Bob Dylan Posts

Build a Goddamn Bob Dylan Statue Already

For real, I think there needs to be more serious discussion about a Duluth Bob Dylan statue. He’s the (checks notes) greatest songwriter in the world (the Nobel Prize people compared him to Homer and Blake), and Duluth is his (checks notes again) literal birthplace. Where did I read — perhaps buried in the epic comments of this PDD Facebook post — that local/regional Dylan relatives disfavor statues, as opposed to a nice plaque or something? An MPR article cites “a Dylan family member” who states a preference for educational work instead. I get it. But Dylan must have dozens of relatives, did we ask them all? Do we have to ask any of them, since Dylan belongs to the world?

I also get that statues are falling out of favor and may become problematic. The meaning of a statue can change. Maybe it would be better to just name a street, or a music center, or erect a plaque — something you can quietly change up or take down in a hurry if history reverses on you. But respectfully, I worry that plaques and manhole covers are simply too boring to honor the greatest songwriter in the world besides Taylor Swift.

You think Taylor Swift will only get some nice manhole covers? You think they won’t build a statue in her hometown by the time she’s Dylan’s current age of 82?

Jesus Christ Meets Bob Dylan in a Hotel Room in Tucson, 1978

Bob: I’m ready to accept you, Lord.

Jesus: Not so fast there Bob. I need you to do something first.

Bob: Name it Lord.

Jesus: I need you to rub out Jimmy Gravante.

Bob (stunned): The hitman?

Jesus: Your successor in the Duluth family, after you got out and became — this (gestures around). You know Jimmy — the sniper who blew you off your motorcycle in 1966 in Woodstock.

Bob: He hit the bike, man, not me. Sniper my ass.

Jesus: I’m going to need you to check your tone.

Bob: I’m sorry Lord. It’s just that he wasn’t even at 200 yards. He’s more like a potshot expert than a sniper. And my divorce is killing me. I just got off a world tour and my adrenal glands feel squeezed dry like little raisins. Think I’m coming down with something (sniffles).

Bob Dylan on Duluth and Minnesota

Some Duluthians think Bob Dylan hates Duluth and Minnesota. What has Bob Dylan actually said?

I’d heard rumors Dylan was a Duluth hater, but then I read the liner notes to his 1974 album Planet Waves, where he wrote: “Duluth! Duluth — where Baudelaire Lived/& Goya cashed in his Chips, where Joshua brought/the house down!” These are not the words of someone who hates Duluth. These words lionize the city in terms of literature and mythology. A song on the album mentions Duluth too. From “Something There is About You“: “Thought I’d shaken the wonder/And the phantoms of my youth/Rainy days on the great lakes/Walkin’ the hills of old Duluth.” Duluth as a city of wonder and phantoms: who among us cannot relate?

Growing up in Hibbing, Dylan had family in Duluth and Superior. As a teen he went to Minneapolis more and more, and that became his jumping-off point to the world. But the Northland never left him. From his autobiography Chronicles, Volume One (2004 edition), one reads many references to Duluth, Hibbing, Minneapolis, and Minnesota as a whole.

My phone call with Kathy Cargill

100 Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan

The Committee for Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan, Duluth’s premier Bob Dylan monuments organization, remains hard at work designing giant colossal statues of Bob Dylan.

Press releases supporting Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan

The Committee for Building Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan is pleased about the following press releases from the Building Trades and Essential Health:


MN Trades and Building Council Endorses Plan to Build 12 Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan

[Duluth, MN] – The Minnesota Trades and Building Council (MTBC) is proud to announce its full support for the construction of 12 giant colossal statues of Bob Dylan.

The MTBC believes that this project will bring significant economic benefits to the local community, and we look forward to working with the Committee for Building Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan to make this project a reality.

Giant Colossal Bob Dylan Statue Finalists

Location: The horizon, in the shipping lanes. Material: Reinforced treated concrete with steel superstructure. Height (above the waterline): 300 feet. Ships will have to navigate around this stunning monument.

The Committee for Building Giant Colossal Statues of Bob Dylan (formerly the Committee for Building a Giant Colossal Statue of Bob Dylan) is pleased to announce its 12 finalists! Thanks to a generous anonymous donation, ALL of the statues in this post will be built in the next five years. Thank you to our state regulators who approved this project, and congratulations, Duluth!

The Committee for Building a Giant Colossal Statue of Bob Dylan

Proposal: Building a Giant Colossal Statue of Bob Dylan in Lake Superior by Duluth’s Aerial Lift Bridge Canal.

Duluth Mojo

The February issue of Mojo, the top music magazine in the United Kingdom, includes Duluth’s Mimi Parker in its “Real Gone” obituary column. The cover of the March issue features Duluth-born Bob Dylan.

Bob Dylan’s Hibbing High School love letters sold for $670K

The Associated Press reports 42 handwritten love letters from Robert Zimmerman to his high school sweetheart, Barbara Ann Hewitt, were sold at auction to a Portuguese bookshop for nearly $670,000.

When Blossom went to Hibbing and got bad directions

Actress and Jeopardy! host Mayim Bialik was a guest on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert on April 4. At about the 4:50 mark in the clip above she tells the story of traveling with her father to the Iron Range to visit their “personal Mecca, which is Hibbing, Minn., the birthplace of Robert Zimmerman — also known as Bob Dylan.”

Of course, the Jeopardy! question that would lead one to the place where Robert Zimmerman was born is “What is Duluth?” The Zimmerman family moved to Hibbing when Robert was 6 years old.

Bob Dylan’s Last Hit

“Bob Dylan got away with murder.” —John Lennon

October 1960. Nineteen-year-old Bob Dylan takes the bus from Minneapolis to Duluth under a cloudless sun. With a head full of songs, he steps off the Greyhound carrying a backpack and two guitar cases. One case has a sticker saying “Ten O’clock Scholar Coffeehouse.” The other has blue words painted on it, “the Tombstone Blues.” A cab drops him at the Kozy, a desolate shithole even then. He rents a room. Placing the backpack and Ten O’clock Scholar on the bed, he leaves with the Tombstone Blues.

Bob walks a few blocks to his childhood home in the faded warmth of dim memories. Then he heads toward the Owls Club. He tries not to look at St. Mary’s Hospital, where he was born, as if he holds a grudge. Entering the club he walks past the bar to the pool room. Cigar smoke fills the air. He is greeted by the Scaletta family: Louie the King, Frankie Mineshaft, Mack the Finger, and Sammy Gaspipe. Several other made men and tough guys haunt the shadows. The King shakes his hand. “Good to see you, Bobby. After this, your debt is paid. But it’s too bad we gotta lose you. Sure we can’t convince you…?” Bob feels the menace of the question but he knows the King respects him — and maybe even fears him a little bit. “No thanks Louie, I got something else in mind for myself.” “Well I tell ya kid, it’s been a pleasure to watch you work.”

Bob Dylan on Hibbing from 1966 Playboy interview

Dude reads highlights from the 1966 Playboy interview. Dylan on Hibbing: @6:40-8:53.

Video Archive: Bob Dylan’s childhood home in Hibbing, 1988

WDIO-TV has pulled this relic from its archive to share during Duluth Dylan Fest week. The news clip is from Oct. 10, 1988. Dylan’s boyhood home was on the market at the time. Reporter Leonard Lee went inside the house and into the former bedroom of the music icon where a shrine of sorts had been displayed. Items of note: an autograph from a pre-fame Bobby Zimmerman and a mezuzah shaped like a guitar.

The moments where the video briefly drops out are glitches in the 3/4-inch tape.

Low – “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door”

Low’s cover of “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” is available on the Dylan Revisited CD, available with the June 2021 issue of Uncut magazine. The album features 14 recordings of Dylan songs alongside an unreleased Dylan track.