Bob Dylan is one of the most influential singers and songwriters of the 20th century. He is known for songs that chronicle political and social issues.
Bob Dylan is a folk-rock singer, who signed his first recording contract in 1961 and later emerged as one of the most influential and original voices in American music history. Bob Dylan has continued to tour and released studio albums including Together through life (2009), Tempest (2012), and Fallen Angels (2016). Dylan has received many prestigious awards including Grammy, Academy and Golden Globe award. He has also received Presidential Medal of Freedom and Noble Prize for Literature.
The early life of Bob Dylan
Bob was on May 24, 1941 in Duluth, Minnesota as Robert Allen Zimmerman and graduated from Hibbing High school in 1959. After getting influenced by the early rock stars like Little Richard, Elvis Presley, and Jerry Lee Lewis, he formed his bands and started performing folk and country songs at Local cafes as Bob Dillon.
How the actual singing started and career took on?
Bob Dylan moved to New York after getting dropped out of college. In New York, his idol the legendary folk singer Woody Guthrie was hospitalized with a rare hereditary disease of Nervous system.
He regularly visited his idol in his hospital room and somehow became regular in the folk clubs and coffee houses in the Greenwich village. He met many other musicians there and began writing songs at a very surprising pace. He also wrote a tribute song to his ailing hero “Song to woody”.
Later in 1961, he signed a recording contract with Columbia Records, after one of his performances received a rare review in The New York Times and then he legally changed his surname to Dylan. The recording contained only two original songs but effectively proved in showcasing his traditional style singing which touched the hearts of people all around the world.
But what made Bob Dylan’s most original and poetic voice in American music history, was his album The Freewheelin which released in 1963.
And later his next album, The Times, They are a-changin’ completely and firmly established him as a definitive and ultimate songwriter in the 60s protest movement. His reputation has only increased since then after he gets involved with one of the movement’s established icons, Joan Baez, in 1963. Bob and Baez’s romantic relationship didn’t go too far and lasted only for two years but it helped and benefited both the artists immensely. While Bob wrote many songs fir Joan, Joan took Bob to many concerts to perform together. In 1964, Bob did almost 200 concerts. Eventually he became tired of his role as a folk singer, songwriter, and in 1964, he introduced his fans to his new side which was more personal and introspective. The collection of songs he introduced was less politically charged as compared to Bob’s previous efforts.
On July 25, 1965, at the New York folk Festival, Bob performed electrically for the first time and everyone was astonished and loving it. After that his albums, Highway 61, Revisited, and its song ‘Like a Rolling stone’ and some other songs, posted Dylan as one of the most innovative ones in the industry. Dylan brought together Music and literature like one else ever had, with his more than perfect voice and those unforgettable lyrics. He continuously reinvented himself for the coming three decades and also wrote the film’s soundtrack which became a hit.
Rock star life
Bob Dylan began his full time touring in the 1980s, with Tom Petty, Heartbreakers, and The Grateful Dead. In 1993, after returning to his folk roots, he received the Grammy award for his album World Gone wrong. Later in 1989, Bob was introduced in the Rock n Roll Hall of fame. “He has breakthrough the limitations and changed the face of Rock n Roll forever”, Bruce Springsteen said in the Hall of fame ceremony.
In 1997, he received the Kennedy Center Honors, which was considered as the highest award for artistic excellence. Bob was the first rockstar ever to receive that award. His 1997 album Time out of mind, won him three Grammys. In 2000, he did a song for the film Wonder Boys, named “Things have changed”, the song was awarded a golden globe and an academy award for best original song.
Later he released his chronicles volume one: the first in a three-book memoir series. He also gave his full interview in 20 years for his documentary which was released in 2005, titled No Direction Home: Bob Dylan. The documentary was directed by Martin Scorcese.
In addition to all those prestigious awards, in 2012 he received Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama and in 2016, the legend received the Noble Prize in literature.
Apart from Baez, Bob had some romantic time also with singer Mavis Staples. He also wished to marry her, but the two never tied the knot.
Dylan and Lowndes, who got married in 1965 but divorced in 1977. They had four children together, Jakob, Jessee, Anna, and Samuel. His son Jakob, is also the lead singer of Popular rock Group Wallflowers. Bob also adopted Lowndes’s daughter, Maria, from her previous marriage. Bob is doing Music and paintings and has published several books on paintings and has exhibited his artwork around the world.
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