80s Dylan

The 1980s were almost certainly Bob Dylan’s least fruitful decade artistically, but the cult of Dylan is such that you’ll find apologists for every album in his discography. Count producers Jesse Lauter (Elvis Perkins, The Low Anthem) and Sean O’Brien (Dawes, PAPA) among the key witnesses for Dylan’s dark decade; they’ve assembled a compilation called Bob Dylan In The 80s: Volume One that aims to “shed new light on a large cache of Bob Dylan songs that have long gone ignored,” specifically the period ranging from 1980′s Saved to 1990′s Under The Red Sky. The duo rounded up some formidable talents to make their case; the comp includes contributions from Built To Spill, Aaron Freeman of Ween & Slash, Glen Hansard, Reggie Watts, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, Lucius, Langhorne Slim, Craig Finn Of The Hold Steady, Deer Tick, Dawn Landes, Blitzen Trapper, Carl Broemel Of My Morning Jacket, Elvis Perkins and more.

Today we present Aaron Freeman (aka Gene Ween) and Slash’s take on Under The Red Sky opener “Wiggle Wiggle,” among the most-maligned songs in Dylan’s oeuvre. Freeman and Slash have turned the tune into a screeching, burping, electrified blues romp that might actually accomplish its goal of redeeming this song. (Incidentally, Slash played acoustic guitar on the original version.) Check it out below.

Bob Dylan In The 80s: Volume One is out 3/25 via ATO. Get more info on the comp here, and just for kicks, here’s Built To Spill’s previously released “Jokerman” cover too.

Comments (3)
  1. “The 1980s were almost certainly Bob Dylan’s least fruitful decade artistically, but the cult of Dylan is such that you’ll find apologists for every album in his discography.”

    Um, you do realize that, at least according to Stereogum, the GREATEST Bob Dylan song actually comes from this period: Every Grain of Sand. I guess this just means that Stereogum are Dylan apologists…I can live with that.

    • You, Mr. Peck, are a fool. From the same (also my favorite Dylan) album where you will find “Every Grain of Sand” is another song… “Property of Jesus” :

      When the whip that’s keeping you in line doesn’t make him jump
      Say he’s hard-of-hearing, say that he’s a chump
      Say he’s out of step with reality as you try to test his nerve
      Because he doesn’t pay tribute to the king that you serve.

      He’s the property of Jesus
      Resent him to the bone
      You got something better
      You’ve got a heart of stone.

      APOLOGIST? NO WAY.

  2. Wiggle Wiggle by Aaron Freeman & Slash fuckin’ rocks!!!!

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