28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Nobody Sings Dylan Like Heylin,
This review is from: Revolution in the Air: The Songs of Bob Dylan, 1957-1973 (Cappella Books) (Hardcover)
Clinton Heylin is the world's foremost Bob Dylan chronicler, researcher, biographer and author. But don't take my word for it - ask Mr. Heylin yourself. Actually you don't need to ask him; he'll tell you on his own or certainly strongly imply it. After reading dozens and dozens of Dylan books over the years, and being completely burned out on reading about Bob, Heylin is the only author that I will certainly read when he comes out with a new Dylan book. That being said I was concerned that Heylin's seemingly increasing arrogance and ego would mar this new book. Most people didn't think much of Clinton's recent book on The Beatles' Sergeant Pepper, which revealed more of the author's tastes than anything else. Happily he has reined things in here and produced an incredible book for enjoyment, information and even research. The first of a 2 volume series Heylin has taken on the task of discussing every single known Dylan-written song in the order they were written. This includes unofficial and even unheard songs. This volume covers 1957 - 1973. He discusses everything from Dylan's and others comments at the genesis of each song, early performance, influences and anything you can think of. It is a fascinating book. What sets Heylin apart from most other Dylanologists is his attention to detail and the truth, as well as his own dogged research. Instead of regurgitating popular opinions on Bob he takes nothing for granted. Heylin did not write this book because this is his latest project. It is my impression that he wrote this be read as THE definitive commentary on Bob Dylan songs 100 years from now. I believe that he has succeeded.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 29 Apr 2009 19:38:51 BDT
Mono Zygote says:
So...how is this different from Song & Dance Man III?
In reply to an earlier post on 1 May 2009 22:25:26 BDT
Completely different. This focuses on each individual song in the order they were written. I enjoyed Song and Dance Man 3 at the time I read it but that really goes off on a lot of different tangents at the whim of the author. That's not necessarily a bad thing if you're a Dylan nut (and you really do need to be to enjoy that one) but Heylin's book is much more specific and focused.
In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jun 2009 18:10:33 BDT
Kim Hatton says:
Much more manageable and concise and devoid of wadges of irrelevant footnotes.
In reply to an earlier post on 19 Dec 2009 15:26:05 GMT
Far from it. Both Michael Gray and Heylin are at the head of the pack when it comes to Dylan authors as far as commitment and intelligence. This book just breaks things down song by song, which can be refreshing if you've just waded through Song and Dance Man 3 - something I won't be doing again.
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