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The Times They Are A-Changin'
List Price: $11.98

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Product Description

Limited edition Japanese pressing of the remastered 1964 album features the 10 original tracks packaged in a miniature LP sleeve. Sony. 2005.

Customer Reviews:

  • These are what Dylan once called "finger-pointin' songs"
    (Actually ****1/2, but Amazon doesn't allow half stars.)

    This album stars Robert Zimmerman as one Bob Dylan, a homegrown American protest folksinger coming out of the backcountry with a keen eye for injustice and a keener ear for memorable, plainspoken lines to expose and excoriate that injustice. Of course on his very next album that same Dylan turned his back on the civil rights movement at the height of its prominence, influence and power to change the country, which to me does cast just the tiniest bit of doubt and suspicion on the sincerity or at least the fervor of these songs. But with that said, at this point in his career Bob Dylan happened to have a still unequaled ability to say big things with small words, and these songs are the best of their genre.

    The title track is Dylan's second epochal, anthemic album opener in a row, and it's just as irrevocably tied to and representative of the early '60s as is "Blowin' in the Wind" from the last album. "When the Ship Comes In" is a raspy little ditty all full of lovely imagery all built around a ship's arrival as a metaphor for victory, presumably a victory of the civil rights movement. The moving and rightly classic "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll" captures Dylan the protest singer at the absolute height of his powers to tell a story, paint a picture and a stir up outrage.

    "Only a Pawn in Their Game" should be a terrible song. In it, Bob uses the recent assassination of Medgar Evers as a jumping-off point to argue that the white Southern elite inculcates and exploits racism among poor white Southerners in order to keep them hateful toward and divided from the poor black Southerners who should be their class allies against that elite. Now that's a theme that sounds like its natural venue is an essay, a political speech or perhaps a scholarly book. So I would expect the thing to turn out as one of those really awkward, unenjoyable folk songs with too many syllables that make me want to throw a typewriter at the singer. But Bob Dylan in 1964 had the lyrical chops to make it work, and it ends up being one of the best songs on a nearly perfect album.

    I say nearly perfect because "Restless Farewell" is a subdued, unimpressive good-bye that just sort of drags along without ever grabbing or rewarding my attention. But apart from that, my gods, if he would've kept on like this maybe we could have had a revolution.

    Song by song:

    A1 The Times They Are A-Changin' ****
    A2 Ballad of Hollis Brown ***
    A3 With God on Our Side ***
    A4 One Too Many Mornings ***
    A5 North Country Blues ***
    B1 Only a Pawn in Their Game ****
    B2 Boots of Spanish Leather ***
    B3 When the Ship Comes In ****
    B4 The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll ***
    B5 Restless Farewell **...more info
  • Amazing album
    I was deeply impressed with this album from the first listen. From the opening track 'The Times They Are A-Changin' to 'Restless Farewell', the listener is immersed in an album truly reflective of the chaotic 60's in which it was produced. So much of these songs still ring true today. Consider this a mint from Dylan's protest days and an essential purchase for all those into acoustic folk. Brilliant....more info
  • Bob Dylan Unplugged
    In reviewing Bob Dylan's 1965 classic album Bringing All Back Home (you know, the one where he went electric) I noted that it seemed hard to believe now that both as to the performer as well as to what was being attempted that anyone would take umbrage at a performer using an electric guitar to tell a folk story (or any story for that matter). I further pointed out that it is not necessary to go into all the details of what or what did not happen with Pete Seeger at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965 to know that one should be glad, glad as hell, that Bob Dylan continued to listen to his own drummer and carry on a career based on electronic music.

    Others have, endlessly, gone on about Bob Dylan's role as the voice of his generation (and mine), his lyrics and what they do or do not mean and his place in the rock or folk pantheons, or both. Here we are going back to the early days when there was no dispute that he had earned a place in the folk pantheon. The only real difference between the early stuff and the later electric stuff though is- the electricity. Dylan's extraordinary sense of words, language and word play has been a constant throughout his career. If much later (in the 1990's) he gets a bit repetitious and a little gimmicky in order to stay "relevant" that is only much later after he had done more than his share to add to the language of music.

    In this selection we have some outright folk classics that will endure for the ages like those of his early hero Woody Guthrie's have endured. The Times They are A-Changing still sounds good today although the generational tensions and the alienation from authorities highlighted there is markedly less now than than in those days-not a good thing, by the way. The Ballad of Hollis Brown is a powerful tale out of John Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath about the plight of an up against the wall family farmer out on the then hard hit praries (and it has only gotten worst since and Dylan made one of his periodic 'comebacks' doing this song at a FarmAid concert in the 1980's).

    With God On Our Side like Masters of War is a powerful anti-war song although some of the tensions of the Cold War period in which it was written have gone (only to replaced today by the fears generated by the `war on terrorism'). Only A Pawn In Their Game was a powerful expression of rage after the murder of civil rights worker Medgar Evers. The Hattie Carroll song shows Dylan's range by dealing with injustice from a different perspective (and a different class) than Only A Pawn In Their Game. But with no let up in racial discrimination in either case. Finally, in reviewing these early Dylan albums (and some of the later ones, as well) I have noticed that they are not complete without at least one song about lost love, longing for love or betrayal of that emotion. Here, there is no exception to that rule with the haunting, pleading voice of Boots of Spanish Leather.
    ...more info
  • As good as it gets
    I am amazed by people who attempt to stereotype creative genius. Because this album takes on a distinctly different (more ominous, brooding, cutting) mood from the first two albums, they regard it sub-standard! Even in the classic 'Rolling Stone Record Guide' of 1983, the 'critic' failed to appreciate this album, giving it a meagre three stars because he felt its lyrics over-critical and dated. Yet I listen to this album in 2008, 25 years later, and am still moved, and deeply so, by the universality of the subject matter - to say nothing of the music itself. It is, after all, by induction that we generalise from the particular - something that Dylan the bard is brilliant at achieving in his tales. (In just the same way, the critics, and those they influence, miss the boat by regarding 'Live at Budokan' as awful because Dylan had the impertinence to re-interpret his own songs!) 'The times...' (and 'Budokan')are both as exquisite as any of the albums traditionally regarded as Dylan's best....more info
  • Everybody Should be Free
    The opening track, "The Times they are a-Changin'" is a call to arms. It was heeded in the Sixties when the streets were filled with protesters, kids who wanted an end to the war in Vietnam. Dylan has sung this song countless times over the years, talking about the battle that is outside raging, but somehow we've forgotten this message, though we sing the words with Dylan at almost every concert he's given on his never ending tour. Sadly there are almost no protesters today. And it seems if one does raise a voice, bad things could happen to him.

    Lord, I have to wonder if God ever was on our side. Bob Dylan doesn't think he was, but there are so many today who are convinced he is, maybe they should listen to this record. At least we've done something about the horrible racism Dylan sings about on "Only a Pawn in Their Game" and the haunting "Ballad of Hollis Brown," but we have a long way to go. I think all those people who are so against those who only want to better themselves by coming to America should be forced to sit down and listen to this record. That's what I think....more info
  • Every Word is Significant, Important
    "The Times They Are A-Changing" the title song of the album is a song that will have you questioning your values, questioning your complacency. "The Ballad of Hollis Brown" and "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll" will just plain make you mad. "North Country Blues" will make you weep for the coal minors and iron workers and those less fortunate. And "With God on Our Side" A song that Bob Dylan used to perform with Joan Baez a lot a long time ago will make you think. Every word in these songs is significant, every word important. This is another of those Bob Dylan records everybody should own. It should be like a rule....more info
  • Everybody Should be Free
    The opening track, "The Times they are a-Changin'" is a call to arms. It was heeded in the Sixties when the streets were filled with protesters, kids who wanted an end to the war in Vietnam. Dylan has sung this song countless times over the years, talking about the battle that is outside raging, but somehow we've forgotten this message, though we sing the words with Dylan at almost every concert he's given on his never ending tour. Sadly there are almost no protesters today. And it seems if one does raise a voice, bad things could happen to him.

    Lord, I have to wonder if God ever was on our side. Bob Dylan doesn't think he was, but there are so many today who are convinced he is, maybe they should listen to this record. At least we've done something about the horrible racism Dylan sings about on "Only a Pawn in Their Game" and the haunting "Ballad of Hollis Brown," but we have a long way to go. I think all those people who are so against those who only want to better themselves by coming to America should be forced to sit down and listen to this record. That's what I think....more info
  • This Album Still Has Meaning Today
    "The Times They Are a-Changin'" is one young man's rage against how things are going in America back in the '60s and the song still rings true today. We still have war and corrupt politicians and parents who will never understand their sons and daughters. I guess some things never change. "With God on Our Side," is a long song about war that also is relevant today, it just needs a verse about Iraq at the end of it. This is an album that is impossible to listen to without wanting to get up and do something about the state of affairs in the world today....more info
  • A Protest Record with some Great Love Songs too
    Everybody knows about and has heard "The Times They are A-Changin," one of Bob Dylan's biggest hits. And everybody knows he had a protest period and that this record came out smack in the middle of it. But what they may not know is that there are a songs about love and loss on this album that will tear your heart out. Bob Dylan then as now was a master of words. Probably the greatest wordsmith of his generation, mine too. And then there is that song that is impossible to define "The Hour that the Ship Comes in." It is just simply to good for words, powerful, I can say that. Very powerful. But my favorite song here is "One too Many Mornings." It gets a tear or two from me every time I hear it....more info
  • One of the Most Important Records to Ever Come Out
    "Come Senators and Congressmen please heed the call and get out of the doorway if you can't lend a hand, for the times they are a changin'." Powerful words, but sadly the times didn't change all that much. We still have war. Medicine still isn't free. They still put you in jail for smoking a joint. Politics is still corrupt. What's changed? The Baby Boomers blew it. The title song for this record is as relevant today as it was when Bob Dylan first sang it. He's still singing it. Is everybody deaf? Have the Boomers turned into their parents? Anyway, regardless of all of the above, this is a dynamic song on a dynamic record. One of the most important records to every come out. Everybody should own this....more info
  • Haunting, serious, and the end of an era
    I think Bob saw that this whole protest movent was going to get us knowhere, he saw that this world will always be filled with strife regardless of protest songs and marches. He quickly jumped ship and in the end became a normal musician with extreme ups and unfortunatley alot of downs. He was not destined to become a freedom/musician martyr like Bob Marley. This seems to be a concept album and is great if you are in the mood for it. Lryically, it is great, as alot of Dylan albums are. "Boots of Spanish Leather", although performed with more emotion live at Carnegie Hall 1963, is a striking love ballad that can be interperted in many ways. Im not found of the guitar sound on this record, but its near sloppiness contributes to the remorse of the record. "One to Many Mornings" is quiet and sad, while "The hour that the ship comes in" is triumphant. Depending on what you want from Bob, this is essential. ...more info
  • Mandatory listening for all Americans.
    A perfect album that was written way before my time, but still is absolutely relevant in every way today. Politics, Race, War, Employment, Depression, every topic is hear and clear....more info