jumped on more of the prime goodies than Americans did,initially, although of course Baez did a double-LP of his stuff soon enough (Any Day Now, right?)There were a couple of LPs of demos issued by the old TMQ (Trademark of Quality, with a pig-rubber-stamp as trademark) booters, although mostly they did comps from various sources too (So "Mama" and other demos are with Minnesota apartment tapes, Basement Tapes, Isle of Wight, etc. on the VD Waltz comp; I've never heard a whole album of demos, alas.)In some cases, it was a matter of just having too much stuff, not wanting to flood the market, and/or what he did last month too different from this month's, and this month, it's time for an album! Then in 70s, not wanting the 60s overflow to wash away the later stuff; plus, when he finally did a legit version of Basement Tapes, and it did well, he was surprised:"I thought everybody already had that!" The boots were popular and well-enough known, he prb thought legit issues would increase pressure by being seen as potboilers, at that point, even f they didn't upstage, so either way, they were a problem, until he needed the money and the cred bad enough, and had by that time become enough of a Historical Landmark that the Bootleg Series seemed only right and proper. Thing is, though, hearing the tracks left off the 70s-80s stuff, in favor of some of the crappier items that did make the cut, really show how unsure of himself he can be, for all the Bardic charisma, etc. So, in that respect, the songs of his fabled past are *still* a problem for his sense of credibility, which is why they've been so carefully rationed (still tons of things; it'll be like Hendrix and Trane and Miles issues, only moreso, cause more songs, not just 9000 versions of 900 songs)But basically, questions of judgement/crediblity are part of his history too, not so much of an issue (if he makes another bad album, and he will, big deal, cos the song-suply'll never end, til the world does, and when it does, his stuff will spill over to somewhere:the good, bad, great, and meh;I can see it, the probability of that now, even while this thought ends.)

don, Friday, 7 October 2005 02:57 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Regarding "She's Your Lover Now," the Dylan Scrapbook released in conjuction with No Direction Home has a lyric sheet for that tune. I'm not sure if the sheet is made to look authentic, or if it's a replica of the original, but the lyrics end where the song on the second Bootleg disc ends.
I always had the impression that the wheels just fell off, and that the song was meant to be longer.

Jason Dent (jason dont), Friday, 7 October 2005 03:31 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"you, you just sit around and ask for ashtrays... can't you REACH?"

100% WJE (Jody Beth Rosen), Friday, 7 October 2005 05:41 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"blind willie mctell" is very close to being his best performance, if not his best song, ever.

J.D. (Justyn Dillingham), Friday, 7 October 2005 05:56 (twelve years ago) Permalink

It is Don't Look Back that is in the box at the work where we work, not No Direction Home. I watched a couple of minutes last night before deciding that it was best to wait till my karma had reached its optimum level and then watch it.

Listened to some Live 64, did not think much of it really. But I shall persevere.

Crawl Out Your Window is on Biograph, I think, Pinefox. Should you wish, I could copy it for you when I rescue it from "storage". I also have a J. Hendrix version recorded for the BBC Light Programme.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller 68), Friday, 7 October 2005 07:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

yeah crawl out your window is on biograph but it's a a sub-par version--i'm talking specifically about the glockenspiel version. the one on biograph is a little laid-back, but the glockenspiel version is really energetic and crazy. when he launches into the third chorus he does one of those soulful nasal whines that only dylan can do.


naturemorte, Friday, 7 October 2005 07:37 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"House Carpenter" (Is this a cover or an original? It's become one of my Dylan favorites)

It's a cover - it's a ridiculously old trad song. A great version is on Harry Smiths' Anthology of American Folk Music.

Come Back Johnny B (Johnney B), Friday, 7 October 2005 07:38 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I don't know the glockenspiel version.

PJ Miller (PJ Miller 68), Friday, 7 October 2005 07:45 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"blind willie mctell" is very close to being his best performance, if not his best song, ever.

seconded; amazing song/performance, totally spellbinding

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Friday, 7 October 2005 08:03 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Although the 3rd disc of Bootleg Series 1-3 is kind of throwaway

Madness. I can't really say if it's the best disc but it's definitely the one I've listened to most. 'Foot of Pride','Every Grain', 'Blind Willie McT', 'Angelina', 'Seven Days' = throwaway??

Baaderonixx and the hedonistic gluttons (baaderonixx), Friday, 7 October 2005 08:04 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"Well, God is in heaven
And we all want what's his
But power and greed and corruptible seed
Seem to be all that there is"

So classsssssic.
Also turned me on to "St James Infirmary", from which the melody is lifted. Checl out Bobby Blue Bland's version if you have the chance.

Baaderonixx and the hedonistic gluttons (baaderonixx), Friday, 7 October 2005 08:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

crawl out your window is great, indeed ! (and yeah, the glockenspiel version is best).
it's easily amongst my favorite bob's trax.
guess i'm ready to grab the latest bootleg series now !

AleXTC (AleXTC), Friday, 7 October 2005 08:19 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I almost started this thread myself after doing a search for it last week! Surprised one did not exist til now, thx for starting.

Vol. 1-3 I heard before a lot of the albums, and it's the thing that made me obsessive about Dylan. Had a 90 cassette of tracks, mostly discs 1 & 2, that I completely wore out that summer and beyond. It started with "Last Thoughts on Woody Guthrie". Upon hearing the original version of say "If Not For You" without the "Ready George?" and a certain wobbly reckless energy of a lot of the tracks on 1-3, the originals sounded rather polished or staid. "Santa Fe" is another good example. Even "Idiot Wind" at the end of Vol. 2 is more biting and mean than the album vers.

Vol. 4 opened my eyes in a big way to the pre-'66 material, as I'm sure it did for a lot of people. I actually prefer disc 1, particularly the devestatingly sad "Desolation Row" and Dylan's expressive harp playing thoughout. Almost like he's testing the audience with his harp playing, similar in aggression to part 2 "Play it fucking loud". I find the guitar playing on disc 1 tattered, like he means it, it all fits the mood nicely.

Vol. 5 I bought when it came out and only listened a handful of times. Need to return to it. I remember it sounding very punk rock, though.

Vol. 6 is the 1964 disc, right? Never bought that.

Vol. 7 don't have yet.

mcd (mcd), Friday, 7 October 2005 12:54 (twelve years ago) Permalink

about she's your lover now--i thought the scrapbook lyrics sheet was weird too--because there IS a last verse. He sings it on the solo piano outtake of the song--which has yet to see official release. anyone who loves that song oughtta seek it out, though. it's incredible--extremely slow and wasted-sounding. with the release of the latest bootleg series, this is probably the major remaining outtake to remain officially unreleased.

but anyway, i love the bootleg series' one and all, but part of me wishes that Dylan (or Columbia) would do like Elvis Costello and just reissue the albums each with a bonus disc of outtakes/live stuff/etc. Of course they just did that big SACD reissue series a few years ago, so that's unlikely to happen any time soon.

tylerw, Friday, 7 October 2005 13:10 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Seek out: Lou Reed's cover of "Foot of Pride."

Alfred Soto (Alfred Soto), Friday, 7 October 2005 13:15 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Ah, there are two ways of doing this: a "Bootleg" series, and 'extra disc'..

The fall reissues have an extra disc, but as they mostly have Peel sessions, they are pointless if you have that "Ah, the Fall Peel Sessions box set, you guys" set.

mark grout (mark grout), Friday, 7 October 2005 13:16 (twelve years ago) Permalink

curious about that she's your lover now piano outtake...
there's another "song" i've been wondering about : it's a tune he plays on accoustic guitar at the end of "eat the document".
is this a proper song ? a demo ? a cover ?

AleXTC (AleXTC), Friday, 7 October 2005 13:22 (twelve years ago) Permalink

that's "i can't leave her behind". as far as i know, that's the only recording of the song. but it's amazing--vocally one of Dylan's most tender moments. You can get an mp3 of that (and the she's your lover now outtake and a whole bunch more) at

tylerw, Friday, 7 October 2005 13:38 (twelve years ago) Permalink

yeah, his singing, the melody, the guitar playing... beautiful indeed. so it's a song of his, then ? incredible that didn't get released !?
anyway, thanks !

AleXTC (AleXTC), Friday, 7 October 2005 14:08 (twelve years ago) Permalink

yeah it's one of his. the story goes that him and Robbie Robertson would stay up all night on the 1966 UK tour writing dozens of new songs--and then the next day neither one could remember them.

tylerw, Friday, 7 October 2005 14:14 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I am still working my way through 1-3 in order. Slowly. I am now halfway through 'You Changed My Life'.

Latest discoveries:

'Tangled Up In Blue' - a centrepiece of the set to me when I first heard it - is it in E, and the LP version in G?

'Call Letter Blues' is doing more for me than before: some poignancy in the words.

I have never loved 'Idiot Wind' but am now impressed by the relative tenderness of this (NYC?) version as vs the LP.

The bootleg 'If You See Her' is a lot better than the LP's, surely.

Is 'Golden Loom' the first time Bob and Emmylou H sang together? Assuming it's her.

It's funny how that is country, then 'Catfish' is blues. I have always thought 'Catfish' kind of unimportant, but actually I like the depth of its sound, the reverb around those slides and harmonicas.

Is the barking dog the reason that this 'Every Grain of Sand' was not used? I like this song a lot considering that it's religious.

The whole set is an amazing way to take a rapid-fire time-tour through Dylan's career, hearing the flavour of one year (those Desirous violins) for a track or two before the next sound comes along.

the bobfox, Friday, 7 October 2005 14:34 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Oh, yes - 'Nobody 'Cept You' IS good, isn't it: oddly it sounds to me like the Rolling Thunder sound, though it predates it.

Unlike PJM, I like Live 1964 a lot.

This glockenspiel rumour remains mysterious to me.

But christ, so many great things: 'Barbed Wire Fence', 'Train To Cry', '... Go Now' on bootleg 2. Peerless!

the bobfox, Friday, 7 October 2005 14:37 (twelve years ago) Permalink

haha that guy at 4:23 is having such a good time

niels, Monday, 6 November 2017 18:25 (two months ago) Permalink

who's with dylan in those photos?

niels, Monday, 6 November 2017 18:25 (two months ago) Permalink

Keltner and Drummond (drummer and bass player, respectively)

Οὖτις, Monday, 6 November 2017 18:32 (two months ago) Permalink

Just got the 2-disc version. I've never really got into this stuff on the studio albums. Curious

Duke, Monday, 6 November 2017 19:43 (two months ago) Permalink

here, take a brochure, it has the words to today's hymns in it

j., Monday, 6 November 2017 19:58 (two months ago) Permalink

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 November 2017 20:51 (two months ago) Permalink

have you heard the good news?

santana's solo on "the groom's still waiting at the altar" really goes in

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 November 2017 20:53 (two months ago) Permalink

the "Blessed by the Name" on disc 2 of the 2CD set is so nuts, just a freight (not slow) train of a groove

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 November 2017 21:59 (two months ago) Permalink

sometimes it's so over the top with the fervor and the backup singers i wonder if nick cave had heard some of these boots when he was making lyre of orpheus/abbatoir blues

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 November 2017 21:59 (two months ago) Permalink

(or henry's dream)

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 November 2017 22:00 (two months ago) Permalink

Consideringg what a "Street-Legal" fan Cave is I am guessing he most have, I was thinking the same thing over the wknd but yeah this live band is totally a Lyre of Oh/Abby Blues template

chr1sb3singer, Monday, 6 November 2017 22:06 (two months ago) Permalink

From Mojo magazine, January 1997:
MOJO: What, if push comes to shove, is your all-time favourite album?
CAVE: I guess it's Slow Train Coming by Bob Dylan. That's a great record, full of mean-spirited spirituality. It's a genuinely nasty record, certainly the nastiest 'Christian' album I've ever come across.

chr1sb3singer, Monday, 6 November 2017 22:09 (two months ago) Permalink

esp. the more gospelly they get (away from the apex of 'slow train' sleaze), i think the band often sounds not far from what you can often hear on like those 'fire in my bones' comps, church bands playing, don't see why cave couldn't have heard some of that sort of stuff the normal ways back in the day (or since)

j., Tuesday, 7 November 2017 00:09 (two months ago) Permalink

Reminds me: wonder if he ever heard this, before doing all that? Originally released in 1969, so maybe---see for yourself which songs, several I wouldn't have thought of for this, but I like it (also might have been an influence on New Morning, a little bit*, though not sure when that was recorded):

*Also maybe the black gospel-associated harmonists x white country-associated steel guitar [before most of us listeners knew about the black church communities documented much later in Sacred Steel) on the chorus of "George Jackson" ( a rare if not unprecented musical move at the time, and taken as standing for solidarity): Not great, but very much to the point, and unabashedly related then to some events still controversial in some respects (incl. Jackson's whole life, as well as death, and the Marin County Courthouse shoot-out afterwards)
(Also "Property of Jesus" etc. got covered later.)

dow, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 00:39 (two months ago) Permalink

In case that won't play, here's a key line: "Sometimes I think this whole world/Is one big prison yard/Some of us are prisoners/The rest of us are guards."

dow, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 00:42 (two months ago) Permalink

^^ has "George Jackson" ever been reissued? great tune.

sleeve, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 02:17 (two months ago) Permalink

think it was only included the mid-1970s Masterpieces comp (I might be wrong though ...)

tylerw, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 17:28 (two months ago) Permalink

the acoustic version is on this

Number None, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 17:34 (two months ago) Permalink

xp that's the (edited) "big band" version from the A-side, Number None's link is the acoustic B-side

so I guess it has been reissued, buried in two separate 3LP/2CD comp sets

sleeve, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 17:37 (two months ago) Permalink

on the plus side the starting Discogs price is $3

sleeve, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 17:37 (two months ago) Permalink

BS13 is mighty good

Hadrian VIII, Tuesday, 21 November 2017 13:51 (one month ago) Permalink

Finally listened to the sampler on Spotify last night---17 tracks, 76 minutes---and maybe it's an unfortunate choice of tracks, compared to the actual (2-disc standard, 8-disc/1 DVD etc. box) releases)--but, despite a few engaging cuts ("I can manipulate people as well as anybody!" Sounds even happier when he combines this with "I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody!" Not even victory over family is worth that!), I found much of this increasingly oppressive, especially on headphones. Like locking myself in the basement with something dead and rotting, someone else's reeking, blood-soaked dreams of vengence on shadows of will, bulletproof suits with flys open, tantalizing, do-wrong women---many of whom seem like shadows, projections of his own insatiable, paranoid drive, maybe xpost cocaine dreams and then some.
Yes, the performers, including him, are putting out, but so far, most of the time, just doesn't seem worth it. What I get for going once more into the charms of Spotify (b-but it's never been like this---at least the commercials brought fleeting relief)

dow, Tuesday, 21 November 2017 15:38 (one month ago) Permalink

"Everytime I say 'You' I mean 'I'," he once said in an interview, and he seemed to live that self-awareness in some writing, some performances, as I mentioned above--but he seems to have forgotten it here, and this phase went on for years---wonder how he came out of it, as the songs gradually got better (maybe he just decided to keep some shit to himself, but that seems like a major achievement, after hearing this).

dow, Tuesday, 21 November 2017 15:47 (one month ago) Permalink

I don't find this stuff to be less hectoring or joyless or whatever than most of his best stuff. I guess I can see for listeners sensitive enough abt being proselytized to that the condemned "you" scans as you the listener, it could make you feel like Sara Dylan w/ front row seats for Idiot Wind

Personally I could give a shit. This is hands down his best band. He's in peak voice, the energy is often up there w/ the best Rolling Thunder nights. The songs are by and large really good.

The Toronto discs 5-6 are just amazing

Hadrian VIII, Wednesday, 22 November 2017 19:44 (one month ago) Permalink

less more

Hadrian VIII, Wednesday, 22 November 2017 19:49 (one month ago) Permalink

This is hands down his best band. He's in peak voice, the energy is often up there w/ the best Rolling Thunder nights

Clearly this is a matter of taste, I don't rate his 70s live voice very highly, find it too shouty on both Before the Flood, Rolling Thunder and Hard Rain.

What's the best Dylan band? We might poll this one, if we're able to find an overview of all the constellations. John Wesley Harding trio is a personal favorite with Kenny Buttrey on drums and Charlie McCoy on bass.

niels, Thursday, 23 November 2017 07:12 (one month ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

picked up the 6-disc Basement Tapes for 50 bucks and have been wallowing in it all day, damn this stuff is great. I haven't gotten to disc 6 yet but I'll be the judge of "very poor sonic quality" thank you very much

love dow's posts about this upthread, all this stuff works as a whole with the throwaways, the fragments, the covers, and the staggering originals all mixed up in a stoned loose flow. I never went much further than the 1-disc Safety Tape, still am not very familiar with the rejigged '75 2LP, so most of this stuff is a revelation

sleeve, Sunday, 10 December 2017 04:22 (one month ago) Permalink

The first few tracks with Joan Baez are fine.

The rest are dull, and if the sound quality had been great, they'd still be dull.

Mark G, Sunday, 10 December 2017 14:46 (one month ago) Permalink

Joan Baez? She is not on the basement tapes. Dull? No!

tylerw, Sunday, 10 December 2017 15:35 (one month ago) Permalink

as usual Mark G has absolutely no idea what he's talking about

sleeve, Sunday, 10 December 2017 15:44 (one month ago) Permalink

get out of this thread, you're fired

sleeve, Sunday, 10 December 2017 15:44 (one month ago) Permalink

also, FP

sleeve, Sunday, 10 December 2017 15:45 (one month ago) Permalink

what is going on here?

still bumping Trouble No More a lot, Fred Hackett is my hero

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Sunday, 10 December 2017 16:48 (one month ago) Permalink

what's going on here is that The Complete Basement Tapes are awesome, I know I'm late to that party and we're all talking about the new set but hey this is the Bootleg Series thread.

disc 6 sounds fine to me!

sleeve, Sunday, 10 December 2017 16:51 (one month ago) Permalink

the version of "the auld triangle" on the basement tapes box is one of the best things

J. Sam, Sunday, 10 December 2017 16:53 (one month ago) Permalink

Oh, that was the other set, nm.

Mark G, Sunday, 10 December 2017 17:01 (one month ago) Permalink

i know greil marcus builds up sign on the cross as the earthquake omitted from the 2LP but my favorite of the left-outs is definitely All I Have to Do is Dream

harbinger of failure (Jon not Jon), Monday, 11 December 2017 16:55 (one month ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Trouble No More is so good.

kornrulez6969, Friday, 29 December 2017 02:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I got the 2-disc set for Christmas. So far I've listened to the 1st disc. I already knew and loved most of the songs from the original studio albums, and in a few cases at least I think I still prefer the studio versions (especially the ones on Saved vs some of the early live performances where it seems like the road-testing of the songs improved them), but some of the performances reveal whole new sides of the songs or feature a particularly great vocal, so this for me is well worth having.

o. nate, Friday, 29 December 2017 03:23 (two weeks ago) Permalink

To me it's worth it just for the super cool intro he does for Solid Rock...

"Gonna do a request tonight. Somebody shouted out a song called Solid Rock. Hanging onto a solid rock made before the foundation of the world, is that the one you mean?"

kornrulez6969, Friday, 29 December 2017 16:25 (two weeks ago) Permalink

haha yeah that's great

niels, Friday, 29 December 2017 17:39 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Just finished the new Clinton Heylin book accompanying the set.... Some of it familiar from Behind The Shades but a good deep read on the period nonetheless

Hadrian VIII, Friday, 29 December 2017 17:48 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I just wish Property Of Jesus was on the 2 cd live set, that's always been my favorite fire and brimstone Bob song.

kornrulez6969, Sunday, 31 December 2017 17:21 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I dug out "Slow Train Coming" recently because of this set, and liked it more than I thought I was going to.

So, may be back 'on the bus' regarding this set,

Mark G, Sunday, 31 December 2017 21:33 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Has anyone watched the dvd documentary? My local art house theatre is doing a one time showing of the doc in a few weeks and was wondering if it was worth catching.

EZ Snappin, Sunday, 31 December 2017 22:29 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I'm amazed and touched to find that (12-13 years ago) I started this thread!

Came here seeking views on TROUBLE NO MORE. Will read with interest. I just have the 2CD set.

the pinefox, Wednesday, 3 January 2018 14:34 (one week ago) Permalink

I didn't recall that there was a whole Clinton Heylin book on this. (Is there any Dylan he hasn't written a book about?)

Though quite a Dylan fan I have NEVER heard the Christian LPs before -- most of these songs come to me totally new. I find it remarkable that he played dozens of concerts, for months, playing ONLY the new songs, nothing from before c.1978 -- very unlike what he went back to doing later in the 1980s I think.

My sense is that the Christian message doesn't get in the way too much for me (though it's not my kind of message, especially as, as all know, it's so hectoring and aggressive) - maybe many of the other LPs had this kind of lyrical material anyway, just less concentrated? -- and the big bonus seems to be the band.

the pinefox, Wednesday, 3 January 2018 14:40 (one week ago) Permalink

Heylin book just came out last fall as a companion to the new Bootleg Series (a la his recent 1966 book). haven't read it yet, but plan on it ...
EZ, just finally watched the DVD and it's great. Michael Shannon sermons might be a little iffy for some, but I don't know, they add an interesting wrinkle ... I do wish that they'd also have included the complete Toronto show in pristine quality, but I guess YouTube will have to suffice for now. The semi-staged rehearsal footage at Rundown Studios is pretty interesting — the version of "Abraham Martin & John" that comes at the end is kind of stunning:

Would love a whole album made up of these Dylan / Clydie duets ... they sound amazing together here. There's an uncirculating session from 1982 apparently:

Rundown Studios

Santa Monica, California

1 June 1982

Clydie King session.

1. Standing In The Light

2. Average People

3. Average People

4. Average People

5. In The Heat Of The Night

6. Dream A Little Dream Of Me

Clydie King (vocal), Bob Dylan (organ, guitar, bass), Jimmie Haskell (piano).

tylerw, Wednesday, 3 January 2018 15:22 (one week ago) Permalink

oh yeah, that's a great little performance!

you have to be kind of fearless to sing with Bob like that, but here it totally works

niels, Wednesday, 3 January 2018 17:03 (one week ago) Permalink

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