Front Row on Bob Dylan at 80

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Manage episode 293064071 series 1301220
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Front Row joins Radio 4's celebration of Bob Dylan, who will be 80 on Monday. John Wilson joined by Bob Geldof, to consider the art and influence of Bob, on Bob. Ann Powers, music critic for National Public Radio joins from somewhere on the Nashville Skyline. On Bob Dylan's first trip to Britain, in the winter of 1962, he and the great English folk singer Martin Carthy, met, became friends and performed together in small clubs such as the Troubadour (still going!). Bob Dylan acknowledges the influence of Carthy, whose versions of Scarborough Fair and Lord Franklin, for instance, inform songs of his such as Bob Dylan's Dream and Girl From the North Country. It will be Martin's 80th birthday on Friday, he's three days older than Dylan. Front Row drags him away from his celebration (and a rehearsal - Carthy, like Dylan, is still a hardworking musician) to remember those early days, and a winter so cold he and Bob chopped up an old piano for firewood. Kerry Shale stars with Richard Curtis, Lucas Hare and Eileen Atkins in Dinner with Dylan, the afternoon drama on Radio 4 on Saturday. Shale,a famously versatile voice actor, is intrigued by Dylan's voice and how it has changed or, rather, he has changed it. Using songs recorded over decades Kerry analyses how folky young Bob becomes hip, sneery Bob, then mellow country Bob, dangerous angry Bob finally exhausted Ancient Mariner Bob. 'I Contain Multitudes', Dylan says, using the famous phrase of Walt Whitman as the title of one of his songs. Poet Caroline Bird does some close reading of 'Visions of Johanna' and the writer Fred D'Aguiar, esonance of Dylan's early work in the wake of the murder of George Floyd Presenter: John Wilson Producer: Julian May

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