By Marisa L. Johnson-Strickland The story of a hipster kitchen island and the life and work of a jazz musician in Greenwich Village and beyond.
By Marisa K. StricklandAs a teenager in the early 1960s, Bob Dylan was living with a roommate and friends on the Upper West Side.
It was an environment that Dylan describes as “the most fun place in the world,” where “everyone had an opinion.”
Dylan had just released his second album, I Shall Be Released, and had begun a new relationship with a woman who he describes as his “spiritual guide.”
“She would give me a guitar and a bass and tell me how to play the guitar and I’d play with her,” Dylan told Salon.
“I was so into jazz, so I wanted to be like her.”
Dylan’s friend, George Harrison, was also living in Greenwich.
“We had an amazing time,” Dylan says.
“It was an absolute blast.”
But after they returned to Manhattan, Harrison discovered he had a severe case of syphilis, which forced him to live with his family in his mother’s apartment.
In 1968, Dylan left his apartment and went to live at a friend’s apartment, where he spent the next year living out of his van and working as a bartender.
When Dylan was 19, he decided to move to New York to play in the rock band the Byrds.
Dylan was an incredible improviser, able to sing like a symphony conductor and produce soundtracks that would be considered a hit at the time.
But as Dylan began touring the country, he found himself losing money on shows, and soon lost the confidence he’d once had.
“The money was getting less and less,” he says.
“I was just starting to lose my voice, and it wasn’t working out,” he explains.
“Then, I remember looking at the ceiling and thinking, This is it.
This is the end.
And I started to think, What am I doing here?
And then I got a job in New York, and that was it.
I just lost it.
It didn’t seem to matter what I was doing.
I wasn’t playing anything that was going to make me happy.”
Doe remembers playing gigs with the Byrd and the band’s manager, Robert Briscoe, at the Capitol Theatre.
“Briscoe was the first manager I ever had,” he recalls.
“He was an incredibly nice, smart guy.
He was like a father figure to me.
I’d do anything for him.”
Dyke was working on the side as a tour manager for Briscoes touring company, but after Briscoefe’s death in 1988, Dylan became the only one who continued working with him.
“That was the beginning of the end of my relationship with him,” Dylan explains.
Dylan had worked with Briscoecks bandmates, including John Mayer and Neil Young, in his last major gig.
He began working with Dylan in the studio, where the two worked on the Byrde-Young album, which would go on to be released in 1989 and a landmark in the evolution of jazz.
Dylan’s early work with Briscos band, which included such hits as “The River and the Mountain,” was considered groundbreaking in the history of jazz and rock music.
But the Byrdes didn’t always agree with Dylan on the music he wrote, and he struggled with the creative process.
Dylan had become a prolific songwriter and composer by the time he was working with Brissels group.
“Bob wanted to make music like that because he loved it,” Dylan recalls.
But Dylan, who was a vocalist, couldn’t make the songs he wanted to, so he had to rely on his friends to do it for him.
“Bob was a big part of that because they were his confidants,” Dylan adds.
“They would come in with ideas that Bob didn’t want to write.”
Dynas’ most famous collaboration was “My Old Lady” with the singer George Harrison.
Dylan wrote the song to accompany Harrison’s 1977 album of the same name.
It featured the line “I wish I was a little bit old/Like a lot of people/But I’m a big old soul.”
“The first time I heard it,” he remembers, “I thought, Oh my God, I can’t believe this guy is talking about my old lady.
It’s like, What’s he talking about?”
The album hit the top 10 on the Billboard charts, and the song was featured on the cover of Rolling Stone.
Dylan told Rolling Stone that he was amazed at the way the song resonated with listeners.
“In a way, I think it’s the biggest single I’ve ever written,” he said.
“Even though it didn’t have the biggest impact on the charts, it still was the biggest, and you know what? I