Blood on the Tracks Revisited as More Blood, More Tracks

Legacy Recordings announces the 14th volume of the long-running Bob Dylan Bootleg Series

 

More Blood, More Tracks: The Bob Dylan Bootleg Series Vol. 14, Sony/Legacy 2018

Of all his landmark albums, Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks remains, in the view of many, his most memorable effort of all time. A concept album of sorts that appeared to detail his crumbling relationship with his wife Sarah, it’s often viewed as the most personal — and poignant — album of Dylan’s career and, arguably, his best to boot.

Consequently, it’s with great anticipation that Sony/Legacy has announced the 14th instalment of its award-winning Dylan Bootleg Series, More Blood, More Tracks, scheduled for release on November 2. Available as an expansive six-disc box set complete with a hardcover book of a reproduction of Dylan’s lyrics, unreleased photos and an extensive essay by journalist Jeff Slate, the collection documents all the sessions that led to the final album which was eventually released on January 20, 1975. This marks the first time that all the recordings made in conjunction with this masterpiece — four in New York (September 16, 17, 18, 19) and two in Minneapolis (December 27, 30) — have been offered in a legitimate form. (Although a handful were released as part of the Bootleg Series, Vol. 1 – 3.) A compilation of selected tracks will also be available on a single CD and  2 LPs.

Dylan’s 15th album up until that time, Blood on the Tracks reached #1 on the Billboard album charts, achieved RIAA 2x Platinum status and was eventually included in the Grammy albums Hall of Fame in 2015. Nevertheless, it was not without its challenges. Conceived at a time of personal tumult due to his matrimonial woes, Dylan decided to rerecord many of the songs he had created in New York and subsequently retreated to Minneapolis to redo the work with a different crew of musicians.

The innards of Vol. 14

At the time, Dylan credited painter Norman Raeben, with whom he was studying, for inspiring the songs. Initially, the album met with mixed reviews from both critics and colleagues. Stephen Stills, who along with Graham Nash was given a private listen by Dylan himself, supposedly said that he appreciated the material but that Dylan’s delivery was below par. The cantankerous critic Robert Christgau panned it as well. Dylan’s brother David convinced Dylan to rerecord several songs because he didn’t deem it commercial enough. Even Dylan’s son Jakob also chimed in, later describing it as sounding like an argument between his parents.

For his part, Dylan denied that the music was based on his personal experiences, insisting that he didn’t write confessional songs. He maintained that they took root in the short stories of Anton Chekov.

Whatever the real story may be, Blood on the Tracks remains one of Dylan’s most powerful efforts of all time, and the acclaim that accompanied it overshadowed any disparaging descriptions. Interviewed on the radio by singer Mary Travers a few months after the album’s release, Dylan offered his own assessment. “A lot of people tell me they enjoy that album,” he said. “It’s hard for me to relate to that. I mean … people enjoying that type of pain, you know?”

While some of the tracks  have circulated as bootlegs, the new album offers them with complete clarity and as they were originally put to tape. In his liner notes, Slate writes, “Dylan cut each of these amazing performances – some of the best he ever committed to tape – one after the other, live in the studio, without headphones, and without the types of overdubs that most performers rely on to make their records sound finished. Instead, on these tracks, we find Dylan – just a singer with a guitar and a harmonica and a batch of great songs – delivering performances that thrill you when they’re supposed to and break your heart when they need to…. The performances are also in the purest state we’ve ever experienced them. During the production of Blood on the Tracks, Dylan asked [producer Phil] Ramone to speed up many of the masters by 2-3 percent, a common practice in the 1960s and ’70s, especially for records sent to AM radio. It was thought that doing so would give the songs a little extra bounce to better engage listeners. Most of the songs from the New York sessions that previously circulated, officially and unofficially, are the sped-up versions that Dylan requested. On More Blood, More Tracks, for the first time, we’re hearing the songs exactly as Dylan recorded them.”

The complete track listing and credits are as follows:

1 CD / 2LP:

Tangled Up in Blue (9/19/74, Take 3, Remake 3)

Simple Twist of Fate (9/16/74, Take 1)

Shelter From The Storm (9/17/74, Take 2)

You’re a Big Girl Now (9/16/74, Take 2)

Buckets of Rain (9/18/74, Take 2, Remake)

If You See Her, Say Hello (9/16/74, Take 1)

Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts (9/16/74, Take 2)

Meet Me in the Morning (9/19/74, Take 1, Remake)

Idiot Wind (9/19/74, Take 4, Remake)

You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (9/17/74, Take 1, Remake)

Up to Me (9/19/74, Take 2, Remake)

All Tracks Recorded
A & R Studios
New York 9/16 – 9/19/1974

Tracks Recorded 9/16 & 18
Bob Dylan – vocals, guitar, harmonica

Tracks Recorded 9/17 & 19
Bob Dylan – vocals, guitar, harmonica
Tony Brown – bass

All songs written by Bob Dylan

BOB DYLAN
MORE BLOOD, MORE TRACKS
THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 14
6 CD Deluxe Edition

DISC 1

A & R Studios
New York
September 16, 1974

If You See Her, Say Hello (Take 1) – solo
If You See Her, Say Hello (Take 2) – solo – previously released on The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3: Rare and Unreleased, 1961-1991
You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 1) – solo
You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 2) – solo
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 1) – solo
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 2) – solo
You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 3) – solo
Up to Me (Rehearsal) – solo
Up to Me (Take 1) – solo
Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts (Take 1) – solo
Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts (Take 2) – solo – included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing

Bob Dylan – vocals, guitar, harmonica

DISC 2

A & R Studios
New York
September 16, 1974

Simple Twist of Fate (Take 1A) – with band
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 2A) – with band
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 3A) – with band
Call Letter Blues (Take 1) – with band
Meet Me in the Morning (Take 1) – with band – edited version included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing and previously released on Blood on the Tracks
Call Letter Blues (Take 2) – with band – previously released on The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3: Rare and Unreleased, 1961-1991
Idiot Wind (Take 1) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 1, Remake) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 3 with insert) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 5) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 6) – with bass
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Rehearsal and Take 1) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 2) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 3) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 4) – with bass
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 5) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 6) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 6, Remake) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 7) – with band
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 8) – with band

Bob Dylan: vocals, guitar, harmonica
Eric Weissberg, Charles Brown III, Barry Kornfeld: guitars
Thomas McFaul: keyboards
Tony Brown: bass
Richard Crooks: drums
Buddy Cage: steel guitar (5-6)

DISC 3

A & R Studios
New York
September 16, 1974

Tangled Up in Blue (Take 1) – with bass

A & R Studios
New York
September 17, 1974

You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 1, Remake) – with bass and organ
You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 2, Remake) – with bass, organ, and steel guitar –included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing and previously released on Biograph
Tangled Up in Blue (Rehearsal) – with bass and organ
Tangled Up in Blue (Take 2, Remake) – with bass and organ
Spanish is the Loving Tongue (Take 1) – with bass and piano
Call Letter Blues (Rehearsal) – with bass and piano
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 1, Remake) – with bass and piano
Shelter From The Storm (Take 1) – with bass and piano – previously released on the Jerry McGuire original soundtrack
Buckets of Rain (Take 1) – with bass
Tangled Up in Blue (Take 3, Remake) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 2) – with bass
Shelter From The Storm (Take 2) – with bass
Shelter From The Storm (Take 3) – with bass
Shelter From The Storm (Take 4) – with bass – previously released on Blood on the Tracks

Bob Dylan: vocals, guitar, harmonica
Tony Brown: bass
Paul Griffin: keyboards (2-9)
Buddy Cage: steel guitar (3)

DISC 4

A & R Studios
New York
September 17, 1974

You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go (Take 2, Remake 2) – with bass – previously released on Blood on the Tracks

A & R Studios
New York
September 18, 1974

Buckets of Rain (Take 1, Remake) – solo
Buckets of Rain (Take 2, Remake) – solo
Buckets of Rain (Take 3, Remake) – solo
Buckets of Rain (Take 4, Remake) – solo

A & R Studios
New York
September 19, 1974

Up to Me (Take 1, Remake) – with bass
Up to Me (Take 2, Remake) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 2, Remake 2) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 3, Remake 2) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 4, Remake 2) – with bass – previously released on Blood on the Tracks
If You See Her, Say Hello (Take 1, Remake) – with bass – previously included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing
Up to Me (Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
Up to Me (Take 2, Remake 2) – with bass
Up to Me (Take 3, Remake 2) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Rehearsal) – with bass
Meet Me in the Morning (Take 1, Remake) – with bass – previously released on the “Duquesne Whistle” 7” single
Meet Me in the Morning (Take 2, Remake) – with bass
Buckets of Rain (Take 5, Remake 2) – with bass

Bob Dylan: vocals, guitar, harmonica
Tony Brown: bass (1-2, 7-20)

DISC 5

A & R Studios
New York
September 19, 1974

Tangled Up in Blue (Rehearsal and Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
Tangled Up in Blue (Take 2, Remake 2) – with bass
Tangled Up in Blue (Take 3, Remake 2) – with bass – included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing and previously released on The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3: Rare and Unreleased, 1961-1991
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 2, Remake) – with bass
Simple Twist of Fate (Take 3, Remake) – with bass – previously released on Blood on the Tracks
Up to Me (Rehearsal and Take 1, Remake 3) – with bass
Up to Me (Take 2, Remake 3) – with bass – previously released on Biograph
Idiot Wind (Rehearsal and Takes 1-3, Remake) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 4, Remake) – with bass
Idiot Wind (Take 4, Remake) – with organ overdub – included on Blood on the Tracks test pressing and previously released on The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3: Rare and Unreleased, 1961-1991
You’re a Big Girl Now (Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
Meet Me in the Morning (Take 1, Remake 2) – with bass
Meet Me in the Morning (Takes 2-3, Remake 2) – with bass

Bob Dylan: vocals, guitar, harmonica
Tony Brown: bass

DISC 6

A & R Studios
New York
September 19, 1974

You’re a Big Girl Now (Takes 3-6, Remake 2) – with bass
Tangled Up in Blue (Rehearsal and Takes 1-2, Remake 3) – with bass
Tangled Up in Blue (Take 3, Remake 3) – with bass

Sound 80 Studio
Minneapolis, MN
December 27, 1974

Idiot Wind – with band – previously released on Blood on the Tracks
You’re a Big Girl Now – with band – previously released on Blood on the Tracks

Sound 80 Studio
Minneapolis, MN
December 30, 1974

Tangled Up in Blue – with band – previously released on Blood on the Tracks
Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts – with band – previously released on Blood on the Tracks
If You See Her, Say Hello – with band – previously released on Blood on the Tracks

Bob Dylan: vocals, guitar, harmonica, organ (4-5), mandolin (8)
Tony Brown: bass (1-3)
Chris Weber: guitar (4-6, 8)
Kevin Odegard: guitar (6)
Peter Ostroushko: mandolin (8)
Gregg Inhofer: keyboards (4-8)
Billy Peterson: bass (4, 6-7)
Bill Berg: drums (4-8)

All songs written by Bob Dylan except Spanish is the Loving Tongue (traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)

New York sessions originally engineered by Phil Ramone

Minneapolis sessions originally engineered by Paul Martinson

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *