Monthly Archives: August 2013

The Cinch Review

Another Self Portrait – Bob Dylan (Bootleg Series Volume 10)

Review of Bob Dylan Another Self Portrait Bootleg Series 10I burst out laughing yesterday. I was listening to “Wigwam,” the version of the song on the new release from Bob Dylan, Another Self Portrait: The Bootleg Series Vol. 10, without the overdubs from the original Self Portrait album in 1970. Heard this way, it is a very unassuming performance: voice, guitar, piano: a pleasant, contemplative melody. I think that it is, in its way, a joke, however, because, while there are no lyrics, Dylan sings “la da da da” type stuff throughout. Put that together with what he said (in 1984) about the original 1970 release of Self Portrait, and how he wanted to alienate the people who were looking to him for big statements and answers:

I wish these people would just forget about me. I wanna do something they can’t possibly like, they can’t relate to. They’ll see it, and they’ll listen, and they’ll say, ‘Well, let’s get on to the next person. He ain’t sayin’ it no more. He ain’t given’ us what we want,’ you know? They’ll go on to somebody else.

What better way to do that than for the great lyricist and poet and “voice of a generation” to record a song with nothing but “la da da’s” in it? Continue reading Another Self Portrait – Bob Dylan (Bootleg Series Volume 10)

The Cinch Review

50,000 Stray Dogs in Detroit

50,000 Stray Dogs in DetroitSome say fifty thousand. Some say twice that number. No one questions that there are tens of thousands of owner-less dogs in an American city that once had a population of 1.8 million people and now has perhaps 700,000 human inhabitants remaining. Dogs left behind by their owners breed with others and roam the city in packs and singly, traveling empty streets and using abandoned houses as dens.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who saw this story and thought of these lines from William Blake, from his “Proverbs”:

A dog starved at his master’s gate
Predicts the ruin of the state

The ruin of Detroit is a reality. Whether it be a harbinger of much more of the same … well, keep an eye on your pooch. Please. Continue reading 50,000 Stray Dogs in Detroit

The Cinch Review

Property of Jesus – Chrissie Hynde

Property of Jesus Bob Dylan Chrissie HyndeI don’t know exactly when this performance by Chrissie Hynde of Bob Dylan’s song “Property Of Jesus” took place, but it’s embedded via YouTube at the bottom.

I’d heard reference before to Chrissie Hynde singing this song, and was curious about it, but I hadn’t actually heard it until I came across this clip the other day. The rendition is word perfect and tightly-performed, so it’s clearly not a casual or one-off thing. Musically, Bob Dylan’s original on Shot of Love from 1981 is pretty much straight-ahead rock & roll, but Chrissie Hynde and her band turn it into a kind of shuffle, and a pretty groovy one at that. Continue reading Property of Jesus – Chrissie Hynde