On tour with America's beloved bard
Offering a close-up and visceral view of one of America's finest contemporary poets, Larry "Ratso" Sloman's On the Road with Bob Dylan, a behind-the-scenes look at Dylan's Rolling Thunder Revue tour of 1975, is a fascinating portrait of the man who once advised, "Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them." Luckily for Dylan, Sloman took note of all the happenings during the unforgettable tour that took place in support of the multi-platinum album Desire. Originally published in 1978, his book is being reissued this month with new photographs and a new foreword by Kinky Friedman.
In the whirlwind of that hectic time, Dylan's days were packed with commotion. Surrounding him were talented musicians like Joan Baez, Robbie Robertson and Joni Mitchell, as well as the poet Allen Ginsberg. He was involved in efforts to free Reuben "Hurricane" Carter, the legendary boxer wrongly imprisoned for murder, whom he championed in the song "Hurricane." And he followed a demanding tour schedule. "A lot of people can't stand touring," Dylan said of his traveling days, "but to me it's like breathing. I do it because I'm driven to do it."
An intense portrayal of the man who has defined and redefined rock-and-roll for nearly four decades, On the Road with Bob Dylan is required reading for any fan. From the music to the groupies, the book captures the aura of an era. Anyone can go see him in concert, but very few have the chance to actually know the musician. Thanks to Sloman's book, readers can come pretty darned close.