New Again: Bob Dylan
In New Again, we highlight a piece from Interview’s past that resonates with the present.
On July 25, 1965, Bob Dylan plugged in his 1964 Fender Stratocastor electric guitar at the Newport, Rhode Island Folk Festival. Goodbye Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, hello Bob, the rock ‘n roll man. His decision was not well received at the time—although it was Dylan’s third consecutive year playing at the folk festival, it was the first time he received heckling from the crowd. Today, however, Dylan’s Stratocastor is considered “the Holy Grail” of music memorabilia. In celebration of Dylan’s once controversial decision, we’ve decided to revisit one of our favorite features with Mr. Dylan from February of 1986.
A few things about Bob Dylan, as told to Scott Cohen.
You can tell a lot about someone by what they don’t tell you. Sometimes a simple shopping list can be more revealing than a person’s life story.
A DOZEN INFLUENTIAL RECORDS:
“Lady’s Man,” Hank Snow.
“Lucille,” Little Richard.
“High Lonesome Sound,” Roscoe Holcomb.
“Tom Joad,” Woody Guthrie.
“Mystery Train,” Elvis Presley.
“Not Fade Away,” Buddy Holly.
“Molly and Tenbrooks,” Bill Monroe.
“Get Back,” Big Bill Broonzy.
“Chauffeur Blues,” Memphis Minnie.
“Riding On Train 45,” the Delmore Brothers.
“Ida Red,” the Smokey Mountain Boys.
“Pictures From Life’s Other Side,” Hank Williams.
FIVE BANDS I WISHED I HAD BEEN IN:
King Oliver Band.
The Memphis Jug Band.
Muddy Water’s Chicago Band (with Little Walter and Otis Spann).
The Country Gentlemen.
Crosby, Stills & Nash.
SOME MOVIES I WISH I WAS IN:
The Devil and Miss Jones.
I Was a Zombie for the FBI.
QUESTIONS YOU CAN’T ANSWER:
How does it feel to be a legend?
How does it feel to have influenced a bunch of people?
What did you change your name to?
Are you somebody?
Where’s your music taking you?
Did you write that song for me?
Did you know Nixon?
FIVE FAVORITE MOVIE ACTRESSES:
Hedy Lamarr (I can’t remember what she was in, though).
Dorothy Dandridge (I loved her in a movie she really needed, with Trevor Howard).
Marilyn Monroe (The Asphalt Jungle).
Jane Russell (The Outlaw).
Darla (Little Rascals).
THREE AUTHORS I’D READ ANYTHING BY:
Tacitus, Chekhov, Tolstoy.
TWO FAVORITE HOCKEY PLAYERS:
Sammy Williamson. Maurice “The Rocket” Richard.
THREE PET PEEVES:
Preachers who preach the “Wealth and Prosperity” doctrine.
Women who sit and eat meat all day.
Salesmen who slap you on the back and wink.
WHAT’S FOR DINNER:
Grilled corn on the cob black-eyed peas beet root salad spinach and pilaf deep-fried cauliflower French-fried chicken and gravy French-fried cabbage pinto beans and rice cocoa angel cake.
EVENTS I WISH I’D WITNESSED:
Custer’s Last Stand, Hannibal crossing the Alps; Lindbergh landing in Paris; Houdini on the East River.
MY LAST SLICE OF PIZZA:
Tony’s, Broadway and 46th Street, 1981.
A THREESOME I’D LIKE TO PLAY GOLF WITH:
Paul Gauguin, Lee Iacocca, Edward Teller.
A COUPLE OF ACTORS I’D LIKE TO PLAY ME IN MY LIFE STORY:
Billy Dee Williams. Mickey Rooney.
TIPS FOR GIRLS WHO’D LIKE ME TO LIKE THEM:
Tell me everything.
ONE THING I’D LIKE TO IMPROVE ABOUT MYSELF:
SOME GREAT MINOR MASTERPIECE:
“Bony Maronie,” “Surfin’ Bird, “”Lonesome Town.”
MY FAVORITE SHOT IN BASKETBALL:
The free throw.
A COUPLE OF PEOPLE I WOULDN’T MIND BEING FOR A MINUTE:
Roy Acuff. Walter Matthau. Leonard Cohen.
THE BEST CURE FOR THE BLUES:
SOME PLACES I WOULDN’T WANT TO GO BACK TO:
Auschwitz. Casino de Paris, Marseille. The Horse & Hounds Tavern, Edinburgh.
THINGS I’LL ALWAYS MISS:
Sweet kisses from the Black Queen, Trebuki Bay at sunset, white geese in the North Carolina sky, four angels blowing marble trumpets in Times Square.
SOME THINGS I’D RATHER FORGET:
Spaghetti at the airport in Helsinki, Lady Godiva at the cemetery in New Orleans, girl with the horse’s head in Mexico.
ONE THING I’D LIKE FOR VALENTINE’S DAY:
MY TWO FAVORITE INGREDIENTS IN JOHNNY CAKES:
Corn meal and maple syrup.
HOW TO LET HER DOWN EASY:
Tell her you’re down and out.
TWO TRUTHS THAT AREN’T TRUE:
God helps those who help themselves.
Actors get up at 5 a.m.
THE FURTHEST THING FROM MY MIND:
Perpetual youth and St. James’ Infirmary.
THE NEAREST FARAWAY PLACES:
Cuba. Isla of Patmos.
GAMES I PLAY:
He say, She say.
CLUBS I BELONG TO:
Merle Haggard Fan Club.
Franz Kline Fan Club.
Rockin’ & Rhythm Club.
Backup Rider Club.
ONE LAST FAVOR I’D LIKE TO ASK:
“Resist not evil, but overcome evil with good.”
SEVERAL THINGS STILL BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND:
Three Little Pigs.
The wages of sin.
Lester Young’s horn solo on “When Buddha Smiles.”