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April 9th, 1969: New Bob Dylan album, featuring vocals and liner notes by Johnny Cash

New Bob Dylan album, featuring vocals and liner notes by Johnny Cash

The events we write about at Gaslight Records happened in some form or another 50 years ago to the day. Roll along with us and imagine you are back in 1969.

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According to photographer Elliott Landy the coat Dylan is wearing in the album cover is the same coat he wore on the cover art for his last two albums, Blonde On Blonde and John Wesley Harding.

April 9, 1969: It's been almost 18 months since Bob Dylan released his last album of new material, John Wesley Harding. Today the 28 year old released his ninth album, Nashville Skyline.

Nashville Skyline sees Dylan sharing vocal duties for the first time on a studio album, with the opening track featuring Johnny Cash. Cash also contributed a poem, Of Bob Dylan for the albums liner notes (read below). The Cash/Dylan vocal pairing apparently came about in February as both Cash and Dylan were recording at Columbia Studios in Nashville. The two spent a couple of days in the studio together recording a range of originals and covers. Only a duet of Dylan's "Girl From The North Country" made it onto the album.

Listen below to one of the session outtakes, Johnny Cash's "I Guess Things Happen That Way."

Dylan fans will once again have to adjust to a new Bob Dylan voice on Nashville Skyline as he sings in a crooning baritone voice which he attributes to having recently quit smoking. His voice here is in stark contrast to the last time we heard him with The Band at the Woody Guthrie Tribute Concert held in New York in January last year. Listen to his performance of Guthrie's "Grand Coulee Dam" below.

For anyone hoping to catch Bob Dylan live, there are rumors circling of a festival being organized to take place this summer in Dylan's new hometown of Woodstock, NY. We will keep you updated as plans for the festival unfold.

Dylan will also be performing at The Grand Ole Opry on May 1st for the Johnny Cash Show.

Listen below to Nashville Skyline in full via Spotify.

Nashville Skyline:

Side One

1. Girl from the North Country (duet with Johnny Cash)

2. Nashville Skyline Rag

3. To Be Alone with You

4. I Threw It All Away

5. Peggy Day

Side Two

1. Lay Lady Lay

2. One More Night

3. Tell Me That It Isn't True

4. Country Pie

5. Tonight I'll Be Staying Here with You

New Bob Dylan album, featuring vocals and liner notes by Johnny Cash
Bob Dylan at home in Woodstock: 1968

Of Bob Dylan: by Johnny Cash

There are those who do not imitate,

Who cannot imitate

But then there are those who emulate

At times, to expand further the light

Of an original glow.

Knowing that to imitate the living

Is mockery

And to imitate the dead

Is robbery

There are those

Who are beings complete unto themselves

Whole, undaunted,-a source

As leaves of grass, as stars

As mountains, alike, alike, alike,

Yet unalike

Each is complete and contained

And as each unalike star shines

Each ray of light is forever gone

To leave way for a new ray

And a new ray, as from a fountain

Complete unto itself, full, flowing

So are some souls like stars

And their words, works and songs

Like strong, quick flashes of light

From a brilliant, erupting cone.

So where are your mountains

To match some men?

This man can rhyme the tick of time

The edge of pain, the what of sane

And comprehend the good in men, the bad in men

Can feel the hate of fight, the love of right

And the creep of blight at the speed of light

The pain of dawn, the gone of gone

The end of friend, the end of end

By math of trend

What grip to hold what he is told

How long to hold, how strong to hold

How much to hold of what is told.

And Know

The yield of rend; the break of bend

The scar of mend

I'm proud to say that I know it,

Here-in is a hell of a poet.

And lots of other things

And lots of other things.

Johnny Cash

Watch below, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash playing "I Still Miss Someone" backstage at Dylan's concert in Wales, 1966.

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