Bob Dylan: “People’s lives today are filled with vice and the trappings of it. …Sooner or later, you have to see through it or you don’t survive.”
Bob Dylan just released a new album, Shadows in the Night, containing 10 familiar standards from the 1920s to the 1960s. His one and only interview to promote the album is with AARP of all places. The interviewer mentioned that “there’s no longer much resistance in romance,” and asked whether young people would find the old-fashioned love songs on this album to be corny. Dylan replied with this:
“I don’t know why they would, but what’s the word “corny” mean exactly? These songs are songs of great virtue. That’s what they are. People’s lives today are filled with vice and the trappings of it. Ambition, greed and selfishness all have to do with vice. Sooner or later, you have to see through it or you don’t survive. We don’t see the people that vice destroys. We just see the glamour of it — everywhere we look, from billboard signs to movies, to newspapers, to magazines. We see the destruction of human life. These songs are anything but that.”
“If I had to do it all over again, I’d be a schoolteacher–probably teach Roman history or theology.”
“I’ve always been drawn to spiritual songs. In ‘Amazing Grace,’ that line — ‘that saved a wretch like me ’— isn’t that something we could all say if we were honest enough?”
You can read the whole AARP interview here.