At my daughter's Bat Mitzvah service, I read some lyrics from "Forever Young". I told her they were from the great Jewish poet Robert Zimmerman because she didn't like Bob Dylan - well, she didn't really know if she liked Bob Dylan or not, because she couldn't get past his voice.
That's so unfair. Do I tell her that Dane Cook is a lousy comedian because he's not funny? (Yes, I do). But people shouldn't put artists in a box; who's to say what "good" singing is? Bob Dylan is the voice of the people and the people are raspy and untrained.
The great Jewish poet Robert Zimmerman now has a Christmas album out. I was alerted to this by al in la (his name is Al and he lives in LA).
When Gary Burbank was alive, I used to write songs for his radio character, Bob Man, who sounded a great deal like Bob Dylan. Coincidentally, Bob Man has a Christmas album coming out also. Here are a couple samples:
BOB DYLAN'S WHITE CHRISTMAS DREAM:
While riding on a train going west,
I fell asleep for to take my rest.
I dreamed a dream that featured snow,
On a white Christmas like the ones I used to know.
With icy leaves, the tree tops glistened
For sleigh bell sounds, the children listened,
Ten thousand dollars for your days to be bright
I’d give that, to make your Christmases be white.
BALLAD OF A FROSTY MAN
You run down the streets of town
With your broomstick in your hand
Though the sun is baking
You say, "Let’s laugh and play, man."
A cop says stop
But you pass his raised hand
Are you fairy tale
Or a jolly soul?
Because, something is happening here
Since that hat went on your head,
Frosty, man of snow.
Given the mess of Christmas, Judaism, and Dylan in my history, the Bob Dylan Christmas album would make an excellent Christmas or Hanukkah gift from my daughter, don't you think?
(The "Hard Snow" album cover is not mine, it's from here.)
If you don't know the tunes, you can listen here: