I Would Just Like to Say I’m Glad Bob Dylan Isn’t Dead

The song is okay too.

DAPR/Zuma

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

When it became clear that people 65 and older were at higher risk for severe illness from the coronavirus, I instinctively started worrying about my favorite, Bob Dylan. I checked the perpetually touring geezer’s website to make sure he’d canceled his tour dates in Japan (he had), and felt a touch a comfort.

But Dylan’s scant media presence makes it hard to discern how he’s really doing. Then, he released a nearly 17-minute-long track about John F. Kennedy’s assassination, assuring me that he’s okay—probably.

I don’t really know if “Murder Most Foul” is any good or if it means Bob Dylan has gone insane. But it means Bob Dylan’s still kicking. That’s all that matters.

The Nobel Laureate’s first original song in eight years includes such questionable poetry as, “Rub-a-dub-dub, it’s a murder most foul,” and “What’s new, pussycat? What’d I say? / I said the soul of a nation been torn away.” The track—a typical, rambling, refrain-less Dylan ballad—has the old crooner’s voice sounding smoother than usual. Yet the song’s successive references to sixties music remind us that Dylan hit his peak long ago. His output is not dark yet, but it’s getting there.

Either way, happy 80th birthday to Bob Dylan.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate