80 GOOD REASONS To Celebrate
BOB DYLAN’S 80th BIRTHDAY THIS MONTH
1. His previous 79 years.
2. Most notably, between the hours of 8 and 9pm on the evening of May 17, 1966 in the Manchester, England Free Trade Hall.
3. Chronicles: Volume One.
4. Blonde on Blonde …in MONO, of course.
5. Not to mention Columbia single # 4-43683.
6. “It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)” …Before the Flood version especially.
7. He recorded no less than Elvis’ “That’s Alright, Mama” at his very first “electric” session …in 1962!
8. He recorded his first – and so far only – # 1 song at the age of 78.
9. He totally gets Smokey Robinson.
10. He wrote the best-ever Picnic song.
11. Introduced the Fab Four to jazz cigarettes (…Is it any wonder then that he later…)
12. Portrayed the coolest-ever Wilbury.
13. His Theme Time Radio Hour.
14. The band he used when he performed at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965.
15. The wig he used when he performed at the Newport Folk Festival in 2002.
16. “I’m looking for a place that will collect, clip, bath and return my dog. I want a dog that’s gonna collect and clean my bath, return my cigarette, and give tobacco to my animals, and give my birds a commission. I’m looking for somebody to sell my dog, collect my clip, buy my animal and straighten out my bird. I’m looking for a place to bathe my bird, buy my dog, collect my clip, sell me cigarettes and commission my bath. I’m looking for a place that’s gonna collect my commission, sell my dog, burn my bird, and sell me to the cigarette. Gonna bird my buy, collect my will, and bathe my commission. I’m looking for a place that’s going to animal my soul, knit my return, bathe my foot and collect my dog. Commission me to sell my animal to the bird to clip and buy my bath and return me back to the cigarettes.”
17. In fact, the entire Eat the Document film.
18. His performance at the 1991 Grammy Awards.
19. His Lifetime Achievement Award acceptance speech at the 1991 Grammy Awards!
20. His 1963 Tom Paine Award acceptance speech …possibly.
21. “If Dogs Run Free”.
22. “The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll” …listen to the melody, too.
23. Invited Rolling Stone Jones over during the Great Northeastern Blackout of 1965.
24. Asked Frank Zappa (!) to produce the Infidels album.
25. His canned goods inventory scene in Peckinpah’s Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid.
26. His Live Aid, um, performance.
27. His $4 million, twelve-acre, ranch(es)-style six bedroom, seven bathroom, recording-studio-equipped onion-shaped copper-domed Point Dume “Malibu Taj Mahal” complete with 20-foot whale-tiled fireplace and vintage full-sized automobile suspended from the living room ceiling.
28. Has more unauthorized bootleg recordings out there than the Beach Boys have Greatest Hits albums.
29. That rap number he recorded with Brian Wilson.
30. That limo ride he took – and filmed – with John Lennon in 1966 (see # 17).
31. Always carries a large light bulb.
32. Always remembers to remember Buddy Holly.
33. Masked and Anonymous.
34. “I’ll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours”: he said that.
35. His harmonica playing.
36. His lead guitar playing …on the first 12 bars of “Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat” especially.
37. Jimi Hendrix’s “All Along the Watchtower.”
38. Suze’s “Cough Song”.
39. Race Marbles’ “Like a Dribbling Fram” even!
40. He walked out on Ed Sullivan (unlike Jim Morrison and Mick Jagger).
41. But, he had breakfast with then-governor Jimmy Carter in 1974.
42. He recorded the definitive version of “The Boxer.”
43. He recorded the definitive version of “Froggie Went a-Courtin’.”
44. He even recorded the definitive “Yesterday” …with George Harrison on guitar!
45. His masterful telephone etiquette with A. J. Weberman.
46. His Victoria’s Secret commercial.
47. Those long, pretty damn dirty fingernails on the cover of Nashville Skyline.
48. That long, damn funny promotional video for his Original Mono Recordings box set.
49. His long-time friendship, and mutual admiration society, with Johnny Cash. (also see # 17) (again).
50. His Chopped Liver band.
51. His “Must Be Santa” video!
52. “Lenny Bruce”.
53. Elston Gunn(n).
54. Renaldo and Clara …yes, all FOUR hours of it.
55. He hung out – a LOT – in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (with Grizzly the Wrestler) during the making of the (little-seen) Hearts of Fire movie.
56. He not only hung out, but motorpsycho’d around New Orleans with Eric Burdon during the making of Oh Mercy.
57. Tarantula (especially page 10).
58. Wrote “Lay Lady Lay” for the Everly Brothers and/or Midnight Cowboy.
59. Recorded “Buckets of Rain” with Bette Midler.
60. Auditioned Dharma Montgomery for his band.
62. Got the non-evil eye from Gorgeous George.
63. Got Milton Glaser to paint his idol’s name into the hair on his Greatest Hits album poster (see # 7).
64. He (inadvertently) wrote the theme song for Absolutely Fabulous.
65. He showed up on Pawn Stars
66. …to autograph his Self Portrait, no less !!
67. Performed for the Pope.
69. Soy Bomb !!
70. Granted an interview to the American Association of Retired Persons magazine to promote his Sinatra album.
71. Was once almost – almost – the new King of Comedy.
72. Rode in a Chrysler 200 (and an old elevator) in a Super Bowl commercial.
73. Talked back to Watson in an IBM commercial.
74. Managed to once rhyme “Delacroix” with “employed.”
75. Managed to mix Allen Ginsberg with Bill Haley’s Comets on The Basement Tapes.
76. Put John F. Kennedy, among many others, at the top of the Billboard charts in 2020 with “Murder Most Foul”.
77. Shortly thereafter, Bob sold his entire song catalog of over 600 titles to the Universal Music Publishing Group.
78. …and it only earned him $400,000,000.00
79. Remember, ’way back in 1967, the man realized “I’m Your Teenage Prayer” (also on those Basement Tapes), but…
80. He’s younger than that now.