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Working On A Guru,
This review is from: Another Self Portrait (1969-1971): The Bootleg Series Vol. 10 (Audio CD)
Further evidence that Dylan rewards his fans more than anyone in releasing not only unreleased material but stuff that is worthy of the original releases themselves. Self Portrait for sure is flawed but had many highlights. So here are some highlights:
1) Great sleevenotes. Love the way Greil Marcus' original review from Rolling Stone 'What is this s***?' is turned into 'what this s*** is'.
2)Tattle O Day Hilarious lyric, should have been on the album, in place of Minstrel Boy for example.
3)Alberta 3 so much better than 1 and 2. What was Bob thinking?
4)The live Isle Of Wight tracks: both better than what turned up on Self Portrait. I love Levon's shouted backing vocal! I am a little pissed off that the entire Isle of Wight concert is only available on the super expensive box set edition, but that is not what I am reviewing here.
5)When I Paint My Masterpiece: good demo, although I prefer the original lyrics to the rock'n rolla lines here. Bob's piano is great.
6)Railroad Bill simple but effective
7)Thirsty Boots easily should have made the album. At the expense of the pretty poor and incongruous 'Like A Rolling Stone' Isle Of Wight version. Why did Self Portrait include such live tracks as they just destroy the continuity of the album.
8) Annie great song, should have replaced Alberta 1 or 2 or 'I've Forgotten More'
9) This Evening So Soon Genuinely moving.
10) Copper Kettle without overdubs, same: moving
11) Working On A Guru: fun song,not great but featuring George H so of specila interst to us Beatles/Dylan fans
12) Spanish Is The Loving Tongue: perhaps the best track here,superb and much better than the later released version (although the 'Dylan' album from 1973 is mysteriously unavailable still!
13) Pretty Saro amazing
Personally the New Morning songs don't do much for me or improve on the album versions. The Nashville outakes are tantalising but I would have preferred a full set of those! But there is so much value for money here that I doubt you will be disappointed.
35 tracks here for a very reasonable price. Wish Bob's contemporaries would reward us so richly. Maybe the reason is because there isn't as much good material still to be released from those folks. We can quibble over the original albums' song selection but here we have it both ways.
'All the tired horses in the sun. How am I supposed to get any ridin' done?' Even that is a great line. So evocative. Even Greil Marcus has reversed his opinion.