Self Portrait

4 out of 5

$36.99

SKU: B002MT3BE4 Category:

Description

Slapping together bizarre new songs, apparent parodies (as with Paul Simon’s The Boxer ) and Basement Tapes outtakes, this 1970 double-album seemed designed to confuse-yet it still hit #4! Versions of Like a Rolling Stone; The Mighty Quinn , and It Hurts Me Too join All the Tired Horses; Wigwam;…

Reviews

  1. Johnny Heering

    It’s not clear what Bob Dylan’s intentions were with this album. Was it a serious artistic statement? Was it a joke? Was it an attempt to beat the bootleggers? Was it a middle finger to the record company? Dylan has given some contradictory explanations for the album. Anyway, this album was universally panned when it came out. It has made it onto some “Worst Albums of All Time” lists over the years. More recently, it has been given some 5 star reviews by revisionists. But to me, the truth is somewhere in the middle. It is worse that any of the albums that Dylan put out before this, but it’s not a terrible album. There are covers of songs by the likes of The Everly Brothers, Gordon Lightfoot and Simon & Garfunkel. These are actually fairly entertaining. As for the new songs that Dylan wrote himself for the album, they aren’t as good as his “classic” songs, but they aren’t bad either. There was one single released from the album, the instrumental “Wigwam”, which became a minor hit. Whatever might be “wrong” with this album, it’s still an album that every Dylan fan must hear.

  2. Tom Furgas

    It’s not clear what Bob Dylan’s intentions were with this album. Was it a serious artistic statement? Was it a joke? Was it an attempt to beat the bootleggers? Was it a middle finger to the record company? Dylan has given some contradictory explanations for the album. Anyway, this album was universally panned when it came out. It has made it onto some “Worst Albums of All Time” lists over the years. More recently, it has been given some 5 star reviews by revisionists. But to me, the truth is somewhere in the middle. It is worse that any of the albums that Dylan put out before this, but it’s not a terrible album. There are covers of songs by the likes of The Everly Brothers, Gordon Lightfoot and Simon & Garfunkel. These are actually fairly entertaining. As for the new songs that Dylan wrote himself for the album, they aren’t as good as his “classic” songs, but they aren’t bad either. There was one single released from the album, the instrumental “Wigwam”, which became a minor hit. Whatever might be “wrong” with this album, it’s still an album that every Dylan fan must hear.

  3. Sue Rarick

    Critics roasted this album when it appeared in 1971. They were upset that Dylan had seemed to abandon their need for deeply introspective and highly learned philosophy and interpretation. Turned out Dylan was fed up with being expected to provide insights into the cosmic questions and philosophical reasonings of all mankind. That was never his intent. The critics had put him on that pedestal and he never felt comfortable there. So he tossed off this album (for good measure, a double LP) with covers, throwaways, and what-not. Well, I bought this gem in high school and it has always been a great favorite. Dylan having fun, letting his hair down, and the critics be damned! Good for him! For an added tweak, Dylan painted the cover portrait as fast as possible, tossing it off just as he did the music on the album. So there!As a PS, I’d like to mention that I recently bought a paperback copy of his book “Tarantula” (published about the same time as this album), which is full of stream-of-conciousness ravings and jottings. It does my heart glad to know that the man who wrote that book and recorded this album won a Nobel Prize, which he was “too busy” to go to Sweden to accept. Now, that’s style!

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