Friday, June 26, 2015

Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues

Bob goes to New York.
He might make it there, but he
Makes it nowhere else.

"Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" comes from the 1965 album "Highway 61 Revisited." It is one of Dylan's greatest songs. The runaway imagery that often obscures the diamond clarity of his songs is kept to a manageable level. The fractured narrative from verse to verse that can turn a song into a pond disturbed by ripples from a rock here makes a series of related if discrete episodes. The music rolls along with resignation, but it's punchy instead of bloated. The saloon piano sound is a standout for me. There are more good qualities, but you might as well just listen to it and admire.

1. Lost in the rain in Ciudad Juarez on Easter Sunday. No gravity, etc. Suddenly on Rue Morgue Avenue with hungry, aggressive women. 
2. Saint Annie: Tell her thanks. I can't move. Doc doesn't know what's wrong with me.
3. Melinda: Goddess of gloom. Also a prostitute.
4. Housing Project Hill choices: fortune or fame. It's a trick. By the way, you should leave if you want to get silly. The cops don't need your trouble.
5. Boasting authorities who blackmailed the sergeant-at-arms. Then there's the story of Angel who showed up from Los Angeles and didn't take well to New York.
6. Round one: burgundy. Round two: harder chaser. Game got rough. Joke was on me. I couldn't handle it. Heading back to New York City.



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