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the pioneer of Dylan Studies; writer, public speaker, critic; became a Doctor of Letters in 2015 (awarded by the University of York, UK)

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Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Continuum is to publish the first paperback edition of my Bob Dylan Encyclopedia on April 15, in both London and New York. The text has been updated both by a series of entirely new entries and by significant amendments to many of the entries featured in the hardback.

The paperback is therefore up-to-date through to mid-January 2008, and the hardback's 750,000 words have now expanded, giving many additional pages, plus minor corrections and an improved index.

In order for the paperback to sell at a lower price than the hardback, this edition cannot include a CD-Rom. (The cost here is not in manufacture but in fixing the disc to the book, which has to be done by hand.)

But new additional entries include:

Blues [2006]
Bob Dylan: The Collection [2006]
Bob Dylan: The Drawn Blank Series [2007]
Carthy, Martin [1941 - ]
Dennis-Dylan, Desiree [1986 - ]
Dylan [2007]
Dylan, last solo concert by [1965]
Haynes, Todd [1961 - ]
I’m Not There [film, 2007]
Lerner, Murray [192? - ]
Man Without Papers, The [TV drama, 1965]
Modern Times [2006]
Other Side Of The Mirror, The [film, 2007]
Paradise Cove [film, 1999]
Ronson, Mark [1975 - ]
65 Revisited [film, 2006]
21st Century Dylan songs written for films
White, Jack [1975 - ]

Entries updated include:

Alk, Howard
Alvin, Dave
‘Am I Your Stepchild?’
American Civil War in World Gone Wrong, the
Animals, the
Aufray, Hugues
Ball, Gordon
Barker, Derek & Tracy
Berry, Chuck
Betts, Dickey
'Blowin’ In the Wind'
blues, external signals of Dylan’s interest in
Bob Dylan Greatest Hits
Bob Dylan Greatest Hits Vol. II
Bootleg Series Vol.5
Bridge, The
Bringing It All Back Home

Brown, Richard Rabbit
‘Brownsville Girl’
Bruce, Jack
Bruton, Stephen
Campbell, Larry
Campbell, Mike
Carmichael, Hoagy
Charles, Larry
Chronicles Volume One
Clancy Brothers & Tommy Makem
Clapton, Eric
Cohen, John
co-option of real music by advertising, the
Cross, Billy
Dennis, Carolyn
Diaz, Cesar
Domino, Fats
Don’t Look Back
Drawn Blank [1994]
Dunn, Tim
Dylan [1973]
earliest extant recordings, Dylan’s
Elliott, Ramblin’ Jack
Epstein, Howie
Estes, Sleepy John
folk music, American, black
Freeman, Denny
Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, The: withdrawn early version
Fremerman, Elana
Fuller, Blind Boy
Garnier, Tony
Gleason, Ralph J.
Goldberg, Barry
Goldstein, Harvey
Grateful Dead, the
‘The Groom’s Still Waiting at the Altar’
guitars, Bob Dylan’s acoustic
Guthrie, Woody
Haggard, Merle
Hammond, John
Hammond, John Jr.
Harrison, George
Helm, Levon
Hendrix, Jimi
Herdman, John
Herron, Donnie
Hibbing rock’n’rollers
Highway 61 Revisited
Hinton, Nigel
Horowitz, David
Howlin’ Wolf
Humphries, Patrick
Hunter, Robert
Ian & Sylvia
‘In Search of Little Sadie’/‘Little Sadie’
Jackson, John
James, Elana
Jean, Wyclef
Johnnie & Jack
Jones, Mickey
Jones, Norah
Kalb, Danny
Kegan, Larry
Kershaw, Doug
Kimball, Stuary
King, Clydie
Kooper, Al
Kramer, Daniel
Kweskin, Jim
LaFarge, Pete
Lesh, Phil
Levy, Dan
Lightfoot, Gordon
Lightnin’ Hopkins
'Like A Rolling Stone'
Lomax, Alan
‘Love Henry’
McTell, Blind Willie
Madhouse On Castle Street, The
Marcus, Greil
Marsalis, Wynton
Mayall, John
Maymudes, Victor [1935 - 2001]
Memphis Minnie
Meyers, Augie
Mitchell, Joni
Muddy Waters
Muir, Andrew
Muldaur, Maria
Murphy, Elliott
musical accompanists to Dylan, other
Nelson, Paul
Neville, Aaron
nursery rhyme on Under the Red Sky
Pagel, Bill
Pennebaker, D.A.
‘People Get Ready’
Petty, Tom
Presley, Elvis
Poe, Edgar Allan
Quintana, Charlie
Raney, Wayne
Ray, Dave
Receli, George
Richards, Keith
Ricks, Christopher
Rimbaud, Arthur
Rinzler, Ralph
Rivera, Scarlet
Rosen, Jeff
Rotolo, Suze
Sahm, Doug
Savakus, Russ
Scaduto, Anthony
Schatzberg, Jerry
Scheff, Jerry
Sedgwick, Edie
Self Portrait
Sexton, Charlie
Sinatra, Frank
Smith, Warren
Spoelstra, Mark
Springs, Helena
Stanley Brothers, the
Stanley, Ralph
Stewart, Dave
‘Tangled Up In Blue’
Taylor, Mick
Tedeschi, David
Tench, Benmont
Time Out Of Mind
Thompson, Toby

And for new blog readers, here's a round-up of what the press said about The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia in hardback:

“Michael Gray’s book [is] probably the most comprehensive work on the subject, and also one of the most entertaining. The scale of research is colossal.” The Guardian

“This massive effort…is an amazingly well-researched and surprisingly readable work.” Library Journal

“This is no mere catalog of facts, but a work of oceanic immersion. It has wit, opinion, style and asks to be read, not just consulted.” Village Voice

“Michael Gray… outdistances them all with this voluminous collection.” Publisher’s Weekly

“Michael Gray… is arguably the pre-eminent Dylan scholar - enviably knowledgeable, scabrously tart … [his] irreverence is one of the joys of The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia.” Sunday Herald

“an authoritative reference tome...Gray’s critical powers remain top rank… and it will be well nigh impossible for you to ever just dip in and read only one entry.” Guitar and Bass Magazine

“The book thrives on unexpected connections and little-known facts… Gray’s passionate subjectivity mirrors his subject’s wholly idiosyncratic journey through life, as well as the complexities and contradictions that make Dylan who he is… Gray’s approach is characterized by a mixture of undiluted opinion and genuine fairness…There is an endearingly spontaneous feel about the book, unusual for something so rich and weighty.” Times Literary Supplement

“There is always room for a volume as utterly brilliant as Michael Gray’s Bob Dylan Encyclopedia… for everyone from the most hardened Bobcat to the general music lover. Strikingly intelligent, poetic, subtly humorous and buzzing with an awareness of the richness of life, he’s the perfect match for his subject.” What’s On in London

“Thoroughly researched and highly idiosyncratic, The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia is a fascinating reference - with essential information and cool arcana.” Rolling Stone

“It stands comparison with David Thomson’s Biographical Dictionary of Cinema as a sustained piece of entertaining opinionated heartfelt and argumentative writing masquerading as an objective gazetteer… the book is thronged with life.” London Evening Standard

“It catalogs virtually anybody and anything with at least a peripheral connection to Dylan… it is astonishingly complete.” Sing Out!

The Encylopedia majors on its author’s unparalleled expertise, his critical judgment and a ready intelligence and authorial finesse…in three quarters of a million words, he paints a massive canvas. Over 730 pages, its daunting breadth of coverage and sheer level of detail is deeply impressive… destined to be the most important Bob Dylan book, bar none.” The Dylan Daily

“This is a book to fall in love with.” Daily Telegraph

“the culminating achievement of a world authority on the topic.” California Bookwatch

“Erudite, idiosyncratic, witty and caustic, like its subject.” Goldmine

“An encyclopedia of American music that plays ‘6 degrees of separation from Bob Dylan,’ with extensive, perceptive, thoughtful analysis and commentary on each entry, not just as they relate to Bob, but where each stands in its own right. The book offers some of the keenest, most carefully researched information and commentary on each person, place or thing as is likely to be found in succinct form.” Victory Review

“Michael Gray’s magisterial book The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia… analyses Dylan’s life, music, cultural relevance and legacy with style, humour and authority. A must-buy for any music or Dylan fan with any interest in the last half-century.” GQ

“A hugely impressive, meticulously detailed work, it joins an exclusive club of the handful of very best books about Bob Dylan… Comprehensive and concise… The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia is Michael Gray’s second critical masterpiece.” The Bridge

The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia won’t just astonish readers with its detail about Dylan’s work. It contains so many insights and refutes so many myths about the rock’n’roll era in general that it’s invaluable as both a reference guide and personality study… magnificent.” City Paper, Nashville

“Sound and shrewd…lucid and - of course - immensely well informed.” The Sunday Times


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael, it would be good if you could sell the CD to the new edition separately from this website, for those with proof of purchase of the new edition. I for one would be happy to pay an extra say $10 for it. Being able to search for items was a great feature of the last CD.

6:17 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey Michael !
Just read a big part of the encyclopedia which was very useful for me 'cause i'm writing a ten pages articel about Dylan. it's for a litterature critic oriented on line site. this issue is about Rock and litterature. i chose to write about Dylan's lyrics chnges by the time he went electric, and how much litterature characters are quoted in those lyrics.
If you read french, i would like you very much too read it to give me a critic feedback.
let me know if you have time for that..

thanks a lot !


PS: I live in Bruxelles but come from southwest of france...where are you moving to ? i come from Charente Maritime.

12:48 am  
Blogger Michael Gray said...

Dear 1st Anonymous
That's a very beguiling idea: I'll talk to my publisher about it and keep you posted. Meanwhile, thank you.

4:28 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Re. Gordon Lightfoot, there is a good picture of him & Dylan together on this website:

Have been listening to his music a lot recently - he is a far, far better songwriter than he has been given credit for..

His best songs will still be around when that of many more fashionable artists will be long forgotten

6:11 am  

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