Today’s random track was recorded by Bob Dylan and The Band in 1967, as part of the casual sessions that were eventually released on 1975’s The Basement Tapes. Before that release, an alternate version of the song appeared on Dylan’s second greatest hits collection in 1971.
Here’s a song from Bob Dylan’s great 1997 album Time Out of Mind, a “comeback” record that earned him the Album of the Year Grammy. Amazingly, this is the only Dylan release to ever win Grammy’s top honor.
‘Standing in the Doorway’ is a highlight of this elegiac album. It’s about the end of a relationship, but like most songs on Time Out of Mind, it feels like it’s just as much about the end of life.
Planet Waves definitely falls closer to the Blood on the Tracks side of that continuum, even if it doesn’t come close to the heights of that classic. Its songs are thoughtful meditations on love and death with rich backing music provided by The Band, and it fits nicely just below the top tier of Dylan albums.
Here’s a live version of Bob Dylan’s ‘Masters of War,’ recorded in 1963 at Town Hall in New York City. This song appears in Martin Scorsese’s 2005 documentary No Direction Home and later on the Bootleg Series release of that film’s soundtrack.
Those who read my criticism of Jackson Browne’s overtly political songs might wonder why I’m not similarly dismissive of this track. And it’s a fair question.
Here’s another of Dylan’s early classics, the title cut from his 1965 album Highway 61 Revisited. This was Dylan’s first “rock” album, with only closer ‘Desolation Row’ recorded on acoustic instruments.