50 episodes

Actors Kerry Shale and Lucas Hare talk to interesting people about Bob Dylan. Proud part of Pantheon - the podcast network for music lovers.

Is It Rolling, Bob? Talking Dyla‪n‬ Lucas Hare, Kerry Shale

    • Music Commentary
    • 5.0 • 8 Ratings

Actors Kerry Shale and Lucas Hare talk to interesting people about Bob Dylan. Proud part of Pantheon - the podcast network for music lovers.

    Tom Jackson

    Tom Jackson

    To mark our 50th episode, writer and podcaster Tom Jackson gives us his clear-eyed take on Dylan’s “Born Again” albums: Slow Train Coming, Saved, Shot Of Love and Trouble No More. “Slow Train Coming is not a smooth record, not a pleasant record, but I enjoy the tension.” And the accompanying live performances? “They were church services, really. But why is Dylan so angry? That terrible, clear-eyed vitriol. He’s got the answer but he’s still furious! I think he enjoyed baiting his audience, messing with people’s minds”. In a 50th outing overflowing with colourful opinions, Tom brings it all back home: “Dylan does nothing straight. I imagine when he puts his Ocado delivery in, there’ll be a note or a poem in it! His older persona, the grizzled storyteller full of wisdom and foolishness, is so appealing”.
    Tom has collected postcards for as long as he can remember. He is the author of Postcard From The Past, 4th Estate (‘A book of rare and genuine beauty’ James O’Brien). He has written about postcards for The Guardian, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Big Issue and talked about them on Radio 3, Radio 4, Radio 5, Talk Radio, BBC local stations and Monocle 24. He has produced documentaries for Radio 4 including Postcards From The White City. The Postcard From The Past book started life as Twitter account @pastpostcard, which attracts over 13 million impressions a month. He hosts Podcast From The Past, (“Fascinating, funny, poignant" BBC Radio 4Extra) in which he chats to well-known guests about postcards and their lives.
    Kerry and Luke were guests in 2020:
    https://open.spotify.com/episode/140u29iBMah5g5VfCBpP9m?si=kBgBP2JxQeenE4ILmy5Hmw
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    Recorded 22nd January 2021
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    • 51 min
    John Niven

    John Niven

    Novelist, former A & R man and screenwriter John Niven begins by summing up Bob’s generally unloved Neighbourhood Bully: “I have a soft spot for Heritage Rock acts trying to do Punk in the late 70’s and early 80’s” before summing up the Dont Look Back days: “When you’re in your 20’s, you’re all about the cruelty”. His response to attending a New York screening of the rarely-seen Eat The Document? “An absolute pile of heroin-addled lunacy”.
    But Niven reveals immense respect for the man and his work: “Listening to Dylan is like reading James Joyce. Just dip in. It can take 20 or 30 years to see the whole picture”. The author of the must-read novella Music From Big Pink references all sorts of artists from John Updike to Joe Strummer, from Jez Butterworth to... Rolf Harris. As a bonus, he includes helpful advice on how to deal with awful Q & A sessions. A scorchingly entertaining episode - not for the faint of heart.
    John Niven was born in Irvine, Ayrshire. He graduated from the University Of Glasgow with first class honours and has written for The Times, The Independent, Word, Q, FHM and many other publications. His extraordinary novella Music From Big Pink explored the 60’s Woodstock scene from the point of view of The Band’s fictional drug dealer. John’s bestselling novels include Kill Your Friends, The Amateurs, The Second Coming, Cold Hands, Straight White Male, The Sunshine Cruise Company, Kill ‘Em All and his latest, The F*ck-It List. His screenplays include Kill Your Friends and How To Build A Girl.
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    Recorded 12th November 2020
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    • 53 min
    Edward Docx

    Edward Docx

    Edward Docx (novelist/screenwriter/journalist) is a hyper-articulate defence witness for some of Bob’s least understood albums: Street-Legal, Infidels, Empire Burlesque and Together Through Life. “There is no uninteresting Dylan album. He opens his veins and says "This is what it’s like for me now."” How passionate is Ed Docx about Bob Dylan? After recording the podcast, we continued our digital discussion for another hour.
    Here’s Ed on Street-Legal: “It’s his Bosworth. After the battle, there’s blood and corpses and death and everything’s gone wrong. But somehow, he picks himself up and starts to sing! I don’t think he ever dared go there again. It was so bleak.” His reaction to accidentally discovering I And I at age 14: “I thought: what great human being has written this down? I couldn’t believe the depth and strength and beauty and layered wonder.” Join us for our longest - and possibly most articulate – episode thus far.
    Edward Docx is half Russian on his mother’s side. He was born in the North East and grew up in the North West, went to school in Manchester and then on to Christ’s College, Cambridge, where he read English Literature. He started writing fiction when he was in his teens and completed three unpublished novels before The Calligrapher was published in 2003. His other novels are Self Help (longlisted for the Booker Prize/winner Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize), The Devil’s Garden and Let Go My Hand. He is associate editor of Prospect Magazine. His journalism appears in most leading European and American newspapers and magazines. In addition, Ed works extensively in television and radio and teaches on the Guardian’s Master Class series on fiction writing.
    The Prophet (November 16, 2011)
    Bob Almighty (April 21, 2016)
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    Recorded 5th October 2020
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    • 59 min
    Pamela Thurschwell

    Pamela Thurschwell

    Academic and author Pamela Thurschwell gives us her conflicted feminist take on Dylan, including his queer lyrical metaphors and what it’s like to be on the receiving end of a Dylan mansplaining session. Her namechecks range from Amy Rigby, Emma Swift and Joan Baez to Joyce Carol Oates, Annie Hall and Jane Eyre.
    Pam describes Dylan as “the dangerous guy who sees the world as it is”, but also “fragile”, “mean” and just plain “ornery”. “Why do I always go for the Dylan boys?”, she tells us, then gives in-depth excavations of It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue and Positively 4th Street (“it was great to hear someone so pissed off”). For a surprising discussion that encompasses male passive-aggression, gender relation complications and the mega-talent that is Joni Mitchell, don’t miss this groundbreaking episode.
    Pamela Thurschwell is Head of English Literature at the University of Sussex. Before working at Sussex, she worked at University College, London, and she studied at Cambridge and Cornell Universities. Pam has written books and articles on a wide variety of writers and artists including Dylan, George Eliot, Henry James, Sigmund Freud, Elvis Costello, Bruce Springsteen, Morrissey, Pete Townshend, Daniel Clowes, Henry James, Oscar Wilde, Carson McCullers, Willa Cather and Toni Morrison.
    American Tunes for Coronaviral Times: Bob Dylan, Paul Simon and John Prine (May 1, 2020)
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    Recorded 7th September 2020
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    • 48 min
    Daragh Carville

    Daragh Carville

    Screenwriter Daragh Carville (ITV’s The Bay) praises Dylan’s “extraordinary ear for spoken language” while reminding us that he “draws on cinema, is fascinated by storytelling but his own films don’t work at all”. All the great story-songs are explored, including Highlands (“I phoned people up, I was so excited!”), Dignity (“it never resolves but at the same time it’s perfectly satisfying”), The Lonesome Death Of Hattie Carroll, Brownsville Girl, Hurricane, Isis, Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream, The Ballad Of Hollis Brown, Clothes Line Saga, 4th Time Around and plenty more.
    Daragh particularly praises the 21st Century Dylan: “in the last twenty years, his persona is Humphrey Bogart crossed with a riverboat gambler” and enjoys his “obstinate personality. It’s like a marriage. You love the flaws, too”. Films are discussed (Shane, The Gunfighter), Dylan’s early contemporaries like Phil Ochs are considered, even video games are touched upon (Red Dead Redemption!). Join us there - when you feel good enough to go.
    Daragh Carville is a playwright and screenwriter from Armagh in Northern Ireland. He is a recipient of the Stewart Parker Award and the Meyer Whitworth Prize for playwriting. His first feature film, Middletown, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and his second, Cherrybomb, at the Berlin Film Festival. Plays include Language Roulette, Observatory, Family Plot, This Other City, The Life and Times of Mitchell and Kenyon and History. Daragh’s television work includes ITV’s The Bay (Series 2, 2021), Being Human, 6 Degrees and The Smoke. Radio plays: Regenerations - about a Doctor Who convention - and Dracula, starring Michael Fassbender. He teaches Scriptwriting at Birkbeck, University of London.
    The Bay
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    Recorded 10th August 2020
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    • 47 min
    Loudon Wainwright III

    Loudon Wainwright III

    Sitting on the porch of his Long Island lockdown hideaway, serenaded by a local bird, Loudon Wainwright III reminds us that he was proclaimed “the first of the new Bob Dylans”. It helped me get a record deal but then it got to be a pain in the ass”. He still has a “reservoir of respect, admiration and awe” for the man and his work. “I dream about Dylan a lot. He is on, in and under my mind: the Muhammad Ali of songwriters.”
    Loudon has seen Dylan in concert and been visited by him backstage after his own concerts. “I was headlining at Max’s Kansas City. He came with Doug Sahm. They were both wearing cowboy hats. Bob said, “I really like that ‘Dead Skunk’ song”. He has worked with everyone from producer Bob Johnston and Nashville cats Kenny Buttrey, Ron Cornelius and Hargus “Pig” Robbins to David Mansfield, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott and good buddy Christopher Guest (“he does a great Bob Dylan impression”). Despite his admiration, he stopped listening for many years after John Wesley Harding. “I was too threatened by his greatness”.
    Meet the man who happily called himself - along with Bruce Springsteen, John Prine and Steve Forbert - one of Bob Dylan’s “dumbass kid brothers”.
    After two previous nominations, singer/songwriter/actor Loudon Wainwright III won a Grammy for 2009’s High, Wide And Handsome: The Charlie Poole Project. His songs have been covered by Johnny Cash, Bonnie Raitt, Earl Scruggs, Mose Allison, Big Star, Norma Waterson and his son Rufus Wainwright. Loudon’s many albums include Attempted Mustache, Fame and Wealth, I’m Alright, Therapy, History, Grown Man, Little Ship, Last Man On Earth, So Damn Happy, Recovery, Strange Weirdos, Older Than My Old Man Now, Haven’t Got The Blues (Yet) and Years In The The Making. His latest album, backed by Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks, is I’d Rather Lead A Band.
    Loudon’s film acting credits include Knocked Up (for which he also wrote the soundtrack), The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Scorsese’s The Aviator. TV acting credits include a recurring role in M*A*S*H, as well as his Netflix Special Surviving Twin.
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    Recorded 8th July 2020
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    • 39 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
8 Ratings

8 Ratings

JR Hex ,

Edward Docx

Edward nails Street Legal. His is the best encapsulation of why it’s probably the greatest Dylan album. For me it’s the other side of the coin to Astral Weeks but from the same place, one of complete surrender. For Morrison it was spiritual but for Dylan it was earthly - he’s down in the reeds without any oxygen while Van is counting stars - but in both we find transcendence. Thanks Edward!

Calexico65 ,

Not Dark Yet

An altogether marvellous Dylan podcast. Among the best podcasts I subscribe to. In the wrong hands (eg gushing American presenters) this could be very tiresome but Lucas and Kerry have perfect broadcasting voices. Restrained yet engaged and willing to let the guest expand and meander the various Dylan avenues. The calibre of guest is wonderful too. Definitely a winner each week and always listened to as soon as possible. Not a lingerer in the pod queue. Together through life.

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