Happy Birthday, Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan
Allen Ginsberg and Bob Dylan
Source: en.wikipedia.org –  1975 –  Author: Elsa Dorfman

Bob Dylan (born on 24 May 1941), one of the most influential singer-songwriters of the 20th century, turns 79 today.
As well as a singer, he is a painter, sculptor, the author of two book, and 2016 Nobel Prize winner

When Robert Allen Zimmerman, from Hibbing, Minnesota, enrolled at the University of Minnesota, in 1959, he had been calling himself Bob Dillon for some time, claiming that it was his mother’s maiden name, which was actually Stone, or that he had an uncle with a similar name. He also said that there was a Dillon Road in his hometown of Hibbing, and that he took it from the name of a town in Oklahoma — home state of Woody Guthrie.
Later, another theory posited that his pseudonym grew out of an early appreciation for the Matt Dillon character in the TV iconic western series Gunsmoke, or footballer Bobby Dan Dillon, even though there is no evidence that he was especially interested in football.

While he was living at Sigma Alpha Mu house, he began to perform at a coffeehouse a few blocks from campus introducing himself as “Bob Dylan” and in 1962, while in New York, he legally changed his name to Dylan.

The reason why Zimmerman chose the name Dylan has long puzzled his biographers and  the most commonly accepted version is that it was a tribute to Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, who had been a patron of the White Horse Tavern in Greenwich Village where Bob Dylan was a known performer.
The White Horse is the place where, on 3 November 1953 Dylan Thomas drank so heavily that, on returning to the Hotel Chelsea, he had to declare, “I’ve had eighteen  straight whiskies. I think that’s the record!”. After that he became ill, and died a few days later of unrelated causes.

Dylan himself has always been vague and enigmatic on the name issue, he only explained in a 2004 interview,You’re born, you know, the wrong names, wrong parents. I mean, that happens. You call yourself what you want to call yourself. This is the land of the free.”




59 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Bob Dylan

  1. Per il mio compleanno, una persona a me molto cara, mi regalò un suo concerto!
    Una sorpresa meravigliosa, mi sento fortunata! 🌹
    Bel post! 🙂🙂🙂 È inimitabile!
    Buona giornata!!!! ☺️


  2. Un anniversario che condivido con molto piacere non sono Per l’artista che è diventato bottiglia Ma perché anche nel lontano 1972 a cura della Newton Compton uscì un’edizione unica, come recita il titolo

    Il cui autore è mio fratello piu grande.

    Happy Birthday to Bob!!!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. As usual, Luisa, you do have so many interesting stories for us. I am in danger getting educated here.
    Although I know more about Dylan Thomas I always accepted on Dylan as his given name.
    It would be intriguing if the two artists were connected through two arts.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. A less enthusiastic comment, for which I apologize first:
    Bob Dylan May have changed his name because Zimmerman was a clearly Jewish last name.
    Bob Dylan rose to fame because he introduced those poetic songs just at the right time, he was in fact made famous because he went to Berkley(not as a student), during the famous protests of the late 60s. A former boss of mine was there in those years and told me the story.
    Bob Dylan never had a good voice to sing, but we loved him anyway.
    However, when he was awarded the Nobel prize he didn’t acknowledge it, until the very last moment when the committee was ready to withdraw it.
    Finally he went to Stockholm to receive it, and requested that no press, nor photographers be allowed. This is a big insult to photographers, and very for an artist who should know how important such an opportunity could be for freelancers.

    Now, all this compared with our Dario Fò behavior when he won the Nobel prize makes Bob go pretty low on the scale. If then we add the Dario gave the money the the city of Milan, makes Bob drop even lower.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I mean, I did like him too, just like everybody else, but we must admit that he was a lucky one! Then he might have grown into a grumpy old man. It happens to the best of men! 😉
        BTW; years ago my teenager son told me: “ Hi mom, but did you know that Jakob Dylan’s father was a musician??????”

        One of those things that makes you feel old immediately!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Io spevo solo del riferimento al poeta Dylan Thomas. Lessi una breve biografia, ma era un articolo che ometteva molte cose. Diceva solo “in onore del poeta Dylan Thomas”. L’articolo raccontava che da ragazzo Bob Dylan ( o Zimerman ) aveva attraversato in autostop mezza america per andare a trovare, da ammiratore, Woody Guthrie. Mi piace molto Bob Dylan, la prima che imparai delle sue canzoni, Blowin’ in the wind. Poi altre, anche lunghe, come “a hard rain ‘s gonna fall”, conoscevo il testo a memoria. Ma anche “it ain’t me baby”, “forever young” (a momenti, e’ piu’ famosa la versione di joan baez della sua), “Mr Tambourine Man” e alcune altre. Di Blowin’ in the wind avrebbe dichiarato , lo disse un conduttore televisivo: “ho scritto questa canzone in dieci minuti, e non mi e’ mia piaciuta molto..”. “Eppure è la piu’ conosciuta”, soggiunse il conduttore. Ciao 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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