THE DYLAN REVIEW: BREAKING NEW GROUND IN BOB DYLAN STUDIES

Hard on the heels of the international Bob Dylan conference held in Tulsa (Oklahoma) in May/June 2019 (see post on this blog, 9 June 2019), and in parallel with the development of the Dylan archive, also in Tulsa, there now arrives a brand-new journal, the Dylan Review. This publication (online only and free of charge) aims to fill a significant gap in Dylan studies, its rationale being ‘to provide a forum for rigorous intellectual exploration of Bob Dylan’s art’. While Dylan fanzines of high quality levels are not lacking, a fanzine is not an academic journal, and in the post-Nobel Dylan environment such a journal was needed more than ever. Under its co-editors Raphael Falco (University of Maryland) and Lisa Sanders (Saint Peter’s University, NJ), and with an editorial board including among others Nina Goss of Fordham University, NY and Richard Thomas, professor of classics at Harvard, the Dylan Review is now posed to occupy a key role at the academic end of Dylan studies. It will publish critical articles, interviews and book, film and exhibition reviews and will come out twice a year.

 

The first issue (1.1, Summer 2019), now online, comes across as well-produced, professional, and infused with both the requisite intellectual rigour and the enthusiasm of true Dylan devotees. Among the articles, there are two contrasting takes on the latest Bootleg Series offering, the ‘Blood on the Tracks’ outtakes ‘More Blood, More Tracks’: Jonathan Hodgers’ technical-musicological perspective marks an approach rarely found, while Richard Thomas’s blow-by-blow account of the lyrics’ evolution is an invaluable reference. Lisa Sanders offers a fascinating account of the ‘Mondo Scripto’ lyrics and drawings exhibition in London, Nick Smart ably reviews a new book by Daryl Sanders on the making of ‘Blonde and Blonde’, and Joan Osborne, recent coverer of Dylan songs, is the subject of a lucid interview.

The journal’s site is at: https://www.dylanreview.org/

and the current issue can be downloaded as a .pdf at: https://www.dylanreview.org/contents

This first number fulfils its promise and looks indeed set to fill that academic gap: further issues will be eagerly awaited!

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