Summer books 2: ‘Pledging My Time’
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
6M ago
I don’t imagine I’m alone in sometimes glancing at a stack of books about (or by) Bob Dylan and thinking, OK, that’s enough now. The last two new volumes, bought hot off the press in the past couple of years, turned out to be expensive time-wasters, prompting the thought that maybe I’d be better off re-reading some of the old ones. Anthony Scaduto’s early biography, maybe, or Suze Rotolo’s memoir, or The Nightingale’s Code. Or even the one Patrick Humphries and the late John Bauldie published in 1990, called Oh No! Not Another Bob Dylan Book. But there’s always an exception, and one such is P ..read more
Visit website
Songs of the Balkans
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
10M ago
Its appeal somewhere between those of Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares, a leftfield favourite in the 1980s, and the collaboration between the saxophonist Jan Garbarek and the singers of the Hilliard Ensemble in the 1990s, Medna Roso is an album taken from a concert in a Cologne church in 2021 by PJEV, a quintet of female singers specialising in the traditional songs of Serbia, Kosovo, Croatia and Bosnia, with the alto saxophonist Hayden Chisholm and the organist Kit Downes. Chisholm left his native New Zealand in the ’90s to explore the world of music: jazz at a conservatory in Cologne, Carnatic ..read more
Visit website
The blues came down from Richmond
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
Around the corner from where I live is an apartment that was once a crash-pad for Paul Simon, Jackson C. Frank and John Martyn. If I carry on to the train station, I pass the building where the Rolling Stones played the early gigs that attracted the attention of Andrew Loog Oldham and the four Beatles. On the way I see another building, now a Nando’s, where Eric Clapton and his fellow art students would while away an afternoon over a single cup of coffee. A couple of doors above it is the site of a clothes shop that was once vital to the Mod culture. I walk on past an independent book shop wh ..read more
Visit website
Dylan 1980-85
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
While reading an interview with the filmmaker Jesse Dylan in the (London) Times last week, one quote caught my eye. The interviewer asked him about the continued productivity of his father, who is now in his ninth decade. Jesse replied that his dad wasn’t trying to outdo himself. “He’s just thinking, ‘Should I paint a picture today? Should I write a song?'” It reminded me of of my own reaction to visiting the Musée Picasso in Paris a few years ago and realising how wonderful it must have been to be him, to get up in the morning and think, “Shall I paint a picture today? Shall I paint a few pl ..read more
Visit website
Bob Dylan in Surbiton
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
Here’s a building that deserves one of English Heritage’s blue plaques — if, that is, the story about Bob Dylan putting in an appearance at Surbiton Assembly Rooms in the first week of January 1963 can ever be verified. Mentioned 25 years ago in Clinton Heylin’s Bob Dylan: A Life in Stolen Moments (Day by Day 1941-1995), the alleged performance also gets a brief reference in a new book, Bob Dylan in London: Troubadour Tales, by Jackie Lees and K. G. Miles, an account of the singer’s various engagements with the British capital, from that first visit in the winter of 1962-63, when he appeared ..read more
Visit website
Music from a Welsh chapel
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
Toby Hay and David Ian Roberts are Welsh guitarists who occasionally play together. They’ve just released three tracks recorded in the Capel Y Graig, a deconsecrated chapel in Ceredigion now used as an art space, on Bandcamp. I think they’re marvellous. I know Toby Hay’s work from a fine 2018 album called The Longest Day, and from the series of morning and evening guitar pieces he recorded and filmed outdoors and put on YouTube in the first week of April (search @tobyhaymusic). He’s the right-handed player on the right of the photograph. His work reminds me a little bit of what the late Sandy ..read more
Visit website
Freedom songs
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
The huge white chapel of HM Prison Wormwood Scrubs is cocooned in 20ft mesh fences topped with rolls of razor wire. Built along with the rest of the establishment in 1874, it is Grade II listed and, on the inside, very handsome. Last night it hosted a unique occasion: a concert at which Rhiannon Giddens and her partner Francesco Turrisi, the star attractions, were preceded by six men currently held in the facility, which is nowadays a place for about 1,200 held on remand from local and county courts, awaiting the next stage of their judicial procedure. The project was organised by Koestler Ar ..read more
Visit website
Bill Frisell at Cadogan Hall
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
“If somebody makes a so-called mistake,” Bill Frisell says near the end of the promotional film for his new album, “that can be the most beautiful thing that happens all night, if everybody’s open to what that sound is and embraces it and makes it sound good. If everyone’s watching out for each other and everyone feels like they can take a risk, it gives the music a chance to keep going and evolving.” Last night at Cadogan Hall it was his turn to flub an ending, the mistake quickly finessed by his three colleagues — the singer Petra Haden, the cellist Hank Roberts and the bass guitarist Luke ..read more
Visit website
Bob & Lily revisited
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
It took me several weeks to overcome a disinclination to buy the Bootleg Series version of Blood on the Tracks. I’d been invited to a playback session last summer, hosted by Jeff Rosen, Dylan’s manager, and I wasn’t keen on what I heard. Of course the series as a whole represents a priceless example of a great artist permitting access to his own archives, but Blood on the Tracks is a perfect album and I don’t really need it in any other less perfect form. “You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go”, for example, is so precious to me that I really hated listening to a truly horrible early vers ..read more
Visit website
Bob Dylan in his own write
The Blue Moment » Folk music
by Richard Williams
2y ago
I chuckled when I saw these bookshelves, installed on the stairwell of the Halcyon Gallery on Bond Street, accompanying an exhibition called Mondo Scripto: Lyrics and Drawings by Bob Dylan. Here is what appears to be just about every book ever written in English about Dylan, including my own extremely modest and inessential effort. The realisation of how many of these volumes are on my shelves made me pause for a moment to think about life’s priorities. Anyway, the exhibition’s raison d’être is a new series of 52 handwritten lyrics, each framed with an accompanying pencil drawing. I happen to ..read more
Visit website

Follow The Blue Moment » Folk music on FeedSpot

Continue with Google
Continue with Apple
OR