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Playlist: Five Songs to Listen to When You’ve Hit the Skids


1. Desolation Row
2. Going, Going, Gone
4. I Pity The Poor Immigrant
5. Dear Landlord


Bob Dylan 101 Playlist: Five Songs to Listen to When You’ve Hit the Skids

1. Desolation Row [Highway 61 Revisited – Columbia – 1965]
“They’ve got him in a trance / One hand is tied to the tight-rope walker / The other is in his pants.” Everything and nothing. Nothing and everything. The history of humanity perhaps or maybe just maybe what it reveals only confuses the Minotaur more.

2. Going, Going, Gone [At Budokan – Columbia – 1979]
Recorded at Nippon Budokan, Tokyo Feb. 28 & Mar. 1, 1978. This double live album will get under your skin. Nothing is what it seems and that turns out to be a very good and gallant thing.

3. Po’ Boy [“Love And Theft” – Columbia – 2001]
Bing Crosby could have sung the heck out of this jazzy number. You want Ernie Kovacs? Groucho Marx? Well how about Bob Dylan who would be the ultimate variety show impresario. This song is Shakespeare and Henny Youngman all rolled up into a tragic and hilarious tour de force. “Poor boy, in the hotel called the Palace of Gloom / Calls down to room service, says send up a room.”

4. I Pity The Poor Immigrant [John Wesley Harding – Columbia - 1967]
John Wesley Harding is an album that does not get the due it absolutely deserves. A modern day record of parables that today speaks even louder truths. This song is a good one to play when you’ve hit the skids because it sweeps the cobwebs from all the abject failures we like to dress up as our biggest successes.

5. Dear Landlord [John Wesley Harding – Columbia – 1967]
Talk about a poison pen letter. Bob’s just telling us exactly how it is as he scorches the very earth in the process. Here’s a song that can destroy you while at the same time build you up. It’s funny how he can do this and make it seem so effortless. “Now, each of us has his own special gift / And you know this was meant to be true / And if you don’t underestimate me / I won’t underestimate you.”

Charles Cicirella

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