XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of the Week: “Up To Me” by Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan | photo by Barry Feinstein | courtesy of the artist

More Blood, More Tracks: The Bootleg Series Vol. 14 is the latest collection of material from Bob Dylan’s vaults and his vast recording history. This time around, the focus is on perhaps what many of his fans and historians consider to be one of his greatest albums, Blood On The Tracks, originally released in January 1975.

Often bootlegged, this new Dylan collection makes these previously unreleased songs available officially for the first time. More Blood, More Tracks includes over 70 previously unreleased tracks, and every surviving take from the Blood On the Tracks recording sessions. Collected on this are the studio recordings made by Dylan during six sessions in 1974—four in New York (September 16, 17, 18, 19) and two in Minneapolis (December 27, 30).

While Blood on the Tracks was originally recorded during in New York City, after the album was mastered and review copies began to circulate, Dylan felt the album needed a different approach, so he rerecorded five of the tracks at Minneapolis Sound 80 Studios beginning in late December of that year.

While a few of the outtakes from the original New York sessions have been highly prized by bootleggers and collectors, most of these recordings have never been available in any format. For the Dylan completists there’s a 6 CD deluxe version of More Blood, More Tracks, and a single CD with with alternate takes of each of the 10 songs appearing the original Blood on the Tracks, plus a previously unreleased version of “Up to Me.”

“Up To Me,” included on More Blood, was one of the songs recorded during the New York sessions on September 19th, 1974. A different version of this was released on Dylan’s Biograph album in 1985, and it was covered by Roger McGuinn (The Byrds) on his 1976 album, Cardiff Rose. Soncially and lyrically, “Up To Me,” could have fit in on the final official release of Blood On The Tracks. The song has similarities to “Shelter From The Storm,” but only the singer-songwriter will ever know why he didn’t include on the final album.

Listen to it below.

Bob Dylan and his band play in Atlantic City at the Hard Rock Hotel on November 17th, followed by a seven night run at the Beacon Theatre in New York at the end of November. He plays a sold out show on Monday, December 3rd at the grand opening of The Met Philadelphia.

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