Saturday Spins

Christopher Bradley

Christopher is a lawyer from NEPA, aka, Pennsultucky, He is an avid baseball fan, audiophile, and dog owner. He spends the majority of his free time with his wife and daughters, reading, listening to music, watching baseball (except the Yankees) and writing. If you wish to send him a positive missive, any errata concerning albums, or requests regarding albums: saturdayspins32 at gmail dot com

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8 Responses

  1. Mike Schilling says:

    The musicianship on BoB is outstanding, but I think the songs on Blood on the Tracks are stringer overall.Report

  2. PD Shaw says:

    he evokes regret for staying in the state “a day too long,” much like the guys from My Cousin Vinny; or was that Alabama?

    I think more like when one goes down to Highway 61, one never knows where one might end up, perhaps stuck in Mobile, wanting to get back to Memphis, or headed to New Orleans, but tangled up in a fishing boat right outside of Delacroix. The character is a drifter whose been “in trouble ever since I set my suitcase down.”

    I’m pretty sure Dylan was living in New Orleans at this point, riding his Harley into the country and cherishing encounters with the characters he meets. Whether or not he is the drifter or not, probably doesn’t matter. But could be.Report

  3. PD Shaw says:

    Also, a few of the lines from “Mississippi” were borrowed from prison chain gang songs recorded by John Lomax and his son during the Great Depression. John Lomax sang the song “Rosie” when he returned to Greenville, MS at the age of 80 for a city commemoration, and by some accounts he collapsed and later died after singing the lyric “stayed in Mississippi one day too long.” Sounds a bit too on the nose to me, but he apparently he sang a “Rosie” song, but which one?

    Lomax thought Rosie must have been a prison prostitute or follower as the prison allowed conjugal visits from time time, and “Rosie” is a lament about the prison guard making life tough, perhaps limiting access to Rosie or the money to keep her, giving rise to thoughts of suicide, cascading into threats of violence to kill or otherwise fix the snitch. Dylan also borrows from a second Rosie song, “Long Gone,” in which the singer thinks back to what Rosie had said and if he’d listened to her, he would still be in her bed, but instead he got to “running around” until he was jailhouse bound. These seem to be different Rosies, one Saint and the other Whore. One the prisoner is looking back to with regret, and the other he is looking forward to, but may be impeded.Report

    • Christopher in reply to PD Shaw says:

      I think the Lomaxs’ (John, Alan, John Jr.) odyssey to catalog uniquely “American” music in danger of being lost to history is a big reason why Bob’s last three records have been rearrangements of songs from the so-called “Great American Songbook.” I wonder if Bob’s “borrowing” could be in some way his intention of preserving a lot of unique and obscure art and literature?Report

      • PD Shaw in reply to Christopher says:

        I think Dylan was covering or borrowing from old blues men from early on, though that may not stand out because a lot of musicians were doing that in the 60s. I’m not as familiar with his most recent records. But the one time I saw him live was at the 1993 New Orleans Jazz Festival, and he opened with a cover of Stephen Foster’s “Hard Times Come Again No More.” Seems like he was branching out to some obscure over-century old classics.Report

  4. DW Dalrymple says:

    Great piece. I look forward to reading more about your collection.Report

  5. Michael Cain says:

    So, where do you stand on the CD-vs-vinyl debate?Report

    • I think that can be a topic for another time, but in short, when I was a teenager I bought a lot of CDs before the advent of the $0.99 MP3. I cant confirm or deny use of Napster, Limewire, BitTorrent at that time. I started collecting vinyl around 2007-2008. Now, I only purchase CDs if they are a box set release from an artist that wont be available on wax. As far as sound quality, vinyl is superior sounding, and it isn’t even close. Even with seemingly mediocre equipment, there is no substitute to listening to music on vinyl. Am I an effete snob, yes. Do I sully my ears with low-quality digital music, also yes.Report