Showing posts with label Bob Dylan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bob Dylan. Show all posts

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Don’t You Dare Go Gentle

He’s so unhip that when you say ‘Dylan’, he thinks you’re talking about Dylan Thomas, whoever he was. The man ain’t got no culture.
Simon and Garfunkel
“A Simple Desultory Philippic (Or How I Was Robert McNamara’d Into Submission)” 

While “Rhymin’ Simon” was likely referencing British poet Dylan Thomas with a tongue-in-cheek approach, the snarky aside nevertheless addressed a cultural divide between the Sixties counterculture and their literary forbearers in the previous era.

Thomas, born in Swansea, Wales in 1914, became an early admirer of the work of Yeats and Poe and soon ascended to national attention himself while still in his youth. He would eventually garner world acclaim as one of the premiere poets of the English-speaking world, broadcasting for the BBC as a means of supporting himself and later recording his own works for a series of record albums in the U.S.

In 1934 he published his first book 18 Poems during which time his work took on its characteristic style highlighting romantic imagery and aesthetic rhythmic style. The “images” he created, particularly ripe with conflict and contradiction, were evident in his best known work including “And death shall have no dominion” and “Do not go gentle into that good night.”

After working on a number of screenplays and several tours of America, Thomas passed away in 1953. His hard-drinking ‘Dionysian’ image which fell him has since influenced everyone from Charles Bukowski to Jim Morrison of the Doors.

Like many of my own generation, my primary reference point regarding Thomas would (regrettably) be the recitation of his most renowned work by Rodney Dangerfield in the hit movie, Back to School where the comedy legend learns the poem to get through a mandatory exam. That should be satisfactory enough for most, however, considering the Minnesota folk-rocker who adopted Thomas’s name and rode it to stardom himself apparently didn’t even know how it was pronounced at first.

That all goes to show that the cyclical nature of art and communication for that matter can be irrelevant in its details. The proliferation of what we experience through words, images, juxtapositions and patterns are what we pass on and remember— when all is said and done.

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Christopher Robinson, Writer Extraordinaire (image)
Christopher Robinson, Writer Extraordinaire 

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Peace, Love, Lodging

Passing through Route 28 in upstate New York? A visit to the delightful Hotel Dylan might be a highlight of your road trip, particularly for a lover of music and art. Situated at the base of Overlook Mountain in Woodstock, Hotel Dylan is a nod to the culture, music, lifestyle and artistry of a generation including a music legend who once lived in the prominent town and artists colony.

Incidentally, it’s a stone’s throw from the site of the legendary 1969 rock festival whose musical heroes are given their own eleven thematic rooms in the hotel (now expanded to 22). Named primarily for subjects of acclaimed festival photographs hanging in each room, they include; The Baez, The Jimi, The Sebastian, The Havens, The Joplin, The Slick and The Levon (Parents will have to explain it all to their kids).

Though having undergone considerable renovations and reconstruction since being built in 1966, the building was once a landmark inn, attracting a variety of famous musicians. At one point, it even saw existence as a brothel.

Opened in 2013, Hotel Dylan was the joint venture of four individuals, each focusing on different angles of the business. Among the four is Darryl Jack, a pro golfer whose extensive experience in the hospitality industry led him to also act as the hotel’s resident manager.

Hungry? The hotel’s own Santa Fe Woodstock restaurant and bar features fine Mexican cuisine and along the outside lawn guests can enjoy fire pits and a heated saltwater pool. Hiking and skiing in the Catskills are just two of the activities that guests have convenient access to.

Not to be confused with NYC’s Dylan Hotel, Hotel Dylan in Woodstock, NY should greatly satisfy the ‘Bohemian’ curiosity and provide a unique and rewarding boutique hotel experience for all visitors. Why not walk right in and sit right down?

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Christopher Robinson