Report by Tony Attwood, based on press releases
The Bob Dylan Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma will open on May 10, 2022, and details have been released as to what can be expected from the facility.
Those behind the project are avoiding the word “museum,” and instead are suggesting that it will be the “ultimate repository of Dylan artifacts”. Overall it is said that there will be more than 100,000 “exclusive culture treasures” to be seen, including previously unseen or unheard recordings, filmed performances, photographs, lyric manuscripts and visual art.
As part of the preliminary publicity what is said to be the first ever recording of “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right” has now been released – just click on the link above. It is said that it has previously not been made available, and dates from 1962. It was apparently recorded in the New York apartment of Mell and Lillian Bailey.
Bob already has his trademark finger plucking style, plus the way he drops the last word of the last two lines of the song. Oh yes and “like you never done before” is more grammatically correct, being rendered as “like you never did before.”
The non-museum will be in Tulsa’s arts district near the Woody Guthrie Center and the design is being worked on by 59 Productions who also worked on “David Bowie Is”.
Among the elements highlighted at the announcement of the project are an introductory “immersive film experience,” directed by Jennifer Lebeau; a screening room offering documentaries and concert performances, some previously unreleased; a facsimile recording studio, “where visitors will experience what it was like to be present at one of Dylan’s historic recording sessions”; a multimedia timeline covering Dylan’s entire life; a changing, curated display of artifacts housed within the archive; and a section of the museum dubbed the Columbia Records Gallery which will be devoted to deep dives into some of his most revered songs.
So, a bit like a physical version of Untold Dylan, but with fewer words!
Besides the previously unheard version of “Don’t Think Twice,” the Dylan Center has also released what they say is a newly discovered photograph of Dylan on stage when he toured with the Band, shot in 1974 by Barry Feinstein. I’m hesitant about reproducing it as it comes with a very clear copyright notice – sorry about that.
Also at the centre, we are told, is a three-story tall image of Dylan taken in 1965, taken from a photo by Jerry Schatzberg.
You can become a founder member of the BobDylanCentre by visiting their website. As a bonus you’ll also get lifetime memberships in the Guthrie Center.
And of course in case you can’t get there, we have our own museum of articles, including the series: Play lady play in which we have collected together some of the prime selections of renditions of Dylan songs by female performers.