Sometimes your expectations can play with you. That certainly was the case when I started reading Bob Dylan’s Chronicles (Volume One). I figured with the book titled Chronicles I would be reading a mostly point A to point B, story of my life biography. Well, I figured wrong.
Chronicles certainly has its fair share of “and then and then and then”. Most biographies have at least some degree of that sort of thing. But Dylan also leaves significant gaps in his story line. Gaps big and odd enough that I actually went back and looked to see if I had missed something. Or whether there were missing pages. The book also follows a circular structure – early life/career – middle life/career – early life/career. Couldn’t help but think of Pulp Fiction and how the film used a similar method to tell a story. Maybe Dylan was thinking about that too. Or maybe not.
It’s no secret that Dylan is a good songwriter and musician. Chronicles gives us a glimpse into just how well studied he was. He read, listened to and watched just about everything. He learned song after song after song. Played loads of gigs. He worked hard.
I learned a lot from reading Chronicles. Dylan has a brilliant way of looking at something and shifting perspective. Quite a few times I was left thinking, “Now that’s a unique way to think about that.”
Happy I read Chronicles (Volume One) and hoping for Chronicles (Volume Two).