Few, if any, artists of the past 75 years have led a career with the immense wealth of creative work as Bob Dylan. Born Robert Zimmerman in Duluth, MN on May 24, 1941, Dylan would begin to set popular music on a new course by the time he turned 22.
With his second album, 1963’s The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, he introduced his unparalleled craftsmanship of song in “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “Girl from the North Country,” “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall,” and “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right,” and became the country’s most popular folk singer and the adopted voice of his generation. When he released Bringing It All Back Home in 1965 though, Dylan had abandoned his post, alienating much of his audience by focusing less on overtly cultural and political topics in favor of a more personal, and of course, more electric approach to songwriting and performing.
This would be the first indication of a trend in Dylan’s career that saw him shifting from folk singer to rock and roll frontman (Highway 61 Revisited; 1965), country balladeer (Nashville Skyline; 1969), confessional singer/songwriter (Blood on the Tracks; 1975), Christian proclaimer (Slow Train Coming; 1979), and late-night crooner (Shadows in the Night; 2015), and that’s to name only a few of his personas…not to mention skip the ’80s, ’90s, and ’00s entirely.
And if not all of his recordings have managed to be consistently excellent (and many are), they have at least always been consistently intriguing. As we approach Bob Dylan’s 75th birthday this coming Tuesday (when we will celebrate with a full day of his music on #XPNDylanDay), the folks here at Sleepy Hollow give you a few of our favorite recordings from Bob Dylan’s vast catalogue.