Expecting Rain
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Dylan's Education
http://www.expectingrain.com/discussions/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=73312
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Author:  jimb727 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:33 GMT ]
Post subject:  Dylan's Education

We all know our hero to be a brilliant lyricist, performer and lately even a quite capable writer. But where did this all come from. What do we really know about Dylan's formal education??
I think we can safely assume he graduated high school, though to take a ridiculous notion from a recent campaign(humorously) I've never seen a diploma!! :P
What do my fellow fans know about what Bob studied in his brief college career? If anything. He went to college a semester or two right?? At which university?? Minnesota?? I really don't know alot about what makes Dylan tick intellectually. Suze's "mentoring" played a part,...right?? How much a part?? Don't know alot about this area and thought it might make an interesting topic which I haven't seen discussed.

Author:  Troubadour64 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:41 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

i think Dylan's most formative educational years were on the streets of New York shortly after arrival, and in bed with Suzie the Communist. There was that older couple whose couch he slept on, whose records he listened to and whose home library he pillaged. I bet they had some fiery dinner time talks. Then of course there was the NYC public library.

but what he suggests in No Direction Home is that he spent a semester or two at most at the University of Minnesota (somebody knows exactly how long) and had a hard time interrupting his study of Life by going to class. my guess is he studied the elements of diddling on a guitar under a tree and performing for drinking university-heads in Coffee shops (if they existed back then) and pubs.

His high school English teacher has had a LOT to say about his interest in the subject matter and the complicated assignments he handed in. I don't know about the other subjects, but I'd guess he was of the art/english quadrant of high school cliques, not so much the jock type.

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:46 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Quite honestly, without the formal education and a four year earned degree, the record companies should have slammed the door on him and his like. Dylan was capable of earning the degree and we'd have still had his music in time. The upside to establishing a standard would be so much of the crap that passed for "music" would have been left on the table of coffee shops or the floors of garages and we'd all be better off.

Allowing just anybody who can play chord progressions, some fast-fingering solos, and write lyrics without a proper education has inundated record shops (and now iTunes) with too much of nothing. If these so-called artists couldn't hack the degree program and we never heard what they had to write, we'd be left with Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and the like.

It wouldn't be all that bad really...

Author:  John B. Stetson [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:49 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Though registered for classes at the University of MN, most evidence suggests he rarely-if almost never--attended. Self-educated after that--there's that chapter in his reliable Chronicles about all the books he read in the library room of the friends' apartment he was shacking up in for a while. Truly, though, just based on the references in his songs--seems like he was a voracious reader.

Author:  the_revelator [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:49 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

jimb, why can't you bother to read just one of the hundreds of bios that JP has discussed here in the book thread and many other places?

Bob famously had a band in high school. He seems to have made up his mind very early.


As for the brief college experience:

http://www.d.umn.edu/

Author:  Lily Rose [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:51 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

I think he is a very good example of the fact that a degree or lack of one is not a determination of actually ability or intelligence. As he put it in NDH..... "I was enrolled, but I didn't go to classes"..... so I don't think he seems to have any actually formal classroom time, with the exception of some short term classes he might have taken (the art teacher, maybe)....

but I think the biggest tell factor in his "education" is that in one of the Rolling Thunder books, there was a line from one of the roadies that he had lots of books with him..... a number of them with bookmarkers in them....... Then of course to be able to 'steal/beg/borrow' all the stuff he does from various other sources then his ability to cover lots of ground must be immense...... then there is the fact that I think he has one killer memory..... from the beginning when he said he could remember songs after hearing them a time or two..... to the stories that pop up about him noticing and remembering people he only saw briefly in passing.....

Also, his want to always know more..... it seems to be something he has not lost with age and at this point I think it is safe to assume he never will lose it..... and then lastly..... experience.... he seems willing to take it out on the limb over and over..... some things don't work, most seem to work for him..... and that willingness to just go for it is a big learning factor.

Author:  jimb727 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:52 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Yes, there are many factors to Dylan's education that weren't formal. I wonder about other great writers through the ages and how much of their abilities were gained through some form of formal education or , like Dylan's, through alot of "circumstances." Life circumstances you might say. I mean I know anyone, in any field really, gains and puts towards their life's work what they gain from life.

Author:  XXX [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 15:54 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

"Colleges are like old Folks Homes - only more people die in them"

Author:  jimb727 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 16:01 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

the_revelator wrote:
jimb, why can't you bother to read just one of the hundreds of bios that JP has discussed here in the book thread and many other places?

Bob famously had a band in high school. He seems to have made up his mind very early.


As for the brief college experience:

http://www.d.umn.edu/


You know what I think?? I think I was subconsciously missing JP and I formulated this hostility invoking thread to get a rise out of the 'ol gal!!and the rest of you saps

Either that or a seizure :mrgreen:

Author:  P. Pittsburgh Joe [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 16:23 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

I feel that musicians would be better off to stay in school & major in business administration. It might prevent them from signing the ridiculous one-sided contracts we read about where they sign away so many rights to their songs & deprive themselves of earnings. If the Beatles knew what they were signing, Michael Jackson wouldn't have ended up owning their songs.

Author:  jimb727 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 17:03 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

P. Pittsburgh Joe wrote:
I feel that musicians would be better off to stay in school & major in business administration. It might prevent them from signing the ridiculous one-sided contracts we read about where they sign away so many rights to their songs & deprive themselves of earnings. If the Beatles knew what they were signing, Michael Jackson wouldn't have ended up owning their songs.


Great point Joe. I was just talking about this very point this morning when I heard a commercial using the great song 'In My Life' I can't bear to watch it!!

The person I was talking to was shocked when I told him that it isn't the Beatles doing this. That they haven't owned their songs in decades. It's Jackson. Or his estate these days.

Are there still Allen Klein and Dick James types in the industry?? I'm sure. Though the industry has totally changed.

Author:  rolling_thunder [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 17:21 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Untrodden Path wrote:
Quite honestly, without the formal education and a four year earned degree, the record companies should have slammed the door on him and his like. Dylan was capable of earning the degree and we'd have still had his music in time. The upside to establishing a standard would be so much of the crap that passed for "music" would have been left on the table of coffee shops or the floors of garages and we'd all be better off.

Allowing just anybody who can play chord progressions, some fast-fingering solos, and write lyrics without a proper education has inundated record shops (and now iTunes) with too much of nothing. If these so-called artists couldn't hack the degree program and we never heard what they had to write, we'd be left with Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and the like.

It wouldn't be all that bad really...


I agree, we wouldn't have had a lot of the crap that has come out over the years. But to suggest that musicians need a formal education to make music is absurd. Music is a way for people to speak their minds who may have no other format. I doubt a lot of the punk rock bands had college educations, didn't make their stuff pointless, in fact a lot of it was pretty damn cool. I don't believe you have to attend college to be educated. If you seek out education and read and study things on your own time, you can learn just as much as anybody can in a class somewhere. I know a lot of people who have gone to college, while I have sat at home reading various books. I'm just as smart as them if not smarter

Author:  rolling_thunder [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 17:41 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Not saying I'm as smart as all my college educated friends, but some of 'em. I have a few artist friends who are significantly smarter than me, but it's alright because they teach me a lot of stuff all the time.

Author:  Troubadour64 [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 17:45 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

I think UP was intentionally taking an absurd position, RT. and you should feel absolutely comfortable with saying you are as smart as your college educated friends. you are less collegiately educated than them, perhaps, and that's it. i bet there are plenty of things you can do better than they can!

interesting about the idea of learning music theory though - i think dylan suggests for developing musicians and what 'he would do if he were to do it all over again' (in the Paul Zollo interview i think): that kids who want to be in bands or become a singer-songwriters should just study music theory - to see what all these song structures have in common. that's pretty much what he's done ad hoc as his major career thesis. it's also what's happening in the music -school -student -becoming- a -musician in the indy music scene trajectory. those music skills, paired with business savvy, seems to be what gets people 'over the hump' and get a couple albums out and manage an audience for a few years. beyond that, what happens is anybody's guess.

Author:  oldfan [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 18:06 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

jimb727 wrote:
We all know our hero to be a brilliant lyricist, performer and lately even a quite capable writer. But where did this all come from. What do we really know about Dylan's formal education??
I think we can safely assume he graduated high school, though to take a ridiculous notion from a recent campaign(humorously) I've never seen a diploma!! :P
What do my fellow fans know about what Bob studied in his brief college career? If anything. He went to college a semester or two right?? At which university?? Minnesota?? I really don't know alot about what makes Dylan tick intellectually. Suze's "mentoring" played a part,...right?? How much a part?? Don't know alot about this area and thought it might make an interesting topic which I haven't seen discussed.


actually - the facts are well-known and confirmed as to his education - (you ain't getting into college with a HS diploma -and does it matter what 5-10 classes he enrolled in as he be barely went to college....

as far as what makes anyone tick intellectually - one word - CURIOUSITY...what else???? easily of one of the most well-read singer-songwriter-musicians. That is easy to tell by as highly esteemed historians and literary professors who know him attest to. Aside from that - anyone is astounded by references...allusions...to literary firgures...which may approach an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music - that he has put out time and time again....added to that ridiculous savant-like memory (just check the scott warmuth source thread)

Author:  theunwavedhand [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 18:19 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

rolling_thunder wrote:
I don't believe you have to attend college to be educated. If you seek out education and read and study things on your own time, you can learn just as much as anybody can in a class somewhere. I know a lot of people who have gone to college, while I have sat at home reading various books. I'm just as smart as them if not smarter

The thing about college is they have guys there who challenge you, because without that you can go miles in the wrong direction and not know it, full of facts and all of them misplaced. Conversely, you can go where the professors point you and never think for yourself. It depends how determined you are to understand stuff and get it right.

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 19:05 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

rolling_thunder wrote:
I agree, we wouldn't have had a lot of the crap that has come out over the years. But to suggest that musicians need a formal education to make music is absurd.
What is absurd with having a piece of sheepskin hanging on the wall acknowledging one's completion of a degree program? It would be a rite of passage, so to speak. We'll never be able to garner the respect as rock & roll elitists if we don't establish some standards. For all I know, it may be too late.

Author:  Pauley [ Sat November 24th, 2012, 19:23 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

I don't know more than this:

http://www.music.indiana.edu/som/course ... dylan.html

Author:  thisisjohn [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 01:40 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Untrodden Path wrote:
Quite honestly, without the formal education and a four year earned degree, the record companies should have slammed the door on him and his like. Dylan was capable of earning the degree and we'd have still had his music in time. The upside to establishing a standard would be so much of the crap that passed for "music" would have been left on the table of coffee shops or the floors of garages and we'd all be better off.

Allowing just anybody who can play chord progressions, some fast-fingering solos, and write lyrics without a proper education has inundated record shops (and now iTunes) with too much of nothing. If these so-called artists couldn't hack the degree program and we never heard what they had to write, we'd be left with Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and the like.

It wouldn't be all that bad really...

You are absolutely right, my friend. And it is a complete disgrace to the Fuhrer, peace be upon him, to allow anyone lacking blue eyes, blonde hair, and a fit body any amount of fame or celebrity. After all, we would not want children to believe they can make something of their lives if they are not beautiful and educated.

Sweet Jesus, that was the stupidest thing I've read in a long time.

Author:  John B. Stetson [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 02:18 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

Untrodden Path is kidding, guys.

Author:  Troubadour64 [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 02:23 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

^ :lol:

i wish he himself would come out and say that every once in awhile!! i asked him directly and he said, 'Just Listen to the Ugliest Girl in the World ... it's all in there.' :idea:

Author:  John B. Stetson [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 02:49 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

:lol:
UP is hilarious. And he often walks a path not walked by anyone else, of course.

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 02:54 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

thisisjohn wrote:
Untrodden Path wrote:
Quite honestly, without the formal education and a four year earned degree, the record companies should have slammed the door on him and his like. Dylan was capable of earning the degree and we'd have still had his music in time. The upside to establishing a standard would be so much of the crap that passed for "music" would have been left on the table of coffee shops or the floors of garages and we'd all be better off.

Allowing just anybody who can play chord progressions, some fast-fingering solos, and write lyrics without a proper education has inundated record shops (and now iTunes) with too much of nothing. If these so-called artists couldn't hack the degree program and we never heard what they had to write, we'd be left with Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and the like.

It wouldn't be all that bad really...
Sweet Jesus, that was the stupidest thing I've read in a long time.

Ever heard of Axl Rose?


I rest my case.



But yes... I am kidding... kind of. :lol:

Author:  MMD [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 02:56 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

UP is like a sufi saint. He redeems just by proximity. I can see my aura getting brighter and healthier when I read his posts. Someone ought to formally recognize his devotion to and evangelizing of the NET.

Speak ill of him at your own spiritual peril.

Author:  rolling_thunder [ Sun November 25th, 2012, 09:26 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Dylan's Education

UP used to bother me a bit back in the day when he'd say things like "Bob needs to re-record Highway 61 and Blonde on Blonde with his current band", but I gotta say even though I still vehemently disagree with the above quote, over time I've come to find UP's devotion to the NET and late career Bob to be quite endearing actually. He's also pretty fun to gab with in the Political World section where we are rarely at odds, keep on shining UP, it was a long trek, but you've grown me. You should be proud :)

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