Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The Fourth Most Depressingly Influential Record Ever

4. Bob Dylan- Blowin' In The Wind

"How many roads must a man walk down before they call him a man?" How many, Bob? Say, about, ooh, six? What's that? The answer is blowing in the wind? Well, thanks for that, Bob. Not at all wasting my time, then.

I've always been suspicious of lyric-heavy music. Music, for me, is about feel first, and if the words make you think well, that's a bonus. Poetry simply set to music feels forced or jarring. And musicians don't seem to be best qualified to tell me about the world - a coke-addled hedonist is more than welcome to cheer me up or bring me down with a well-executed chord change, but get them to try to explain my existence in the universe and they're on pretty rocky ground.

Not that I don't love Bob Dylan. "Subterranean Homesick Blues" is a brilliantly surreal string of non-sequiturs, and his later work is wonderfully curmudgeonly - is there a more world-weary chorus than "I used to care, but things have changed"? But "Blowin' In The Wind" was the first in a long line of cod-philosophical yawners, the first link in a chain that ended with Sting singing about blue turtles.

My main problem with this song is that it inspired many, many oh-so-earnest singer-songwriters with lesser talents to have a go. Chris Martin, a would-be philosopher who contributed to Q magazine's recent Dylan tribute issue, sang "Climb up, up in the trees, Every chance you get, is a chance you seize." (Speed Of Sound). Which may apply to monkeys but says nothing to me about my life. Coldplay understudies Embrace are currently boring the arse off the charts with "Nature's Law", which features such platitudes as "you should never fight your feelings, when your very bones believe them... You have to follow nature's law." Yes, I'm sure that will stand up in court.

Alanis Morrisette, Oasis, Pete Doherty, all are guilty of producing lyrics which intend to be profound but in the end signify nothing. And it all started with Bob, and lines like, "how many times must a man look up, before he sees the sky?" Well, that one's easy. Assuming he's outside, just the once.

1 comment:

3l67frw said...

Get any Desired College Degree, In less then 2 weeks.

Call this number now 24 hours a day 7 days a week (413) 208-3069

Get these Degrees NOW!!!

"BA", "BSc", "MA", "MSc", "MBA", "PHD",

Get everything within 2 weeks.
100% verifiable, this is a real deal

Act now you owe it to your future.

(413) 208-3069 call now 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.