I like to think that my taste in music has broadened over the years and it is now what might be described as catholic (nothing to do with my religious upbringing). In my youth I would have scoffed at the idea of singing in a male voice choir. Now I listen to and enjoy, or at least appreciate, almost any form of good music.
My favourite radio program is ‘Late Junction’ on Radio Three. If you have never had the pleasure then try it out –either live, late at night on most week day evenings, or over the web at BBC – World music and listen to the last show at any time. They play such a wide variety of wonderful music that you might never hear anywhere else. If anything reflects my tastes in music that program does
But David, our beloved editor in chief, has asked me to write about ‘my favourite’ music or musician and I have agreed – I suppose we have a verbal contract and I have to deliver my side of the bargain. A Radio Program is a bit of a ‘cop out’ so here goes – a decision has been made
- He is a singer who can’t sing
- The range of his songs is often less than 4 tones between top and bottom note
- He plays basic guitar – 3 or 4 simple chords in any one song
When I first heard Bob Dylan I, like everyone of my age, was listening to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones et al. Who was this tuneless, whining American that people were talking about. His song ’Maggies Farm’ was seven minutes long when most singles were less than three minutes.
There was no conversion on the way to Damascus. I can’t pinpoint the moment when I began to appreciate Mr Dylan’s music. I even find it difficult to define what it is that I like about it. However his music has played a big part in my life as it has on so many others. Many have come and gone but Bob is still out there, still writing and still touring extensively after more than forty years.
About ten years ago I managed to get to see him for the first time at Sheffield Arena. I expected a shambling wreck and was quite prepared to be disappointed. I simply needed to see him in person before he or I died. He was fabulous and I, along with many others enjoyed a fantastic evening – a mixture of nostalgia and a feeling of being in the presence of someone quite special. All the old material was there but totally rearranged to give a freshness that was quite exhilarating
So there you have it. My favourite music is epitomised by a late night radio show on Radio Three and Old Bob Dylan