Bob Dylan, Performing Artist

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Bob Dylan, Performing Artist: The Early Years, 1960-1973
Bob Dylan Performing Artist 01.jpg
Cover of the paperback edition
Author Paul Williams
Country UK
Language English
Subject Music Of Bob Dylan
Genre Non-fiction, Criticism
Publisher Omnibus Press
Publication date
May 1, 2004 (2nd edition)
Media type Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Pages 310 pp
ISBN ISBN 978-1-84449-095-0 (2nd edition, paperback)
Bob Dylan, Performing Artist: The Middle Years, 1974-1986
Bob Dylan Performing Artist 02.jpg
Cover of the paperback edition
Author Paul Williams
Country UK
Language English
Subject Music Of Bob Dylan
Genre Non-fiction, Criticism
Publisher Omnibus Press
Publication date
June 1, 2004 (2nd edition)
Media type Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Pages 334 pp
ISBN ISBN 1-84449-096-3 (2nd edition, paperback)
Bob Dylan, Performing Artist: Mind Out Of Time,1986-1990 & beyond
Bob Dylan Performing Artist 03.jpg
Cover of the paperback edition
Author Paul Williams
Country UK
Language English
Subject Music Of Bob Dylan
Genre Non-fiction, Criticism
Publisher Omnibus Press
Publication date
August 8, 2005(2nd edition)
Media type Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Pages 416 pp
ISBN ISBN 1-84449-831-X

Bob Dylan, Performing Artist is a series of three books written by music critic Paul Williams concerning the music of American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan. Unlike many other books about Dylan, these are not biographical but focus primarily on the performances delivered at various concerts over a period of almost forty years. The performances Williams analyzes were either personally attended or reviewed from audio-tapes (and sometimes from videotapes). In an interview published in Isis magazine's August 1990 issue, Williams told interviewer Derek Barker, "I didn't want to write about the person, I wanted to write about what this person has created, his art, his music."[1] Bob Dylan, Performing Artist is considered one of the leading critical analyses of Dylan's songs and performances.

The Early Years (1960-1973)[edit]

The first volume of the Performing Artist series, which covers the years 1960 through 1973, also recounts Dylan's childhood from his birth in May 1941 to August 1959. Early Years ends in December 1973 with Williams' review of the album Planet Waves.

The Middle Years (1974-1986)[edit]

Middle Years is the second book of the series, covering from January 1974 to September 1986 and ending with a review of the album Knocked Out Loaded.

Mind Out Of Time (1986-1990 & beyond)[edit]

The last of the three volumes spans from September 1986 through September 1990. As the word "beyond" in the title implies, Mind Out Of Time includes two reviews by Williams of albums recorded after 1990, Time Out Of Mind (1997) and Love and Theft (2001). The reviews were previously published in the magazine Crawdaddy!. Williams does not provide an explanation for omitting reviews of other post-1990 albums such as Good as I Been to You and World Gone Wrong.

Reception[edit]

All three volumes of Performing Artist were widely acclaimed by critics. Rolling Stone magazine described the series as "Substantial, compelling...a voyage of rediscovery." American poet Allen Ginsberg commented, "Paul Williams historicizes Dylan's genius of American tongue."[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1] Paul Williams' interview by Derek Barker
  2. ^ [2] Paul Williams' web page