Friday, September 28, 2012

Songwriter Comments on the Bob Dylan Rolling Stone Interview

Bob Dylan at Massey Hall, Toronto, April 18, 1...
Bob Dylan at Massey Hall, Toronto, April 18, 1980 Photo by Jean-Luc Ourlin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
by Avi Colon and Christina Samuelson

If there's anyone who can comment on the recent Bob Dylan Rolling Stone interview, it's another songwriter.

The controversy over whether Bob Dylan clearly cited the sources of quotations used in his songs is just an attempt to distract listeners from the power of his new works.

Look, every artist has been borrowing from each other since the ancient times of the poets. You could even go as far as saying all ideas are borrowed from a higher source.

Thousands of artists from around the world are tuning into the same ideas, inspirations, and thoughts at the same time. It's what the artist then creates with that inspiration that gets our attention.

True artists understand that the process of creation is an organic one and that inspirations can come from many places, the key is to take that idea and do something unique with it. And if it's done right, it will be a future inspiration for all of us.

Appropriation in art is a well-known method practiced by many artists; it is the use of pre-existing images, words, materials and objects to create a new work. An artist may borrow from a variety of sources for example, advertising, mass media, Art History or everyday objects.

Appropriation questions the idea of originality in art and challenges the concepts of authorship and ownership. Imagine a recycling of ideas that continually rejuvenates our creative energies.

Bob Dylan is no different. If one is going to dissect his music and look at this scientifically, everything is inspired from some source. Keep the music machine rolling and let's focus on the heart of his creation and how well it was executed.

Let somebody else get it wrong. Bottom line: all artists borrow from each other. The critics who have quickly judged Bob Dylan's use of quotations from other artists in his recent album neglect to observe that great songwriters and bands like the Birds, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Crosby Stills and Nash, among many other musicians have used Bob Dylan's clever songwriting as inspiration for their own music.

How much can you squeeze out of a man and then negatively criticize him at the same time? It's no wonder he struck back harshly at the critics' attack of his creative process.

How many of these critics are songwriters themselves, let alone have been invited to the White House as one of the best songwriters of all time? The critics should take a chill pill and realize what's going on.

The Bob Dylan Rolling Stone interview shows us that critics are out of tune. As a singer-songwriter myself, I say, Bob, we're with you. May we all continue to inspire each other and make great music! Sparkling energy.

Speaking of awesome music: You can check out our hit new album from Boston, Love at First Sight.
Or click here for a free song download from the album, Love at First Sight!

Christina and Avi Colon signing off.

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