The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #142469 Message #3284613
Posted By: Marje
04-Jan-12 - 08:20 AM
Thread Name: Why didn't MacColl like Dylan?
Subject: RE: Why didn't MacColl like Dylan?
One thing that I'd guess would annoy MacColl is the way Dylan (from what I've seen of him in documentaries) generally refuses to discuss his work in an analytical way, whereas MacColl did so obsessively. Dylan tends to favour throwaway, tongue-in-cheek remarks that seemed intended to deter further questions, and is reluctant to discuss his choice of materials, his style of musicianship and singing, or his lyric compostions in a serious way. I can see how this would really get up EM's nose.
It can't be just the American idiom that's the problem, as someone has pointed out, because of EM's personal and musical involvement with Peggy Seeger. A song like "Dirty Old Town" owes more to the US tradition than the British one.
And as for why we want to discuss this at all - well, you don't have to read it if you don't think it's worth discussing. Many of us find it interesting to know what two much-respected folk singers and songwriters thought of each other, especially as the work of both men owed a lot to both the American and the British traditions.
But when you consider the love songs that both have written in their less politically-driven moments - say, "The First Time" and "Show my Love for You", maybe they're not so far apart.
Oh, and Brian - I love the Wapping/Stopping rhyme - I know it's silly and a bit Les Barker, but it makes me smile every time.