Bob Dylan’s eponymous debut album was released 51 years ago today. A homage to the blues of the early 20th century, in particular his hero, folk legend, Woodie Guthrie. The album’s most famous track is arguable House of the Risin’ Sun, later covered by The Byrds in 1964, making it one of the first true folk-rock songs, and a classic British Invasion record. Have a listen to this album, it is a great way to understand the musical heritage that shaped Bob Dylan, and what led him to write some of the greatest modern music ever written.
‘Afghan Girl’ by Steve McCurry, 1984.
I had never seen this photo until today, but found it so incredibly moving. It was taken in 1984 by the photographer Steve McCurry on assignment for National Geographic. The girl in the photo, found out to be Sharbat Gula in 2002, was 12 years old at the time, and living in the Nasir Bagh refugee camp in Pakistan. Her home in Afghanistan had been destroyed during the Russian invasion.
Such a beautiful photograph, and a reminder of how powerful they can be.
The other day my dad and I were listening to The Rolling Stones. I think you’re initially either a fan of the Stones or the Beatles based upon who your dad was a fan of. In my case its always been the Stones. Anyway, we ended up discussing (read: me having a rant) about how crap popular music these days. I read a few months ago that about 70% of songs in the top 40 are about drinking, the ‘clurrb’, partying, partying in the clurrb, drinking in the clurrb, partying AND drinking in the clurrb etc etc etc. It’s hardly stuff to make Ivor Novello proud. So I’m posting this, Not Fade Away by The Rolling Stones, it was a cover of a Buddy Holly song, released on the first album in 1964. The song is under 2 minutes long, but it’s one of the Stones’ most classic tunes. It’s what a pop song should be all about, punchy, catchy as hell and not once does it mention the clurrb. Yes Will. I. Am. I’m talking to you.
Master of Puppets, acclaimed as one of the greatest, if not the greatest metal album of all time marks its 27th birthday today. An inspiration for countless artists, here’s the title track for you. Performed in Seattle during the Damaged Justice tour of 1989, widely regarded as Metallica’s greatest live performance. Enjoy!