Saturday, October 27, 2012

Everything You Need To Know About The Bob Dylan Discography: Fun Facts And Other Surprising Numbers

Cover of "Times They Are A-Changin"
Cover of Times They Are A-Changin
by Johnny Clark

As we all know, Bob Dylan is one of the greatest singer-songwriters of our time and has recorded a huge number of songs.

Most of us only know his major albums because the Bob Dylan discography is a big object that few master and that a newcomer wouldn't know how to handle. So let's dig into it and underline the key facts that come out of the list of the artist's albums.

1. First things first: Dylan has released throughout his career 35 studio albums - out of which 58 singles, 13(!) live albums and 15 compilation albums (aka "best of" albums). Add to these figures all the albums on which he appears by contributing with one or more songs, notably with the Travelling Wilburys, on The Last Waltz or on Folkways: A Vision Shared - A Tribute to Woody Guthrie & Leadbelly. And not to mention the countless bootlegs, tribute albums and soundtracks on which songs written and/or performed by Mr. Dylan appear.

2. B. Dylan is a productive artist. The longest period between 2 albums being the five years that separate Love And Theft (2001) from Modern Times (2006). He'd rather released an album every 1 or 2 year since his first production, the eponymous Bob Dylan, came out in 1962. And when it's not 2 albums released the same year, like he has done 6 times throughout his career: in 1964 (with The Times They Are a-Changin' and Another Side of Bob Dylan), 1965 (Bringing It All Back Home and Highway 61 Revisited), 1970 (Self Portrait and New Morning), 1973 (Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid and Dylan) and 1975 (Blood on the Tracks and The Basement Tapes) and 2009 (Together Through Life and Christmas in the Heart).

3. He has released his entire discography on one label, Columbia, except for the album Planet Waves, which came out on Asylum in 1974.

4. All of his albums where released in Vinyl except World Gone Wrong (1993) which came out in CD and cassette only. His first CD release was with Empire Burlesque back in 1985 and the last one to be issued in cassette was Time Out Of Mind, in 1997(!).

5. It is amazing how people have the ability to remember exactly what they were doing when a traumatic event happened such as the death of a personality or the beginning of a worldwide conflict. Well I recall what I was doing on September 11, 2001: I was on my way to get the newest Bob Dylan Album, Love and Theft, when I heard the news...

It seems pretty obvious that for Bob Dylan, music is a real work in progress and that he does the job. And the Bob Dylan Discography is a true object of study for all the singer-songwriter coming after him.

If you like Bob Dylan than you might also check out Frans Schuman. His first two albums are made of guitar and harmonica only tracks. Some are folk songs and some have a different feel. But I think you might like it.

Click here to download a copy of his latest single for free.

Cheers, Johnny Clark.

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