Musical Influence #2: Mr. Bob Dylan and Bob Marley

Now I think no one will ever put together Bob Dylan and Bob Marley in the same sentence. There are too many reasons that make it a cosmic blast of rock heroism. First there are two different styles of music.  Secondly that is too much iconic rock for one to listen to at once. The reason I put the Bob’s in one sentence is because in this recent election year many bands and singers stated their views or tried sticking it to the man. Even the Grateful Dead did a concert for their political party. But these two men revolutionized music in so many ways that to transcend it all in one blog is impossible. But their musical force lead people to free themselves from the political realm and it alone started political free speech issues in songs.

First Bob Dylan was a new renaissance of music. He was also the last force of folk music in America with Woodrow Guthrie. Dylan, a now Pulitzer prize winner, moved and transformed music if we like it or not. When he went to electric in 1965 with one of his greatest songs “Subterranean Homesick Blues”. In the same year he released his highest U.S. hit with my favorite song “Like a Rolling Stone”. Then in Rolling Stone magazine named Dylan’s ” Like a Rolling Stone” the number one song of all time in 2004. His career was not a highlight film for his entire life. His career almost did get off the ground especially when your real name is Robert Allen Zimmerman. So he started introducing himself as Bob and later added Dylan to his greatness. Also having a name like Johnny Cash help you out as an ally does not hurt either. Dylan saw his lyrical poetry to help listeners envision a story of life that all could understand. He captured the meaning of the times and they were “changing”.  Not only is Bob Dylan an iconic figure he was a story teller that led a generation and future generations into their lives with their own personal soundtracks.

He can be known as one or “the” greatest musical artist of all time. Also he brought electric sound into the mainstream other than Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry in American culture. He made pop music and culture’s gateway into the 60’s for the new musical revolution of drug-enthused  music. But his lyrics were so poetic and still are today that he has been nominated for many other awards even a Nobel prize. Bob Dylan was smart in how to connect to a generation of people. And his generation was a confused young nation of music lovers. Though his songs talked about life, culture or politics he and this next artist knew what culture really meant.

On the other hand, Bob Marley was not just a face or a but a nation too. His music uplifted a culture and its message in many ways. His story-telling ability allowed his Jamaican peoples and all his listeners to see  the struggle he  and his people consistently went through. But Bob Marley and Bob Dylan moved a culture of musical rebellion. This rebellion was one of tyranny of musical power. His Legend album is one of the most gross selling albums of all time. His music became the face of a musical sound of the entire world. Their is no mention of reggae music without bringing up the music influence of the Marley family. Though maybe some of his ideas seem obscure his grace and style led a nation’s story to be told. When trying to describe the man, Bob Marley, into words many come to mind: Music, reggae, lyrical genius, marijuana, revolution, optimism, anguish and hero. Hearing the music of Bob Marley for the first time is like an exploration of feeling that a music listeners has never gone on. His music is like a drug that can make anyone feel a universal well being of optimism in any mood.

Bob Marley once had said, “Every man gotta right to decide his own destiny”, he choose his life everyday and even Dylan had chosen to do the same thing. Both have lived a musical dream that many wish they could endure but there were many tests each had to pass to live out their dreams. their music lives on forever. Many bands and artists have tried to teach themselves with the lyrical story telling of Dylan to the musical passion of Marley, but only few have mastered close it. Only artists like Ben Haprer and my favorite band, O.A.R,  come to mind. Some bands to try to cover but few can replicate. If anyone wants to see a great concert this summer see the sound of Bob Marley then head to a O.A.R. concert with opening guests on selected dates because The Wailers are their opening act this tour. And during the concert there will be covers of Bob Marly songs with his band. So check it out…


2 Responses to “Musical Influence #2: Mr. Bob Dylan and Bob Marley”

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