When Bob Dylan made concert promoters quit the "Folk Poet of Our Times" hype

Originally published at: When Bob Dylan made concert promoters quit the "Folk Poet of Our Times" hype | Boing Boing


as a gen X kid, the first time I read this type of accolade for Dylan was in Cecil Adams’ column The Straight Dope. I was very young and was only vaguely aware of Dylan when I read the column, which I searched for just now but it hasn’t been transcribed to the internet. anyway, a reader wrote in a question about him and in Adams’ reply, in his first reference to him, he didn’t write Dylan or Bob, he referred to him as “The Poet Of Our Generation.” just like that, capitalized.

given the emphasis, and Adams’ propensity for vicious sarcasm, ten-year-old me was easily able to infer that the phrase was considered hackneyed, and the type of thing that a marketing department would come up with.

with this post, I see just how bad it was. no wonder Dylan took steps to curtail such awfulness as soon as he could.


He’s thought to be the “jester” in the lyrics of American Pie.

He does not see this as a complement.


I don’t think Dylan is too upset about an insult from Don McLean.

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From This is Why Bob Dylan is the “Jester” in Don McLean’s “American Pie” - American Songwriter

“Yeah, Don McLean, ‘American Pie,’ what a song that is. A jester? Sure, the jester writes songs like ‘Masters of War,’ ‘A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall,’ ‘It’s Alright, Ma’ — some jester. I have to think he’s talking about somebody else. Ask him.”

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