Monday, May 30, 2016
Dylan outflanks me again
Hey, did you read my post yesterday? Go ahead. I don't expect you to remember it even if you did. Just go ahead and read it now. I'll wait here.
What took so long? Oh, you wandered off and read dozens of other of my older posts? Well, gosh, I'm touched. But today we'll just be talking about yesterday's post. So you might want to go back and just refresh your memory on that particular one once more. If it's your third run through on the post you can probably just sort of skim it. I'll wait here.
Okay, we're all set.
This is a true story. All of it.
Yesterday's post, about how Bob Dylan covered The Great American Songbook, but how I think it would be better if, for instance, he covered the cheesy and semi cheesy songs of the late sixties and seventies, occurred to me when I was working on the automated check in machine at my library. My boss was in the back room with me, playing an array of music, which he listens to in between my occasional interruptions where I perform short pieces of original comic monologues, versions of which sometimes show up right here in this space. At some point back there the song Abraham, Martin, and John started playing.
It was the song that sparked the whole idea of yesterday's post. Wouldn't it be great if instead of those old standards, covered by Sinatra, Tony Bennett et al, Dylan covered a sort of ridiculous but almost wonderful song like Abraham, Martin, and John? The permutations were delightful to consider; He could also cover The Carpenters, Neil Diamond, The Osmonds. While I was working away on the machine I mused on this and composed some early version of the post in my head and maybe even performed a brief monologue of it for my boss, who seems to like my brief monologues (not that brief), but might just be laughing politely.
And somewhere in all that composing in my head, and humorously picturing Dylan absurdly singing old Bee Gees songs or Abraham, Martin, and John I thought I should actually look up Abraham, Martin, and John on the Internet and get my facts straight on it.
I soon found my way to its Wikipedia page. First recorded by Dion it was a Number four hit. It was written in 1968 by Dick Holler. Then I was reading some of the people who covered it: Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Andy Williams, Moms Mabley, Leonard Nimoy, and then this:
During a 1981 tour, Bob Dylan sang the song in concert.