By the late-60's, Bob Dylan was reportedly fed up that everybody (and their dogs, and their fleas, and the bubonic plague) were calling him the 'voice of a generation'.
I mean, what had Dylan done exactly, to earn such distinction? During the peak of his popularity, he specialized in writing derivative blues and folk music with surreal lyrics. Big deal! That's hardly worthy of being dubbed with such a massive title. Or at least, Dylan didn't seem to think so.
When he set out to defy this role, with the quiet release of John Wesley Harding
, it proved to be too popular to deter his fanbase. Thus, he followed it up with Nashville Skyline
, an album that's pure country music through and through. So what does his fanbase think of country? I bet they hated it.
He also sings here in a rather bizarre high-pitched country crooner's voice. I still remember the first time I played this album, fresh from the music store - I thought to myself 'Who the hell is that?' For months, I thought he had hired a different singer (I suppose this sudden change will at least give people who profess to disliking his Mr. Wheezebags's voice a bit of a break).
Well Dylan failed once again, because his fans really love this album too. Can we blame them? Or, rather, can we blame ourselves? (I've never met anyone who dared said he/she didn't like Nashville Skyline
... but then again, I don't meet many people these days who listen to anything other than The Dave Matthews Band).
I mean, who could ever possibly dislike an album with something like “Lay Lady Lay” on it, which is one of the dreamiest songs I've ever heard? I'm sure you know it by heart ... it's characterized by that descending chord progression played on light electric organ, a watery slide guitar, and woody percussion. The melody, delivered by his frankly beautiful (but still goofy) singing voice, is quite charming. Easily, that's a song that can be taken to heart - and it has been, by millions.
by Reviewer: Don Ignacio
(blogging at Don Ignacio's Album Reviews