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A Simple Twist Of Fate: Bob Dylan and the Making of Blood On the Tracks (Anglais) Broché – 9 février 2005

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Book by Gill Andy Odegard Kevin

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BOB DYLAN STOOD AT A ROW OF VENDING machines with his five-year-old son Jakob, feeding loose change into the coffeemaker, selecting the brew he would sip for the next three hours in the studio down the hall. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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26 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Essential for fans of this album. 23 février 2004
Par Jeffrey H. Schulberg - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
For those who don't know, Blood on the Tracks was recorded in NYC in late 1974. Dylan then re-recorded 5 of the tracks with local Minnesota musicians and released the album in 1975. It went on to be one of his most successful albums ever. It's a great treat to have one book focus on one classic album. This book goes into every possible detail of the recording of these 10 songs, from who they were written about, how and where they were recorded, to how the musicians were chosen. There is a lot of detail into the actual recording from the musicians who played on both the NY versions and the Minnesota versions which is pretty interesting b/c some of them did not like Dylan's recording process while some of them thrived in the improvisational nature of it. The most interesting piece is hearing how the Minnesota musicians feel 25+ years later about not being credited in the liner notes--some are upset, some are surprised, and some just don't care. This is a terrific book and I can only hope that similar books will be written, focusing specifically on Blonde on Blonde or Bringing it all back home.
12 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Are we rolling, Bob? 1 septembre 2004
Par William C. Altreuter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Books about the "Making Of" an album seem to be coming out with increasing frequency. Ashley Kahn has written two excellent books about the making of classic albums: "Kind of Blue" and "A Love Supreme", and among the albums in the rock cannon deserving of this sort of treatment, "Blood on the Tracks" has to rank pretty high. It is an iconic recording, with a great back story: by far Dylan's most confessional work, he recorded two versions: one in New York, with Phil Ramone producing, and then, after deciding he wasn't satisfied with that, a second, with uncredited musicians in Minneapolis. The version that was ultimately released has some of the New York tracks, but is mostly the Minnesota sessions. We have access to some of the alternate, New York tracks (including a version of "Simple Twist of Fate" that I had not known about, on the "Jerry McGuire" soundtrack)-- the lyrics differ slightly, and the sound overall is more introspective and intimate. What would the original have been like?

Regrettably, the book is not up to the standard Kahn has established for others working in this genre. When it focuses on the task at hand-- the making of the album, what went on during the sessions, the response to the record-- it is interesting stuff, albeit a little bit more technical than anyone probably cares about. I suppose the microphones that were used, and the makes of tape decks, and the brand of tape are interesting in a way, but not really so very interesting as to merit inclusion in an already thin book that has been puffed up with stuff about Nixon and Vietnam that reads like it was cribbed from some news magazine's end of year wrap-up. I'm really looking for more stuff like the fact that Mick Jagger was in the booth getting wasted while the steel guitar parts were being overdubbed. Or the thoughts of the musicians as they worked through this material. Or the backgrounds of the Minneapolis guys, who were, it turns out, local jazz musicians. Or the story about taking "Tangled Up in Blue" up a key, to A, forcing Dylan to sing at the outside of his range, and lending the song a haunted quality missing from the earlier take-- or subsequent live versions.

We probably know as much as we ever will about Dylan's personal life from the songs themselves, although some of the gossipy bits are interesting-- I enjoyed the stuff about the Columbia A&R woman he seems to have written "You're Going To Make Me Lonesome When You Go" was written about (so that's where Ashtabula is!). There is enough interesting new information here to make a worthwhile, in depth magazine article. The rest is so plainly filler that is actually annoying. I never fell for "Self Portrait", and I was never fool enough to buy "Dylan"-- the album of "Self Portrait" out-takes, but buying this comes close.
19 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The fascinating story behind Dylan's "Blood on the Tracks" 5 mars 2004
Par Lawrance Bernabo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Last night I attended "Blood on the Tracks Live" at the Pantages Theater in Minneapolis, " at which Kevin Odegard and the other uncredited Twin cities musicians who recorded with Dylan 30 years ago played the entire album live (some of the band members and some invited guest artists, such as Mary Lee Kortes of Mary Lee's Corvette, did the singing). Eric Weissberg was also in attendance, so the NYC contingent was represented as well. "A Simple Twist of Fate: Bob Dylan and the Making of Blood on the Tracks" is really the first book on Dylan that I have read, even though he is a native of the Zenith City (I was out on the deck grilling listening to his concert with Paul Simon when Dylan pointed out he had been born over the side of the hill), so none of this was old hat to me. This was also the first book about the making of an album so I was fascinated by the details: learning how Odegard's suggestion for changing the key for "Tangled Up in Blue" made such a difference in the vocals is an example of the memorable detail that made this book worth the reading.
The setting is thirty years ago, when Dylan's marriage to his first wife Sara Lowndes was falling apart and he recorded "Blood on the Tracks," considered by many to be one of the greatest breakup albums of all time. "Rolling Stone" magazine listed it as #16 on the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time List, putting it behind "Highway 612 Revisited" (#4) and "Blonde on Blonde" (#9) in terms of the Dylan oeuvre. The songs were all written in two weeks and originally recorded in just a week with the bluegrass band Deliverance in September of 1974. However, in December of 1974 Dylan played the album for his brother David Zimmerman in Minneapolis, who urged recutting some of the songs with unknown local musicians, thus setting up the great debate over which sessions yielded the greater glory. For the record (pun intended) the five Minneapolis tracks were "Tangled Up in Blue," "You're a Big Girl Now," "Idiot Wind," "Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts," and "If You See Her, Say Hello." However, because the album covers had already been printed, Odegard and the rest (drummer Bill Berg, bassist Billy Peterson, guitarist Chris Weber, keyboard player Gregg Inhofer, and mandolinist Peter Ostroushko) did not get credit.
I also found it interesting to reconsider the album as setting "a new benchmark in confessional songwriting," because I have never really thought of "Blood on the Track" in those terms. I had known that Dylan repeatedly dismissed the idea that this album provided great insights into his psyche, but then that is not exactly the sort of thing you would expect a writer to easily confess to anyway. After all, he once introduced "Tangled Up in Blue" onstage as taking ten years to live and two years to write. For me the lyricism was always the main attraction. Ironically killing time before the concert we went to go see the less than worthy film "Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen" in which the title character gushes on about her rock star idol who is the greatest poet since Shakespeare; I have always considered Dylan a legitimate poet and would just point to the titles of songs like "Tangled Up in Blue" and "Simple Twist of Fate" as being emblematic of his stature as a lyricist.
Consequently, since "A Simple Twist of Fate" the book focuses more on the musical part of the equation. Specifics on chords and what key the harmonica is in are pretty much lost on me, but Odegard and his co-author, journalist Andy Gill, take pains to put such things in terms that neophytes like me can appreciate. For those who are interested in how current events and personal biography work their way into music attention is paid to that side of the creative process as well, although obviously Odegard is primarily concerned with what happened in the studio. The idea that "Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts" could be done in one take boggles the mind.
The end result for me is more of an interest in reading more about the nuts and bolts of the act of creation for other great albums than in wanting to read more about Dylan. The MC at the show last night was doing a nostalgic trip down memory lane, asking the audience to remember what it was like the first time they heard "THE ALBUM," and when he pulled the LP out of the brown paper bag it was "Sgt. Pepper." Of course it is now sadly a pair of Beatles too late to really get the full story on that particular classic album, but I am sure we can all think of some other treasured albums that gets into this sort of detail and not the shallow skimming we get on VH-1 specials.
Final Note: Best songs in the concert? Clearly "Idiot Wind" with vocals by Adam Levy of the Honeydogs. The encore piece, when everybody came on stage to do "Tangled Up in Blue" again comes in second.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Behind the Scenes 2 janvier 2007
Par Publius - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Throughout his songwriting career Bob Dylan's creativity knows no bounds. Dylan effortlessly swings back and forth from folk to rock-a-billy to gospel to blues. In 1974, Dylan was looking for a new sound, but at the same time to get back to his roots. The album "Blood on the Tracks" was the successful culmination of this effort, and the album continues to be Dylan's most popular. "A Simple Twist of Fate" gives the everyman's version of the making of this album. Most Dylan fans know that "Blood" was recorded once in New York City and once in Minneapolis. It is clear that the authors favor the Minneapolis sessions not only because one of the authors played on the tracks, but because the sound that was produced seemed crisper. One of the leading gripes of the New York session musicians is that they did not have time to practice or warm up before Dylan went right in to the music. Besides that Dylan kept changing around the chords without any warning to the musicians. Eventually, those same musicians realized that Phil Ramone (the New York producer) "was only interested in getting Dylan on tape. It didn't matter what any of us played. That could be dealt with later.' Because of the various problems with the New York sessions, Dylan went back to the mid-west where his brother set up another session. This session, according to the authors, was a much more successful endeavor. As a result, the album itself is a mix between the relative confusion of the New York session and the more temperate Minneapolis session. Throughout the book, the authors attempt to offer contextual analysis of the album but almost wholly concentrating on the vagaries of Dylan's break-up with his wife. The last third of the book drags itself down with various gripes of the Minneapolis session musicians who did not receive credit for their input. This is the principal weakness of the book and takes away from the strength of the very interesting behind the scenes narrative that the book offers.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A Most Rare Book from Masterful Musicians All 'Round 27 janvier 2006
Par Katherine Graham - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
First, I must apologize for not quite "getting it" (this book) at the outset. It is a most rare book not only because it is about Bob Dylan's creation of arguably his best album ever; but the authors have written from the masterful point of view of "the musicians" who worked with Dylan all 'round. One not only learns about how "records" back then were engineered and produced but the most fascinating material like why Bob Dylan never used a capo on guitar; why Graham Nash and Steven Stills thought these miraculous songs in the raw were not up to their expectations; why the musicians had difficulty keeping up with Dylan and ultimately gained a deeply profound respect for not only his songwriting ability but extremely complicated musical gifts on a variety of instruments. You will be thrilled to read this especially if you have ever attempted to seriously play solo, or as part of a band and "the gig" let alone - anyone aspiring to do so...now. A great book.
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