Muddy Bottom Blues
Program #41 (July 17 at 8:00PM)
Bob Dylan started his career in the early 1960s with songs that defined social issues such as the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement. During this time the rebellion against mainstream society was rising amongst the youth as they adopted alternative lifestyles as a way of achieving self-transformation.
Through his songs, Dylan challenged the accepted beliefs of American society, focusing on the feelings of individuals rather than entire social groups. This led him to become known as the unofficial spokesperson for the counter-culture movement of the 1960’s and many young people looked up to him for their ideas concerning social ideas.
Bob Dylan was born in Minnesota in 1941. While attending the University of Minneapolis in 1959, he joined the on campus folk scene during the time when awareness of political and sexual freedoms increased among students. Two years later, Dylan moved to Greenwich Village in New York where he played local gigs before getting signed by Columbia records in October of 1961.
In 1962, Dylan began to use his music in order to show the experiences of injustice within American society. These political protest songs drew attention to a specific incident or a political issue. As politicians continued to send more and more troops to Vietnam, Americans began to question the involvement of the United States and expressed their disapproval openly.
The songs of Bob Dylan during the 1960s represented the concerns and ideas of the rebellious youth counterculture that were dealing with issues like the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement. His lyrics came right out of the song with a really deep message for the audience to think about. Unlike other folk singers of his time like Woody Guthrie and Joan Baez, Dylan sold his lyrics outside the normal folk audience and reached the mass teen audience.
The generation of youth began to see the signs of racism and all of the hatred and violence within society. They created alternative lifestyles in order to promote a peaceful change within society. The music of Bob Dylan appealed to them because he openly expresses his disapproval of the American political and social system in order to encourage his audience to move in a direction for change.