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Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan

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Bob Dylan is generally considered the premiere poet/songwriter of his generation, and has been one of the most influential figures in music and pop culture for more than four decades. Born and raised in Minnesota, Dylan first rose to prominence in the early 1960s as an acoustic singer/songwriter coming out of the Greenwich Village scene in New York City. His songs defied pop music convention and appealed to the counterculture with lyrics that incorporated political and social commentary, as well as philosophical and literary influences.  

Dylan took a huge artistic risk in the mid ‘60s when he went electric, much to the dismay of many of his fans. But Dylan’s albums during this time and songs such as "Subterranean Homesick Blues" and "Like a Rolling Stone" were huge critical and commercial successes. Dylan helped bring a lyrical depth to rock and roll that hadn’t existed before, and many of his peers have credited him with helping to turn rock and roll into a truly meaningful art form. This made Dylan the de facto, if reluctant, spokesperson of a generation. Martin Scorsese’s 2005 documentary "No Direction Home" provides an in-depth look at Dylan’s artistic evolution between 1961 and 1966. 

Dylan’s backing band in the mid '60s, the Hawks, later rose to prominence on their own as the Band. Several of Dylan’s songs became even better known when covered by others, such as the Byrds’ version of "Mr. Tambourine Man" and Jimi Hendrix’ incendiary cover of "All Along the Watchtower," which Dylan himself would later credit as the definitive version. Dylan has collaborated with many other musical luminaries over the years, including Joan Baez, the Grateful Dead, Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton, Johnny Cash and Neil Young. He was also a member of the Traveling Wilburys. 

Bob Dylan was named one of TIME Magazine's 100 most influential people of the 20th century, and in 2004 he was ranked #2 in Rolling Stone Magazine's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, second only to the Beatles. Among his many influential accomplishments, Dylan is credited by the Beatles for turning them on to marijuana in 1964. 

He continues to tour, and many fans say his performances in the 21st century are better than those of the preceding two decades. His most recent studio album, Modern Times, released on Aug, 29, 2006, entered the U.S. album charts at #1, making him, at 65, the oldest living person to top the charts. 

Dylan on the Web: 

Official site
Includes discography, lyrics, sound files and tour dates. 

ExpectingRain.com
Fan site includes the latest set lists and news articles about Dylan. 

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Dylan was inducted in 1988. 

TIME Magazine’s 100 most influential people of the 20th century
Features a career retrospective. 

Bob Dylan’s MySpace page

Dylanchords.com
A comprehensive archive of chords and lyrics for Dylan songs. 

The BBC
Features profiles and biographies, timeline, video and pictures, competitions and reviews. 

PBS
PBS Dylan page that accompanies the production of Martin Scorsese’s Dylan biopic, No Direction Home.

Quotes: 

"All the great performers had something in their eyes. It was that 'I know something that you don't know.' And I wanted to be that kind of performer." 

"I don't know how I got to write those songs. Those early songs were almost magically written." 

"It was like a flying saucer landed. That's what the 60s were like. Everybody heard about it, but only a few really saw it." 

"A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do." 

"Fame threw me for a loop at first. I learned how to swim with it and turn it around -- so you can just throw it in the closet and pick it up