Friday, October 23, 2015

'65

The amazing part of '65 was what was on the radio and what was, like Rubber Soul and Pet Sounds, on the horizon. Frankly, in 1824 there was only one Beethoven's 9th. Nothing else was on the charts with a bullet. 

50 years ago, "Like a Rolling Stone" was the track that Bruce Springsteen said, "kicked open the door to your mind." Nothing to my knowledge, in pop music, has ever been so completely iconoclastic, and at the same time, so harmonic and emotionally electrifying. The result is a song of epic, revolutionary standards. Dylan's angry shouts, the soothing harmonica, the juxtaposed twang and flutter of the guitar, the random bells and whistles come together to create an unbelievable masterpiece of folky "electric" rock. Dylan is buoyed on this record by Al Kooper, Mike Bloomfield and a cast of musicians who get rhythm and take us into places we never knew could exist.  Smart and soulful rock and just really cool shit. "The first two lines, which rhymed 'kiddin' you' and 'didn't you,' just about knocked me out," Dylan told Rolling Stone in 1988, "and when I got to the jugglers and the chrome horse and the princess on the steeple, it all just about got to be too much." Cool, huh? 

To have been there, and to have grasped the immensity of the coming year would have brought me to tears.  As it was, I was too young to remember (sad face). Can you imagine though? Help! and Revolver, Coltrane's A Love Supreme, "Try a Little Tenderness," The Rolling Stones' Out of Our Heads, "My Generation," "Heart Full of Soul," "Strangers in the Night," "California Dreamin'," all within a year. Take that 1824! 

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