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Chronicles: A Bob Dylan Series (Anglais) Relié – mars 2005

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--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché.
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Revue de presse

"A remarkable achievement, and like Henry Miller's best personal writings, it is a story that opens up the times that it portrays, and then reveals the possibilities of the human spirit."
-- Mikal Gilmore, Rolling Stone --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché .

Présentation de l'éditeur

The celebrated first memoir from arguably the most influential singer-songwriter in the country, Bob Dylan.

"I'd come from a long ways off and had started a long ways down. But now destiny was about to manifest itself. I felt like it was looking right at me and nobody else."

So writes Bob Dylan in Chronicles: Volume One, his remarkable book exploring critical junctures in his life and career. Through Dylan's eyes and open mind, we see Greenwich Village, circa 1961, when he first arrives in Manhattan. Dylan's New York is a magical city of possibilities -- smoky, nightlong parties; literary awakenings; transient loves and unbreakable friendships. Elegiac observations are punctuated by jabs of memories, penetrating and tough. With the book's side trips to New Orleans, Woodstock, Minnesota and points west, Chronicles: Volume One is an intimate and intensely personal recollection of extraordinary times.

By turns revealing, poetical, passionate and witty, Chronicles: Volume One is a mesmerizing window on Bob Dylan's thoughts and influences. Dylan's voice is distinctively American: generous of spirit, engaged, fanciful and rhythmic. Utilizing his unparalleled gifts of storytelling and the exquisite expressiveness that are the hallmarks of his music, Bob Dylan turns Chronicles: Volume One into a poignant reflection on life, and the people and places that helped shape the man and the art. --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché .

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Par Un client le 18 février 2005
Format: Relié
From one of the great music talents comes a masterful memoir of life in the early stages of his life. It is well worth the purchase and you will find it to be most memorable.
Other memoirs to look for: Nightmares Echo by Katlyn Stewart and A Paper Life by Tatum O'Neil.
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Format: Relié
Ca ressemble plus a une serie d'anecdotes qu'a une veritable autobiographie. Les premieres chapitres sont fantastiques lorsqu'il evoque son arrivée dans NY, ses references, ses rencontres avec Guthrie, les harcelements de certains fans.
Apres c'est un peu moins interessant.
Il y a pas de grosses infos qui n'etaient pas deja connues.
J'aurais aimé qu'il en dise plus sur son accident de moto.
A conseiller qu'aux fans.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x8ebde930) étoiles sur 5 493 commentaires
372 internautes sur 391 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8ebef4c8) étoiles sur 5 So much for enigmas 27 octobre 2004
Par John Flora - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
When I was in college back in the mid-1960s, I remember a piece in the student newspaper that sought to explain the new folk music phenomenon Bob Dylan. I wish I had a copy of that story today, just to see how it matches up with the man revealed in Dylan's new autobiography, Chronicles Volume One.

My dim recollection is that the sophomoric student article painted Dylan as an inscrutable eccentric trickster, deep yet elusive.

That's pretty much the general impression I've had of Dylan since I first heard him around 1964 or '65. And, of course, I thought of him as the conscience and voice of my generation.

Well, it turns out that he's neither, as least not in the way most of us thought.

Dylan, in his own words, comes across as a regular guy who just wanted to do his job and go home to his family without being hassled by every freak and geek who imagined him to be the new Messiah.

In a recent radio interview on NPR - the first he's given in my memory - he's asked if he ever thinks about walking away from music.

"Every day," is his comeback.

The book reveals a devoted family man who has spent much of his life plugging away at his craft and trying to shield himself and his loved ones from the glare of offstage attention.

The further I went in the book, the most shared impressions and cultural perceptions I discovered. I became a grandfather earlier this year and have been wrestling with the idea and its implications of advancing age and life changes. I feel a whole lot better about it now that I know Dylan owns a "World's Greatest Grandpa" bumper sticker.

Oddly enough, many of us thought of him as the voice of our generation while at the same time seeing him as detached and set apart from the rest of us.

It turns out that he's much more one of us than we realized and it's probably more accurate to think of him as the voice of every generation, whether they know it or not.

This is an invaluable book because it demystifies Dylan and blows away all of that "mad genius" stuff that has swirled around him for 40 years.

My son, who owns a recording studio, is getting this book for his birthday this year for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the chapter on working with producer Daniel Lanois in New Orleans.

I find maybe two books a year that I just can't put down. This is one of those books.
84 internautes sur 88 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8ebef714) étoiles sur 5 Even Better Than Expected. 24 novembre 2004
Par V. Messner - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Some people have said this book doesn't reveal enough about Bob Dylan's personal life and that it skips around too much. I feel differently. Far as self-disclosure goes, Bob Dylan will never write a tell all, because that's just not the kind of person he is. I was very happy with the many personal thoughts and experiences he did share in Chronicles; he was way more open that I expected. This book does not read like a normal story. It's true. Bob doesn't always stick to a chronological line, but in no way does that detract from this unique and wonderful book. The joy in reading this autobiography doesn't lie in seeing Dylan neatly connect the dots. For me, it is just in taking each thought as it comes and enjoying it. Bob explains everything he's seen and done down to the most minute detail. In the book Dylan claims to "never forget a face," and I believe him. He certainly has close to a photographic memory. He remembers things from 30 years ago that I would have forgotten about yesterday - he's a professional observer if there ever was one. It's really unbelievable. It's easy to see that he's a very well read individual. This you will see in the book, as he elaborates and gives interpretations on the works of author after author, poet after poet. His unique personal writing style is no doubt a result of these many influences. I enjoyed this book more than anything I've read in a long time. I eagerly await Chronicles, vol. 2. and if you find Bob Dylan fascinating, I'd highly recommend Chronicles, vol. 1.
56 internautes sur 58 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8ebef6d8) étoiles sur 5 Not "autobiography", but essential for even casual fans 11 octobre 2004
Par Robert P. Inverarity - Publié sur
Format: Relié
So the man has finally gotten around to writing about himself in prose, and you're thinking of grabbing this, the first fruit. A few remarks are in order, then, to help you decide whether to shell out the bucks. First I want to banish some possible misconceptions (ones I had and you very well might share); then I'll take a longer view of the book and tell you why I think it's worth five stars.

First, it's not an autobiography in the usual sense of the word. Sure, Bob is writing about himself and what he's done, but time flows freely forward and back and the subject changes (sometimes radically) every few paragraphs. He doesn't indulge in much self-justification, he doesn't try to chart a distinct arc of personal development, and it's not rare for him to start down a detour that screams for more exploration and then to turn the bus around. The comparison to X-Ray, the autobiography of Ray Davies of the Kinks, isn't entirely justified -- I don't think Dylan fictionalized much -- but Chronicles is closer in spirit to that than to more conventional rock autobiographies.

Second, Dylan lets you into his mind but he doesn't much open his heart. Suze Rotolo is the subject of some lyrical reminiscence, for instance, but their relationship is kept very abstract -- maybe he's protecting her privacy, I don't know. He talks about his love for his wife and kids at length in the "New Morning" chapter, but they never even show up as characters! His second (?) wife does show up in the "Oh Mercy" chapter, but she remains nameless and faceless. The only emotions Bob really describes are awe for his idols in his early days and frustration and loathing for himself in the "Oh Mercy" period.

Third, and finally, don't overestimate how much ground it covers. At 293 pages, the book is short; the font and the large amount of whitespace padding make 293 pages sound longer than it is. I read the book in just about five hours of reading, and much of that time my pace was leisurely. The content is pretty rigidly circumscribed, too: the first, second, and last chapters cover his early life and career, in Minnesota and in New York (1949-62); the third and fourth his "New Morning" (1969-70) and "Oh Mercy" (1988-89) periods, respectively. There's only a handful of anecdotes that fall outside those ranges.

One brief, nitpicky comment before I praise the book: Dylan needed a better proofreader than he got. I know he missed at least one deadline with the manuscript and probably more, and so publication was likely something of a rush-job, but he has a tendency to use words whose meanings elude him ("incredulously" instead of "incredibly" -- facts don't tend to be credulous), and a sharp set of eyes should have caught them in a once-over. The grammar, on the other hand, is better than some have given him credit for. On the other hand, I wouldn't be surprised if awe of the man stood in the way of proper proofing.

Anyhow, my three corrections to misconceptions could be taken as negatives. If it's got these problems, you might say, why is it worth five stars? My answer to that is that the man has a way with words, and just 'cause he won't be tamed by chronology & word choice & all that jazz doesn't mean that his recollections aren't delightful.

The book doesn't resemble a chronological biography so much as a Jim Jarmusch movie, a collection of short anecdotes tied together with a declarative sentence here or an interrogatory paragraph there. Dylan, who's rapidly turning into everybody's favorite dubious grandpa, full of funny stories and odd ways of looking at the world, sheds light on his influences, his contemporaries, and his colleagues that are alternately revealing, funny, incisive, and patronizing, but always entertaining. The anecdotal approach he's chosen couldn't be better suited to his personality or even his view of life (after all, Louie the King, Georgia Sam, and God shared the same song). For sheer entertainment value, Volume One of Chronicles slays the rest of the Dylan bookshelf.

Postscript: there's a six-song companion CD available for free from some retailers with two unreleased songs ("The Cuckoo" from the Gaslight and the original demo of "Dignity") and four released tracks from "New Morning" and "Oh Mercy" ("New Morning", "Father of Night", "Man in the Long Black Coat", and "Political World"). Keep your eyes out.
108 internautes sur 124 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8ebefcb4) étoiles sur 5 My Back Pages 6 octobre 2004
Par Sam Spade - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Since Bob Dylan published Tarantula in 1966 his autobiography has been anticipated with some trepidation. Would it be as unreadable? Would it lay to rest the misinformation spread about him and by himself. Well, it is certainly readable, and it is in fact beautifully written in a style that flows and rolls with ease. This is certainly not a book of self-analysis, nor self reflection. It is a book of reminiscences and astute observations and characterisations of people and places, and is particularly engaging in conveying the vibrancy of Greenwich Village in the early 1960s. The style is reminiscent of a detective novel, using the typical tricks of the genre, and of film, in using flash-backs and leaps forward, as he chronicles his way through the early years of fulfilling what he believed to be his destiny. He describes listening to Ricky Nelson while waiting to be called to sing at Café Wha, and then relates how ten years later Nelson was booed off the stage for changing direction. Nelson was a man with whom he could empathise, having gone through the experience many times himself.

This is not a history. Bob Dylan is born on page 29, and after gliding through various episodes, including signing for John Hammond at Columbia records, he returns to describe his home town of Hibbing Minnisota on page 229. In between there is a sudden leap to 1987 when he is recuperating from a hand injury, and artistically burnt-out. He begins by describing a meeting with Lou Levy, the music publisher at Leeds Music, just after arriving in Greenwich Village and ends the book by telling how Al Grossman, his manager, gave him $1000 to buy himself out of the deal shortly after.

His character sketches of the people he knew are precise and incisive, such as of Tiny Tim, later famous for his hit, sang in a falsetto voice accompanied by a ukulele, `Tip-toe Through the Tulips',. In describing Bob Neuwirth, who became a close friend, Dylan writes, in Raymond Chandler style: `Right from the start you could tell that Neuwirth had a taste for provocation and that nothing was going to restrict his freedom. He was in a mad revolt against something. You had to brace yourself when you talked to him.' Neuwirth appears in the Dylan Film `Don't Look Back', and these character traits are evident in his treatment of Joan Baez.

There is a good deal of self justification in the book. Dylan tries to put the record straight on a few mythologies that have surrounded him. He treats in a cursory manner his well known predilection to fabricate stories about his own background. He explains how when confronted with Billy James the publicity man for Columbia Records, he felt intimidated by his Ivy League Harvard presence, telling him that he was from Illinois, worked on construction in Detroit, had no family, and had rode into New York on a freight train. He doesn't explain why he lied about his past to his friends, nor does he try to analyse how hurt his parent were at being disowned by him. He is quite bitter in remembering how Joan Baez criticised him for abandoning the folk movement. He vehemently denies having been a spokesman for a generation, but this is disingenuous. He didn't feel comfortable with the responsibility of being hailed as a spokesman, but there is no getting away from the fact that he consciously wrote songs, such as `Bowing in the Wind', Playboys and Playgirls', and `The Times They are A' Changin' in order to appeal the social conscience of his generation. After Kennedy's assassination he felt distinctively vulnerable, and did not himself want to become a target. He has on many occasions denied that he took his name from Dylan Thomas, and once famously said that `I have done more for Dylan Thomas than he ever did for me'. In this book he talks about the process of choosing a stage name. He had thought of calling himself Robert Allyn, changing the e in his own name to a y. At about the same time he read some Dylan Thomas, and imagined that Dylan must have changed his name from Dillon to Dylan. Bobby Dylan, he thought, was too much like Bobby Darin, and anyway there were too many Bobbies making records. He settled on Bob Dylan, because it sounded right, not because he had any particular liking for the poetry. In fact, in an interview in Robert Shelton's archives, Dylan explicitly say that he disliked Dylan Thomas' flowery and affected style.

Fans who were won over to Bob Dylan by the strength of his lyrics will be disappointed that he talks only of the process of writing songs, but not of their content. He makes no attempt to explain their meaning, nor to analyse their impact. This is not surprising given that when asked about the meaning of his lyrics he always got irritated and dismissed the questions with such curt answers as `I don't know, man'.

The book is not an act of self-disclosure, the mask is not taken from the face, and there is very little sense of the emotional life of the author. He says very little about intimate relations, except to express his desire to protect his wife and family from the gaze of publicity, and to complain of the constant invasion of privacy. He also says very little about his relationship with Joan Baez, or St, Joan as she was pejoratively known.

Bob Dylan's Chronicles are well worth the wait, and while they do not allow the reader too great an insight into the inner life of the artist, they reveal a great deal about his psychology, and how he is still prepared to be economical with the truth on many issue. In fact, he reveals a great deal about his manner of writing when he talks of himself and Bono, of U2. He says that they are very alike in that `We can strengthen any argument by expanding on something either real or not real' (p.175).

36 internautes sur 39 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8ebefed0) étoiles sur 5 Annoyed 29 août 2005
Par Nichole Hersey - Publié sur
Format: Relié
I was reading 1 and 2 star reviews of this book and got sick of the whining and complaining by their respective authors. Bob doesn't tell us what his songs mean, Bob doesn't tell us about his wives and kids, bla bla bla. Look, Bob's going tell what Bob wants the public to know, and what he tells in the book I found interesting. It was like hearing someone tell stories that happened during his life. We all do that with our families and friends. What is wrong with him talking about what he feels fit? Why can't people accept the fact that he doesn't want his personal life open to the general public??? Once that happens, maybe they might find the book an interesting read.

Aside from this, I did find the book intereseting and funny. I liked the flow of the language. I enjoyed reading his descriptions of things, how he saw them, and how he saw himself. You can learn a lot about people by listening to the way they talk and how they perceive themselves (whether it is an accurate perception or not).

Reviews were written saying that he seems like less of a genius and more human...duh...Hasn't Dylan been saying that for 4 decades? Now that some people have read his book, they finally believe it. Maybe the book does give more insight to the man than they thought!!

If you are looking for juicy gossip about Bob, this is not the book for you. I can't believe that people expected him to write about affairs he had, rude things he said, or whatever. Maybe this would have been better...Chronicles Vol 1: Bob Dylan's Failures. Unfortunately, people would have eaten it up like vultures because today's society thrives on sex and other's misfortunes. Who in their right mind is going to write a book telling total strangers all of their faults, failures, and personal problems during their lifetime? Would you?

Hey, if you are a Dylan fan, read the book. If you aren't, why did you buy it in the first place???
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