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William C. Altreuter
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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Dylan's closing song lately has been "Stay With Me" a Frank Sinatra obscurity written by Jerome Moss and Carolyn Leigh. (It is on Sinatra 65, a Sinatra side that is unfamiliar to me, but which comes from the period when he could sing the phonebook. It's got "My Kind of Town" on it, and "Luck Be A Lady", which establishes once again that Guys and Dolls was oddly cast.) Full Moon and Empty Arms, now this. As Louis Armstrong said, "Man, all music is folk music. You ain’t never heard no horse sing a song, have you?" As a faithful listener to Bob's radio show it is no surprise that he thinks that way, and after Christmas in the Heart can anyone be surprised by anything he puts out? In 1965 Dylan released Bringing It All Back Home and Highway 61 Revisited, indisputably two of the most important albums in American music, and certainly more significant than Sinatra 65, but all of these sides can be listened to today with pleasure, and why not hear what Bob hears in his head when he thinks of these songs? If he'd released a collection of Sinatra songs instead of Self Portrait, wouldn't that have been amazing?


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