Thursday, October 13, 2016

Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Literature Prize

It's about time that lyrics were regarded as poetry.



chickelit said...

The flood gates are open.

bagoh20 said...


chickelit said...

No bags, The Who are probably not eligible. Townshend wrote much of what Roger Daltrey sang. And besides, Moon and Entwhistle are dead. Wouldn't be prudent.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

Molière is reputed to be the first playwright to have the temerity to consider his work literature so it was only a matter of time.

ricpic said...

The Fruit Bat reappears!

Dylan's lyrics seem to be saying a great deal...but when you listen close they're the usual poetic doom and gloom pablum. That's right, pablum can be dark as well as light.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

Baby Boomers will not be denied!

I like Dylan. Best in Literature? Meh. Still, it gives me blog material for a few days and I am sure Ann is breaking out some wine and cheese to celebrate.

john said...

Well, at least some wine.

john said...

Duluth got up early to celebrate. Two folks were a little late.

Mumpsimus said...

Dylan's fans, like those of Dylan Thomas before him, seem to think that if it's obscure, and confusing, and musical, then it must be Deep, man. A thought process common to most 18-year-olds and, apparently, to Swedish academics.

I can think of only one really good poetic line in all the Bob Dylan I'm familiar with ("God said to Abraham, kill Me a son"), and that could be just monkeys and typewriters.

Meanwhile, Leonard Cohen has turned 82.

bagoh20 said...

I can't accept that they overlooked Lil B, and his “Wonton Soup”.

Dat be some rhymes doo day props.

john said...

Bob took his name from Matt Dillon. Troop would approve.

Lem said...

The Telegraph’s Tim Stanley believes that “a world that gives Bob Dylan a Nobel Prize is a world that nominates Trump for president”.

Chip Ahoy said...

I've used his songs to practice for decades and consider them great storytelling. Great, I tell you. Fantastic as in fantasy astic.

Blood on the Tracks has a few very good ones that I like very well for their graphic imagery, Isis, full of irrelevant details that that draw a picture in air. "I married Isis on the 5th day of May." What does it matter what day it was? It's irrelevant. "But I could not hold on to her very long." Now, that gets to the heart of the matter straight off. He chopped through a pyramid all covered in ice. What an outrageous liar! "Dividing line ran through the center of town." Now, there's poetic imagery right there.

Then, the song Black Diamond Bay is pure imagination and brilliant storytelling. Apparently this is on the album Desire as well.

You get straight to the story: attendez-vous s'il vous plait.

Up on the white veranda
She wears a necktie and a Panama hat
Her passport shows a face
From another time and place
She looks nothing like that

Perfect. Placement, description of location, characterization right off. Then all the odd things that people do when confronted with catastrophe. You can actually see a Greek ask for a rope and a pen that will write. Very nice touch, not just any ol' pen, one that writes.

I LOVE the "cranes fly away ... from Black Diamond Bay.

One reviewer hears T.S. Eliot's Prufrock and his failure in life, his fear of having failed in a world of failure.

And he hears Conrad in the changing of perspective that is central to Conrad.

In comments, a kindred spirit! A man says he's obsessed and translates his songs into Polish so they can be sung.

Another wonders why there isn't a short movie based on the song.

Another agrees to its cinematic elements.

Another says "incredibly evocative and visual." See? That's the thing, it's graphic. And wrong. He uses what he thinks works. Just made up.

Another compares it to Casa Blanca

So then, this right here is proof, as if any more is needed, there are too many others to mention, that Dylan really is literature award-worthy. I love the way he tosses his idiomatic wrongly phrased crap around as worthy language that works. Of his entire poetic catalog, these two son mis más favorito.

Amartel said...

Great, now fucking Bono's going to want one.

Michael Haz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Haz said...

So disappointed. My money was on Keith Richards winning the Nobel chemistry prize.

Methadras said...

I fucking hate Dylan. Whatever.

edutcher said...

Sorry, but this is like Pissy getting the peace prize.

There are a lot of his old things I liked, but he ain't no Rudyard Kipling.

Ah, well, at least someone we know is thrilled.

Michael Haz said...

So disappointed. My money was on Keith Richards winning the Nobel chemistry prize.

More like the chemistry survival prize.

Actually, he is quite the bibliophle.

ndspinelli said...

I also hate Dylan, have for decades. My hatred increased when I learned that lard ass @ TOP worships him.

Is it true Norm Crosby came in second in the balloting?

Sixty Grit said...

I think the world of Dylan. Musically, Blonde on Blonde was brilliant. Lyrically, there are some great songs, like Visions of Johanna, Stuck Inside of Mobile, Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat and Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands. I have never tired of listening to that album.

Nashville Skyline is another one I enjoyed.

John Wesley Harding is another brilliant album. Who doesn't need to travel with a gun in every hand, especially these days. I Pity the Poor Immigrant. Dear Landlord. All still relevant.

Very spare, musically, but great writing. So bring on the hate, he will be heading to the bank to deposit his prize money.

William said...

Right now I'm listening to the Basement Tapes album. He wrote some great songs, but most of his songs have been sung better by other artists.......It's good to see the Nobel people opening the field. Julia Child's contribution to the nexus of great lierature and good food was not recognized in her lifetime. Amy Schumer is a little young, but she brought some insights to her stand up material that make us all better human beings. Still, I would consider it an outrage if she wins before Seinfeld.

rcocean said...

If you'd told someone in 1948 that Irving Berlin had been given Nobel Prize in Literature instead of TS Eliot or say Robert Frost, people would've laughed their heads off.

What a fine joke!

Today its reality.

I'm actually amazed at how many people seriously think this is a good thing.

Conclusion: Literature is dead and been replaced by TV and pop songs.

chickelit said...

Lem said...The Telegraph’s Tim Stanley believes that “a world that gives Bob Dylan a Nobel Prize is a world that nominates Trump for president”.

I take that as a great omen.