Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Dylan's credibility

Thanks to Martin Cowan:

“In view of the reaction to what seemed to me to be my reasonable questions about Dylan's credibility, here are some more thoughts.

“Dylan has enjoyed remarkable critical acclaim since 1997 and, by association, his fans benefit from this because the acclaim ensures there is ample access to product (all those books, cds and dvds) and if he is deemed to be popular, he'll keep coming back to play shows.

“Remember how, due to comments that were made after the Isle of Wight, he vowed never to play in England again - and didn't for 9 years. Hard to believe, when you think how often the NET has come round over the last 12 years. Of course, compare this to Tom Waits, who lives a near reclusive lifestyle, releases sporadic critically acclaimed albums, plays one night in London (and this for the first time in 17 years) and yet still maintains his artistic vision.

“I guess what I'm thinking is that, critics being critics, Dylan must be about due a critical downturn, and I guess my thought process was that an inferior LP, and inferior shows could spark this.

“His "people" are capitalising on this acclaim - films, DVDs, painting exhibitions, books, adverts - but I wonder what say he has in this kind of thing?

“Whose idea is it to advertise? Would he rather play the O2, or a smaller, more intimate, venue? Or does he not care? And if he doesn't care, should we?

“I should add that I am hoping for something different and interesting from a new record, and in the past it was often said that no two LPs were the same.

“These were the kind of things going through my mind. It will be interesting to see what happens when/if there is a new album, and I do wonder how the O2 show will go down.”