The Lyrics of Bob Dylan
Sometimes they're vicious, excoriating personal attacks; sometimes they're heartwarming, elegant love paeans; they're at once richly lyrical yet viscerally 'street'; occasionally, they voice dissent and protest. Once in a while, they veer into multi-layered allegory and symbolism; and for a short period proselytised that Jesus Christ is our saviour.
Music critic Laura Barton attempts to decode the lyrics of perhaps rock's greatest ever singer-songwriter by exploring and analysing ten songs from the perspective of poets, critics, musicians and contemporaries.
Joining Laura in her quest to examine the works, are Poet Laureate Andrew Motion; Professor Christopher Ricks, author of 'Dylan's Vision of Sin'; Nigel Williamson, author of 'The Rough Guide to Bob Dylan'; Dylanologist Muchael Gray; Greenwich Village contemporary Tom Paxton; Singer Gwyneth Herbert; Cultural Commentator David Quantick; Pete Shelley of Buzzcocks, and Mark Rudd of revolutionary political agitators The Weathermen.
The programme coincides with Dylan's UK tour dates and celebrates 50 years of Bob Dylan recordings.
The ten scrutinised songs are:
Subterranean Homesick Blues
Like A Rolling Stone
A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall
Lay Lady Lay
Tangled Up In Blue
Visions Of Johanna
All Along The Watchtower
Gotta Serve Somebody
It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding).