What’s not to like about a 4-CD 76-song tribute to Bob Dylan and Amnesty International for $20
Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan is a lot of Bob Dylan songs for only $20 sung by artists famous and not-so-famous. The project will raise money for Amnesty International.
Amnesty International are fighting for human rights and freedom around the world. They deserve our $20 and more for defending people from oppression.
It’s the 50th Anniversary of Amnesty International, Bob Dylan’s 50th anniversary of recording. The project seems like a winner.
People who don’t like Dylan as a singer will no doubt enjoy these covers. Taste being personal, I am loathe to admit as a big Bob Dylan fan there isn’t much for me here.
However with 76 songs at 26 cents per song, you’ll no doubt find lots to like and put into rotation.
Bob Dylan still has a lot of draw power. Amazon lists Chimes of Freedom as # 4 in music CDs and #41 in downloads. The album is #38 on iTunes. Bob Dylan ‘Freedom’ tribute album debuts at No. 11 — and No. 39 LA Times
Dylan is to the go-to songwriter for 60s style protest and freedom songs. Blowin in the Wind wasn’t the first folk protest song but it was the most famous. As soon as Dylan became the demi-god of protest singers, he abandoned the genre for rock and roll and personal material. He has remained a quixotic songwriter if not a protest singer since then.
With more than 500 songs in his songbook, it’s not hard to find 76 great Bob Dylan songs. The selections here range across the 60′s, 70s and 80s with some interesting and rare choices like Abandoned Love, Property of Jesus, and Johnny Cash’s version of One Too Many Mornings with the Avett Brothers singing along.
Most of the great Dylan songs for three decades are included. There is nothing from his last two decades which is odd.
But I can’t keep myself listening to it. Why? The performances just don’t click.
I have it on my computer, on my iPhone and play it through Bluetooth into my ears.
The performances are just not my taste. Some of them are clearly overwrought and others seem like toss off’s from the artist.
I am a Dylanophile with every record he made, videos, books, and sheet music. There is a section NJN Network dedicated to Dylan stories. I do like Dylan covers when they add something to the song.
Last week I was having dinner in a good restaurant. My dinner partner accused me of listening to music through Bluetooth in my hearing aids. Not me. That was a string of Bob Dylan covers on the house music system. It sounded great.
“Is that your new CD,” my partner asked.
We had been listening to Chimes of Freedom on the drive and she had panned it despite being a Dylan fan. “C’mon, give me a break. I have to listen to this to review it,” I pleaded
“Listen to it on your Bluetooth,” she replied in the car.
At first I thought the restaurant was playing Chimes of Freedom. Three songs in a row and they sounded pretty good. Then I dialed up Don’t Think Twice on the iPhone from the Chimes of Freedom CD and the difference was night and day.
Here’s Keesha singing Don’t Think Twice from Chimes of Freedom.
The restaurant was playing Susan Tedeschi singing Don’t Think Twice in a much more listenable version.
The 4-CD set was produced by Rick Rubin who is one of those producers you love or not. Rubin is said to like sparse, stripped arrangements of songs. What do I know? He will probably win the Grammy for Chimes of Freedom.
No doubt time will endear this set to me.