Friday, August 21, 2009

Mainstream Dylan

It never ceases to amaze me how, in the last decade, the Dylan brand has been transformed into a mainstream commodity.

This week’s evidence, from the two leading local supermarket chains:

* Tesco has the new starter compilation CD, Bob Dylan: The Collection on its value racks, at £3!

* Sainsbury’s is stocking the paperback edition of Dylan On Dylan, the latest book of interviews, edited by Jonathan Cott, on its high volume sales racks – at a giveaway £4.99.

For those of us who grew up regarding Dylan as a cult figure, this mass market visibility – and the positioning of Dylan product as impulse buys alongside the BOGOF foodstuffs and discounted cases of beer – is little short of amazing.

And not a little challenging.

Gerry Smith