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Bob Dylan and His Impact on Society

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Bob Dylan, a well-known, well-deserved singer-songwriter that most people know for their entire lifetime, is a global influencer that I am most admired. He was born with the name Robert Allen Zimmerman on May 24, 1941, in Duluth, Minnesota. Up until now, with many experience years working in the industry, Bod Dylan has received many honors and awards such as Grammy (1973, 1980, 1990, 1995, 1998), Academy and Golden Globe awards (2000), Presidential Medal of Freedom (2012), and Nobel Prize for Literature (2016).

With the inspiration from The Beatles, Little Richard, Elvis Presley, Woody Guthrie, Roy Orbison, and Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan defined his tastes of music in folks, blues, rock & roll, and many more. From there, he built a strong fundamental knowledge and started composing songs with his guitar since early start. His talent was exceptional that he even dropped out of college after a year of studying. From there, he began his journey of becoming his own legendary. Dylan signed his very first contract with a record company in Columbia in 1961 and dropped out his single album Bod Dylan (1962).

Many of his songs are phenomenal and extraordinary that still have a significant affect to our society nowadays such as The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, Blowin’ In the Wind, The Times They are Changing. During the Civil Right Movements and anti – Vietnam War, these are the unofficial anthems that represented the voices of civilizations and global culture activists. Bob Dylan was one of the greatest influencers at the time – and until this day, he is still a true artist in the industry. As we can observe, he was inspired by his favorite folk singer – Woody Guthrie, whom was hospitalized with a rare hereditary disease of the nervous system called Huntington disease. When Woody was sick, Bob dropped out of college and came to New York City just to visit him and became his friend in the coffeehouse’s club.

“Guthrie was my last idol” – Dylan said. “My future idol will be myself.” Those words certainly made our champ accomplished many things in life: successful, self- esteem, and commitment. From a rock-and-roll player in high school, a folk music player in college to a professional artist, he developed himself in many different aspects and represented his own image to the world. And his hard-working were being paid; Bob Dylan, became the leader in the music field of all time. Therefore, he is our generation’s new inspiration that we should follow. With his unique voice and unforgettable lyrics, he has taken our heart and soul mixing within the world of music and poetry like no one ever did.

After many achievements from his first album, he kept striking our society with many live performances. His way of music is so unique in certain way that no one can copy it. Bob Dylan was a leader in his league, with an open-minded he has, he slayed the folk-rock music genre in the last three decades. In 1965, Bob Dylan recorded the half acoustic- half electric album Bringing It All Back Home, featured by a nine-piece band. In the same year, the Bob Dylan’s wave became stronger after he performed at the Newport Folk Festival for the first time. The heat of the name Bod Dylan never decreased, as he was a legendary at that time.

In 1966, Dylan got into a noxious motorcycle accident that gave him almost a year to recover. However, he did not sleep on his victory forever. He brought back his talent and dropped out two new albums called John Wesley Harding (1967) and Nashville Skyline (1969). Dylan also involved in movie acting field, where he appeared as a cameo in Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, directed by Sam Peckinpah. As a present to the movie, he composed the film soundtrack “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” and gained ‘No.1 hit song’ at the time being.

Not to mention about his religion, Bob Dylan was half Jewish, but he never denied nor admitted it. He did not keep it silence in his faith to Jesus, by bringing the love of God into his music. Although he is being raised as a Jew, Dylan found his new belief in Christianity and fell in love with gospel music. His dedication soon appeared to be “born-again” in the three albums: Slow Train Coming, Saved, and Shot of Love (1979).

“Dylan created so many images and expectations that he narrowed his room for maneuverability and finally became unsure of his own instincts.” – Jann Wenner explained his view of Bod Dylan’s period in Rolling Stone.

Even though Bob Dylan is a famous name in the 1960s, he is still active and well-known in the 21st century. Counting to the present, Dylan has won 11 Grammy awards, with the most recent one is Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance ‘Someday Baby’ in 2007. In May 2012, he received the highest civilian award of the United States – the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Nobel Prize in Literature (2016) for ‘having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition’. Beside from these awards, Dylan is also recognized as one of the most global influential singer-performers of all time. Also, the name Bob Dylan had officially honored on The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

There is undoubting that Dylan’s contribution to our society is beautiful, and he colored our world in the shape of music. He spoke for the Earth, for the new young generation, for the old times that we had forgot, and he enriched our times with his art collection. I am blessed to see that such individual devoted himself to build a new world, to change most of the culture and bring us all together with music only. Not only did he affect the people’s perception, but he also innovates the diversity recognition. Over the three decades, Dylan ‘reinvented himself from an acoustic/folk artist to electric/ acoustic singer’.

My all-time favorite songs from Bob Dylan are endless, proving that his song is immortal to eternity and will always living in our heart. He is such a talent artist that inspired us to chase our dream and revolutionized the institution. “Jesus put his hand on me,” he said, “It was a physical thing. I felt it. I felt it all over me. I felt my whole-body tremble. The glory of the Lord knocked me down and picked me up.” Such emotional feeling that he had but he can share that to us, the child’s God.  

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