Fun fact about me: I’m a huge Bob Dylan fan. Well, to clarify, I absolutely love his early material. Some of his more recent stuff, like his last album Tempest or the Christmas album he released a few years back…aren’t my favorites. Mostly I think he’s devolved a bit over time, his voice broken down into something so raspy it’s even more difficult than usual to make out what he’s singing. I saw Dylan live for the first time last year, and even his classics are tough to recognize when he performs them, and it’s not just because they’re arranged in a completely different way. You listen carefully, and then you hear in a quick growl during a chorus, “…Tangled up in blue,” and suddenly it’s like someone flipped a light switch. Anyways, despite his age and his voice becoming more challenging to listen to by the day, the man continues his breakneck pace of recording and touring almost nonstop. How he pulls it off I don’t know, but it’s impressive. Despite his often challenging live shows, I encourage you to go see him, because what he lacks in vocals these days gets made up for via dynamic instrumental work. He’s incredible on the piano when he sits down behind it, which these days is pretty often. His backing band is fantastic as well. So there’s plenty of merits to a Dylan show in 2013, and honestly you’d best see this living legend because nobody knows how many years he’s got left either in performing or just in…you know, life. He’s just announced a bunch of new US tour dates, and the band’s he’s bringing with him couldn’t be better. They’re calling it the AmericanaramA Festival, and it’s Dylan, Wilco and My Morning Jacket all on one bill. I love all three of those acts, and can’t think of any other bands around these days that better define the word “Americana”. And here’s a neat little factoid for you that you may not know or remember: the fictionalized Bob Dylan biography I’m Not There, which came out in 2007 and featured a handful of different actors portraying the folk legend at different stages of his career (though the name Bob Dylan is never mentioned once in the film), had a soundtrack filled with bands and artists performing Bob Dylan songs. Jeff Tweedy of Wilco took on Dylan’s “Simple Twist of Fate,” and My Morning Jacket performed “Goin’ to Acapulco” (and did so as actors in the movie as well). Will collaborations happen on this tour in which all three bands are participating? It wouldn’t surprise me. I’d like to think that if you’re a fan of at least one of the three bands, you’ve got to at least like the one if not both of the others as well. To see all the dates and figure out if the AmericanaramA Festival is coming to your city, go here. Ticket presales for most dates start on Wednesday, so check on that info too if you’re interested. Now then, let’s take care of today’s Pick Your Poison. I’m happy to give a thumbs up to tracks from Broken Twin, Brother Dege (covering Black Sabbath), The Gap, The Hussy, The Money Go Round and So Many Details. In the Soundcloud section after the jump, stream songs from Disclosure, Andrew Cedermark, Man or Astro-Man? and S-Type remixing AlunaGeorge.
Three Kingz – Dreamin’
AlunaGeorge – Attracting Flies (S-Type Remix)
Andrew Cedermark – Canis Major
Disclosure – You & Me (ft. Eliza Doolittle)
The Holydrug Couple – Je t’aime Non Plus
Lemuria – Brilliant Dancer
Man or Astro-Man? – Disintegrate