top of page

Bob Dylan’s Latest LP: “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan”

May 27, 1963 - On sale today is Bob Dylan’s second long-playing record, “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan,” a Columbia Records release. Whereas Dylan’s self-titled debut album, “Bob Dylan,” contained only 2 original songs — “Talkin’ New York” and “Song to Woody” — 11 of the 13 songs on the new album are Dylan’s original compositions. Dylan’s lyrics embrace news stories drawn from headlines about the civil rights movement (“Oxford Town”), and he articulates anxieties about nuclear warfare as well (“A Hard Rain's a-Gonna Fall”). Dylan premiered the latter song on September 22 of last year at an all-star hootenanny at Carnegie Hall. Balancing this political material on the album are love songs (“Girl from the North Country”) and material that features surreal humor (“Bob Dylan’s Dream”). Some drama occurred earlier this month when Dylan was scheduled to appear on The Ed Sullivan Show May 12. Dylan (pictured below at rehearsals for the show) had told Sullivan he would perform “Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues”, but the head of program practices at CBS-TV informed Dylan that the song was potentially libelous to the John Birch Society and asked him to perform another number. Rather than comply, Dylan refused to appear on the show. The song is not included on the new album.


bottom of page