Is It Rolling, Bob? Talking Dylan
16. Billy Bragg

16. Billy Bragg

April 21, 2019

In a specially extended edition, beloved Barking bigmouth Billy Bragg tells Kerry and Luke how he first encountered the works of Dylan in the early 1970’s, “through the portal” of Simon & Garfunkel and Rod Stewart. “Greatest Hits, Volume 2 really messed with my head and my songwriting”.

We learn that when Chrissie Hynde asks him to come backstage to meet Bob post-concert, Billy flees into the night, terrified of disgracing himself in front of his hero. Wiggle Wiggle, Woody Guthrie and Wilco also loom large in our landmark sixteenth podcast.

Billy Bragg writes and sings bitingly intelligent, warmly humane songs about politics and love. His albums include Shine A Light, Tooth & Nail, Bridges Not Walls and Mermaid Avenue – The Complete Sessions. His books include Roots, Radicals and Rockers: How Skiffle Changed the World. His recent documentary is Rock Island Line: The Song That Made Britain Rock. In 2019, he’ll be touring both the UK and USA.

Twitter @billybragg

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Recorded 20th March 2019

 

15. Jude Rogers

15. Jude Rogers

April 7, 2019

Jude Rogers, Guardian music critic and interviewer, shares her thoughts with Kerry while Luke is in rehearsals. She tells of growing up with The Smiths and REM, “terrified” of the “intimidating” man who “influenced all of pop music” until she discovers the “non-intimidating” Bob on Nashville Skyline and Self Portrait.
 
Jude eventually realises that “Bob Dylan was all these different people” and begins to see the light. An interview she conducts with Mavis Staples seals the deal, complimented by a Dylan playlist from a trusted friend.

Jude Rogers was reviews editor for The Word magazine. In addition to The Guardian, she writes for The Observer, The New Statesman, The Times and Financial Times as well as Red, Elle and Marie Claire. Jude broadcasts on BBC Radio and is a senior lecturer in journalism at London Metropolitan University.

Twitter @juderogers

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Recorded 7th November 2018

14. Jeff Slate

14. Jeff Slate

March 24, 2019

Direct from New York City, our first transatlantic podcast features singer, songwriter and journalist Jeff Slate, who went from life in a small town in suburban Connecticut to gigging with his own band to being invited into the Dylan office “for coffee” to writing the liner notes for More Blood, More Tracks.

Jeff spills the beans on future Bootleg Series releases and the music business in general: “physical product, sadly, is dead”. On hearing a preview of Shadows In The Night, he says “I was sitting there with my mouth open … at the passion, power and energy. Bob was singing his ass off!”

Jeff also wrote the liner notes for the reissue of Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and is the co-author of The Authorized Roy Orbison. He has appeared on radio and TV around the world as performer and music expert. He has an unrivalled knowledge of all things Dylan, Beatles and Monty Python.  

Twitter @jeffslate

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Recorded 15th February 2019

13. Robin Guise

13. Robin Guise

March 10, 2019

Film producer Robin Guise is our knowledgeable guide through Dylan’s major cinematic works. In our longest episode yet, we look back at Dont Look Back, Eat The Document, Pat Garrett And Billy The Kid, Renaldo & Clara, Hearts Of Fire and Masked And Anonymous. On the way, Robin discusses Let It Be, the Radiohead documentary Meeting People Is Easy and the upcoming Rolling Thunder project.
 
Acting is discussed: Tom Waits and Kris Kristofferson can; Bob Dylan can’t. Or can he? Fasten your seatbelts for a bumpy, amusing and contentious episode.
 
At our podcasting home, LipSync Post, Robin has spent 30 years overseeing marketing materials for major studio and independent films. He is the author of the entertaining online blog The Hitchcock Project. Robin has produced and directed many documentary films, including a recent short feature about rock photographer Jill Furmanovsky.

Twitter @ColBlimp9

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Recorded 4th January 2019

12. Kathryn Williams

12. Kathryn Williams

February 24, 2019

Kathryn Williams, singer-songwriter, laughs like the flowers as she talks about Dylan as inspiration and Cat Stevens as her secret crush. Outsiders and identity are themes; she listened to Janis Joplin every morning to get through school.

Kath confesses to some ”wild” teenage years: listening for hours to tapes of Dylan in a Liverpool pub car park. Lay Lady Lay was “a wakening into the adult world”, her “massive daily song: saucy and sexy”. Her songwriting is illuminated: “how to make truth ring”.

Kathryn Williams has released 14 studio albums. She has written and arranged for a multitude of artists and was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize for her second album, Little Black Numbers. She has collaborated with artists including John Martyn, Chris Difford, Thea Gilmore, Ed Harcourt and The Magic Numbers.

Website: www.kathrynwilliams.co.uk

Box set: https://kathrynwilliams1.bandcamp.com/

Twitter: @kathwilliamsuk

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Recorded 22nd October 2018

11. David Baddiel

11. David Baddiel

February 10, 2019

David Baddiel, a Bowie man to his core, pronounces Dylan “incredibly subversive and instinctively funny” while comparing him to Larry David. Bob’s voice is “like a buzzing fly”; Mr Tambourine Man is “a pure piece of surrealistic poetry that signals the start of the 60’s - in 1964”.
 
There’s more: “Dylan takes leaps of the imagination that he doesn’t know he’s taking” and “Bob is John The Baptist to Leonard Cohen’s Jesus”. Don’t miss this outstanding episode.
 
David - comedian, novelist and screenwriter - is well known for his partnerships with Rob Newman (the first stand-ups to play Wembley Arena) and Frank Skinner - Fantasy Football League and the Unplanned TV and stage shows. His solo shows FAME: Not The Musical and My Family: Not The Sitcom both transferred to the West End.
 
Podcast: Stalking Time For The Moonboys
 
Twitter @Baddiel

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Recorded 1st February 2019

10. Peter Fincham

10. Peter Fincham

January 27, 2019

Peter Fincham, television producer, tells a hilarious story concerning Dylan’s manager and a Bob tribute band. He moves on to Every Grain Of Sand and the Bootleg Series (“Angelina is impenetrable” but it’s “a magnificent vocal performance. He sings it as if his life depends on it”).

At boarding school, Peter rejected his peers’ predilection for Deep Purple and found a taste for “songs with acoustic guitars”. Dylan’s trip into the Sinatra songbook is considered, plus missing tracks from Shot of Love and Infidels, before we move on to Blonde On Blonde and other major works.

Peter Fincham was Managing Director of Talkback Productions, Controller of BBC1 and Director of Television for ITV. He developed programmes including The Day Today, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, I’m Alan Partridge, Da Ali G Show, Green Wing, The One Show, Downton Abbey, Broadchurch and The Only Way Is Essex.

(Apology to Bella Weiland, our engineer for this episode: I mispronounced her surname and didn't have a chance to correct it. It's pronounced WAYland, not WEEland...) - LH

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Episode recorded 12th October 2018

9. Tom Sutcliffe

9. Tom Sutcliffe

January 13, 2019

Tom Sutcliffe, journalist and broadcaster, gave his fourteen year-old son a birthday iPod with a quote from Forever Young engraved on it. He swears: “I don’t randomly quote Bob Dylan” and describes Bob’s Bringing It All Back Home as “a cold shower/warm shower of an album”.

Concentrating on BIABH, Tom calls Maggie’s Farm “an ordeal” and certain famous lyrics “trite” and “twee”; and admits to an irrational hatred of the tambourine, but praises Gates of Eden as “a great tune”.

Tom Sutcliffe studied at Cambridge and joined the BBC soon afterwards. He has presented Radio 4’s weekly Saturday Review arts programme since 1999. He was the first arts editor of The Independent newspaper and has been chairman of Round Britain Quiz since 2007.

Saturday Review web page http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/arts/saturdayreview.shtml

Twitter @tds153

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Episode recorded 3rd October 2018

8. Jon Canter

8. Jon Canter

December 30, 2018

Jon Canter, comedy writer, reminds us of Bob’s physical resemblance to The Marx Brothers and of his “predictably perverse” humour (“I don’t think I’d heard sarcasm in popular song before Dylan”). He goes on to equate Bob’s Jewishness with his constant restlessness, whilst quoting a Randy Newman song about Bruce Springsteen.
 
Jon somehow manages to relate the work of Dylan to Brexit, via a discussion of Bob’s attitude to “experts”. He praises the genius of Dylan’s early bootlegs and marvels at the man’s extraordinary emotional range (“He’s a Shakespearean songwriter”).
 
Jon Canter is the author of three comic novels - Seeds of Greatness, A Short Gentleman and Worth. He has written stand-up comedy for Lenny Henry, the BBC2 series Posh Nosh for Arabella Weir, comment pieces for The Guardian, along with many radio and stage plays. The fourth series of his comedy ‘Believe It’ (with Richard Wilson) was broadcast recently on BBC Radio 4.
 
Twitter: @joncanter3

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Episode recorded 20th September 2018

7. Sid Griffin

7. Sid Griffin

December 16, 2018

Sid Griffin, musician and writer, compares Dylan to Miles Davis but concludes “he’s a surprisingly normal person in an incredibly abnormal situation.” Other subjects: Bob’s open attendance at Minnesota sporting events, Dylan’s penchant for taking buses into rural Ireland and the secret of his 1960s skinny black jeans.
 
We also discuss originality. Sid’s view: “If you take two lines from a Henry Timrod poem in the American Civil war and then have a line of your own and then you have two lines from some Japanese poet of the 19th Century and a line of your own and then a line of dialogue that Humphrey Bogart said to Claude Rains…that is an original song.”
 
Kentucky native Sid Griffin is a successful solo artist as well as co-founder of the legendary bands The Long Ryders and The Coal Porters. His first book was a biography of Gram Parsons. Million Dollar Bash: Bob Dylan, The Band and The Basement Tapes is a must-read for any Dylan fan. Sid has contributed many articles to Mojo, Q and NME. He is often seen on BBC TV.
 
Website www.sidgriffin.com

Podcast  The Sid Griffin Podcast (https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/call-all-coal-porters/id558495037)

Twitter: @SidCPsGriffin

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Episode recorded 1st October 2018