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 Post subject: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 07:04 GMT 
best dylan song?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 08:28 GMT 

Joined: Mon November 29th, 2004, 09:11 GMT
Posts: 90
definitely a great song! i believe it's part of the dialogue between dylan and john lennon (i still have no clue what they're saying to each other.. rocky raccoon is another part). its chords are based on "norwegian wood" by john lennon. so not only is it a great song, but it has so many levels on which you can interpret it.

this always makes me smile-

So I forced my hands in my pockets
And felt with my thumbs,
And gallantly handed her
My very last piece of gum.

and i think the part i like best is the end.

what are some of your favorite things about it, lyrics-wise, music-wise...?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 09:28 GMT 

Joined: Sun December 12th, 2004, 09:01 GMT
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Location: Dresden, Germany
One of my favorite Dylan songs melody-wise. It's hypnotic and draws you right in. I think it also has a chamber-music, kind of baroque feel to it. I'd love to hear this one done in a small string based arrangement.


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PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 10:03 GMT 
[quote] "i believe it's part of the dialogue between dylan and john lennon (i still have no clue what they're saying to each other.. rocky raccoon is another part)."

I dont think rocky raccoon is another part - it was written by paul mccartney. Also, John Lennon did not know what dylan was on about either. He thought he might have been saying something to him in the lines-

And I, I never took much,
I never asked for your crutch.
Now don't ask for mine.

but he did not know what.


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 Post subject: Dylan/Lennon
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 11:58 GMT 
I remember reading in an interview with John Lennon that the Beatle admitted he was very freaked out by 4th Time and it made him extremely paranoid about meeting with Dylan in England. This may have resulted in the famous limo ride exchange (Eat The Document).
I think it was in the last Playboy interview that was released right around the time of his death.
Anyway, Lennon wrote "Gotta Serve Yourself" in response to"Gotta Serve Somebody." It was widely bottlegged and later surfaced on Lennon's box set.
I used to love it when good songwriters used to respond to each other in their work. It happened frequently in the 60s and 70s. You don't see it much anymore.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 13:16 GMT 

Joined: Mon November 29th, 2004, 09:11 GMT
Posts: 90
lord clancy wrote:
Quote:
"i believe it's part of the dialogue between dylan and john lennon (i still have no clue what they're saying to each other.. rocky raccoon is another part)."

I dont think rocky raccoon is another part - it was written by paul mccartney.


good point.

here's a site that discusses rocky raccoon as a "tribute" to dylan:

http://www.morethings.com/music/beatles ... ccoon.html

it brings up some interesting points. i'm not sure what to think.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu December 16th, 2004, 15:12 GMT 
Im not sure what to make of that. Macca wrote that song in India, round the time Donovan was showing the Beatles the 'finger-pickin' style of playing guitar. (used on Dont think twice). Lennon wrote Dear Prudence and Julia and other things, while Macca wrote Blackbird, I will, Raccoon etc.

So it may be possible Macca was thinking of Bob Dylan's acoustic style at the time.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri December 17th, 2004, 03:21 GMT 

Joined: Mon December 6th, 2004, 01:21 GMT
Posts: 61
its so weird i heard that song so many times without gettin the full meanin i would just be pickin out words until it all came together...its a great story really


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat December 18th, 2004, 06:14 GMT 
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The lyrics suck, though. You could tell he didn't work at them at all.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon January 3rd, 2005, 21:45 GMT 

Joined: Wed December 29th, 2004, 23:12 GMT
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Location: London UK
I thought bob said this was his and Lennon nicked it. I can't lay my hands on where I read this but it makes far more sense. I hate it when people put the beatles in the same class as bob, I mean, why?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon January 3rd, 2005, 23:03 GMT 
andyjk70 wrote:
I hate it when people put the beatles in the same class as bob, I mean, why?


Maybe because The Beatles had just as big an impact on their generation as Bob did. Trying to compare the two is like trying to compare apples to oranges. You just can't do it. However, I will never have a problem mentioning the Beatles and Bob Dylan in the same breath.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue January 4th, 2005, 01:52 GMT 

Joined: Mon November 29th, 2004, 09:11 GMT
Posts: 90
andyjk70 wrote:
I thought bob said this was his and Lennon nicked it. I can't lay my hands on where I read this but it makes far more sense. I hate it when people put the beatles in the same class as bob, I mean, why?


1965 Dec Beatles: Rubber Soul "Norwegian Wood"
1966 May Dylan: Blonde on Blonde "4th Time Around"

I'm pretty sure Dylan admitted to basing it on Norwegian Wood. Lennon was furious, he thought Dylan "stole" his song, whereas he was just making a statement of some sort. It's not necessarily conclusive that Norwegian Wood was released first, but it helps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue January 4th, 2005, 15:19 GMT 

Joined: Wed December 29th, 2004, 23:12 GMT
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Location: London UK
sarah wrote:
andyjk70 wrote:
I thought bob said this was his and Lennon nicked it. I can't lay my hands on where I read this but it makes far more sense. I hate it when people put the beatles in the same class as bob, I mean, why?


1965 Dec Beatles: Rubber Soul "Norwegian Wood"
1966 May Dylan: Blonde on Blonde "4th Time Around"

I'm pretty sure Dylan admitted to basing it on Norwegian Wood. Lennon was furious, he thought Dylan "stole" his song, whereas he was just making a statement of some sort. It's not necessarily conclusive that Norwegian Wood was released first, but it helps.


Found it:

Al Kooper in Q Dylan: " I said to Dylan "it sounds so much like Norwegian wood, " and he said "actually Norwegian wood sounds a lot like this! I'm afraid they took it from me and now I feel like I have to record it y'know." Apparently he'd played it for them and they'd nicked it. I asked if he was worried about getting sued and he said, "nah, the beatles could never sue me." p.72.

Elsewhere in the issue it says the song was titled 4th time around because Bob was miffed at the 3 previous occasions Lennon had been influenced by him, including Norwegian wood!

I'm willing to accept that Q Dylan might not be the most reliable source, so if anyone has the Kooper source used for this article I'd be interested to hear about it. Personally I find this version of history slightly more believable, and that has nothing to do with my extreme anti Lennon bias, honest.

Andy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue January 4th, 2005, 23:53 GMT 

Joined: Sun December 5th, 2004, 21:41 GMT
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That is the story that i've always heard dylan showed it to lennon and then rubbersoul came out with norwegian wood, and thus dylan added it to blonde on blonde. I believe that dylan was playing it on tour in 65 and 66 befor blonde oon blonde came out


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed January 5th, 2005, 08:56 GMT 

Joined: Mon November 29th, 2004, 09:11 GMT
Posts: 90
andyjk70 wrote:
Found it:

Al Kooper in Q Dylan: " I said to Dylan "it sounds so much like Norwegian wood, " and he said "actually Norwegian wood sounds a lot like this! I'm afraid they took it from me and now I feel like I have to record it y'know." Apparently he'd played it for them and they'd nicked it. I asked if he was worried about getting sued and he said, "nah, the beatles could never sue me." p.72.

Elsewhere in the issue it says the song was titled 4th time around because Bob was miffed at the 3 previous occasions Lennon had been influenced by him, including Norwegian wood!

I'm willing to accept that Q Dylan might not be the most reliable source, so if anyone has the Kooper source used for this article I'd be interested to hear about it. Personally I find this version of history slightly more believable, and that has nothing to do with my extreme anti Lennon bias, honest.

Andy


haha, I can believe that :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed January 5th, 2005, 16:39 GMT 
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I as well can believe it. The Beatles were in the right place at the right time, nothing magical about their songwriting. However, Bob on the other hand, well, can't even compare.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 01:26 GMT 
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A very nice performance at the Wembley Arena, London on October 5, 2000... Perhaps Bennyboy would be willing to provide a first hand review?


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 01:35 GMT 
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Claudette wrote:
The Beatles were in the right place at the right time, nothing magical about their songwriting.

Right, they were in fact the only rock band in the 60s. That explains it!


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 02:23 GMT 
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Beatle-haters are funny.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 02:48 GMT 
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I wonder if classical music has Bach haters.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 05:34 GMT 
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There are select things that no right-minded human should hate: the sun, water, babies, and The Beatles among them.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 05:39 GMT 
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bob had 20 attempts at recording this!!

FOURTH TIME AROUND

Robert Shelton

John Lennon thought this was a take-off on The Beatles Norwegian Wood. Dylan had played it for them in London. Lennon, who later admitted he was very paranoid, said he did not like it. Later, he described it as “great”. Dylan’s voice is the tired, old bluesman. The guitar figure repeats a rippling, romantic Mexican cadence. I asked about the Latin influence. Dylan replied, “I was hip for Tex-Mex music and to cangacero music (a Mexican pop-folk sound somewhat deeper than ranchero and mariachi music) all my life. I was in Mexico in my youth. Baby Blue and Tom Thumbs Blues is all back to that.” The lyric is runaway fantasy, almost incongruous against the soft
musical flow.

Andy Gill

A strange combination of the desultory and the surreal, Fourth Time Around describes a romantic encounter of symbolic emptiness, whose narrative, tossed this way and that by the quirky gusts of imagery, drifts along with as little volition as its protagonists' actions. At times, it seems as if Dylan is simply rhyming whatever slips into his mind, following the story rather than dictating its course, even as it slides between verses, courtesy of an outrageously elongated "He-errrr" whose length is further exaggerated by comparison with the clipped brevity of the ensuing "Jamaican rum."

Musically, the song stands apart from the rest of Blonde On Blonde by dint of its lightness and delicacy, Dylan's vocal and wistful harmonica riding the rippling Spanish arpeggios of Wayne Moss and Charlie McCoy's twin acoustic guitars. "Those guitars playing in harmony, that's pure Nashville," says Al Kooper. "People don't think like that anywhere else."

John Lennon allegedly thought the song was a parody of The Beatles' Norwegian Wood, which appeared in December 1965 on their Rubber Soul album. "I thought it was very ballsy of Dylan to do Fourth Time Around," recalls Kooper. "I asked him about it – I said, it sounds so much like Norwegian Wood, and he said, 'Well actually, Norwegian Wood sounds a lot like this. I'm afraid they took it from me, and I feel that I have to, y'know, record it.' Evidently, he’d played it for them, and they'd nicked it. I said, 'Aren't you worried about getting sued by The Beatles?' and he said, 'They couldn't sue me!' " And indeed, they did not.

Clinton Heylin

Published lyrics: Writings and Drawings; Lyrics 1985; Lyrics 2004.
Known studio recordings: Studio A, Nashville, 14 February 1966 - 20 takes [BOB – tk.20].
First known performance: Hempstead, NY, 26 February 1966.

The first week of December 1965 saw The Beatles release their finest collection to date, Rubber Soul. Though the United States edition was again pruned of several songs on the British original, one song that stayed the course had a largely Lennon lyric. Originally known as This Bird Has Flown, it was released as Norwegian Wood. The song was an important one to Lennon (he later said of it, “I was trying to be sophisticated in writing about an affair. But in such a smokescreen way that you couldn't tell”). For the first time he was writing about something deeply personal – his clandestine affair with attractive journalist Maureen Cleave, whom Dylan also knew – using the kind of code the American had made something of a trademark.

Dylan undoubtedly recognized the influence and decided at some point to acknowledge it with his own version of “This Bird Has Flown.” For the past 18 months he had enjoyed dropping in the occasional lyrical nod with a wink to his new-found friends – a gesture they reciprocated on With A Little Help From My Friends in 1967. But Fourth Time Around was also a way of showing he could raise the bar lyrically on Lennon, the one Beatle to have aspirations beyond being a pop poet. Fourth Time Around is an altogether darker, more disturbing portrait of an affair, though it emulates Norwegian Wood in its circular melody and structure.

At song's end it turns out that Dylan has been telling his tall story to someone who knew both of the participants – the clue is a “picture of you in your wheelchair / that leaned up against / Her Jamaican rum” – and who still “took me in” and “loved me then.” He informs said lady that his first offering to her came as a result of rifling through the dead girl's drawers. In the song's last lines, delivering his most deadpan “moral” to date, he reveals both of them to be cripples inside: “I never asked for your crutch / Now don't ask for mine.”

Presumably Dylan penned this impenetrable pastiche only days (or hours) before he began recording it in Nashville, Tennessee, nine days after returning to the road with The Hawks. Lyrics like these would have left most singer-songwriters tripping down their own stairs. But according to Wilentz, the song “evolved little in the studio,” where synchronizing the lyrics to an archaic waltz presented the real challenge. Just three of the 20 takes make it to the end, most false starts breaking down before they have really begun. According to the studio log, just takes five, 11, and 20 (incorrecth labelled as 19) were complete, with ten long false starts, and seven short false starts.

Yet by the time he left Nashville, Dylan felt comfortable enough with the song to introduce it into the solo half of his shows, where it stayed to the bitter end at the Albert Hall in May 1966.

There is one particular 1966 version one would pay a king's ransom to hear – the occasion when he played the song to Lennon in the privacy of a hotel suite. Lennon's response was predictable. Dylan asked, “What do you think?” and he replied, “I don't like it.” He never did learn to like it. Nor was he flattered by Dylan's interest. But Dylan was not dissuaded from playing it to him again, along with the six thousand other souls who filled the Albert Hall for the final night of that whirlwind world tour. If Dylan said his farewell to the song that night, it was still subjected to a harpsichord overdub a couple of weeks later back in Nashville, making it both the first and last song recorded for the landmark LP his label got around to releasing in July 1966.

Requiring the band to follow the words more than the melody made it a tough song to do electric, which presumably explains why it took until April 1999 for Dylan to attempt a band arrangement live. When he did, though, on 18 April 1999 in Granada, he delivered one of the great triumphs of the Never Ending Tour, caressing every line like he was back at the Royal Albert Hall playing to the gallery. He may even have improved the song by inverting the lines “You, you took me in” and “You loved me then.”

Prior to this 1999 revisitation, though, Fourth Time Around had been a song Dylan only sang when he was in the mood. And that mood came upon him just thrice, post-accident. The one time he attempted it on the Rolling Thunder Revue, at Augusta, 26 November 1975, he came caressingly close to its corrosive core. But one-off acoustic versions in 1974 and 1978 rank among Dylan's worst-ever live performances, a drastic contrast to the way he put himself at the service of the song on each and every 1966 performance.

Michael Gray

Fourth Time Around, a minor song on Blonde On Blonde, is more than just a parody of The Beatles’ song from a few months earlier, Norwegian Wood, though there is certainly a strong parallel between that song’s distinctive melody, sung by John Lennon, and the melody Dylan uses. It says something about how these two were perceived that Dylan was suspected (not least by Lennon) of parodying, rather than copying, the Beatles. Years later, when George Harrison was asked in an interview about the way that The Beatles and Dylan had influenced each other, he seemed to suggest that Fourth Time Around’ was about Norwegian Wood, and about how that song had been inspired by Dylan in the first place: “To my mind, it was about how John and Paul, from listening to Bob’s early stuff, had written Norwegian Wood. Judging from the title, it seemed as though Bob had listened to that and wrote the same basic song again, calling it Fourth Time Around”. The title suggests that the same basic tune kept bouncing around over and over again.’

Fourth Time Around begins as a cold, mocking put-down of a woman and a relationship untouched by love. For extra sarcasm’s sake, it is set against a backing of fawning, schmaltzy guitarwork. But the drumming hints from the start at something more urgent and compelling than cold mockery, so that by the time the lyric switches attention to a second, and love-tinged, relationship, the tone of the song has been switched over too.

The contrast between the two women is plain enough: ‘She threw me outside’ and ‘You took me in’—but the perspective is not that simple. The vast majority of it focuses on the ‘she’ part, and so suggests the narrator’s personal weakness and perhaps vulnerability; and in consequence this majority consists of language soaked in coarse sexual innuendo that brings out Dylan’s skill in pursuing the suggestive.

The songs on The Basement Tapes, recorded the year after Blonde On Blonde, indulge in the suggestive to an unprecedented extent for Dylan, with lines like ‘I bin hittin’ it too hard / My stones won’t take’, ‘that big dumb blonde with her wheel gorged’, ‘slap that drummer with a pipe that smells’, and much of Please Mrs Henry. 1974’s Planet Waves returned more heavy-handedly and so less comfortably to this coarseness. It is there in Dylan’s sleevenotes: ‘Back to the starting point! . . .I dropped a double brandy and tried to recall the events . . . family outings with strangers—furious gals with garters and smeared lips on bar stools that stank from sweating x . . . space guys off duty with big dicks and duck tails all wired up and voting for Eisenhower . . .’; and it is there in the otherwise admirable Tough Mama, where Dylan lazily offers the awkward analogy ‘Today on the countryside / It was hotter than a crotch’.

Dylan’s technique for delivering sexual innuendo is more interesting in Fourth Time Around. It is almost like a parody of a schoolboy reading Shakespeare aloud in class; instead of the frequently required line overflow, there is a pause— encouraged, but not exaggeratedly, by the tune— at the end of odd lines in the lyric. Into each pause comes all the innuendo and ambiguity that Dylan can muster: ‘I / Stood there and hummed / I tapped on her drum / I asked her how come / And she / Buttoned her boot / And straightened her suit / Then she said Don’t Get Cute. / So I forced / My hands in my pockets and felt with my thumbs . . . / And after finding out I’d / Forgotten my shirt / I went back and knocked. / I waited in the hallway, as she went to get it / And I tried to make sense / Out of that picture of you in your wheelchair / That leaned up against / Her / Jamaican rum / And when she did come / I asked her for some.’

The pause Dylan creates at the end of ‘And I tried to make sense’ has a different purpose. (And after it, the lapse back for that pointed ‘come’ has an added force: it seems in every sense uncontrollable on the narrator’s part.) With ‘tried to make sense’ the pause is to allow a change of mood to begin impinging. The tone is no longer jaundiced.

From here on it is open and alert and more sensitive; for from the midst of the imagery appropriate to the narrator’s sexual, loveless encounter, Dylan—and here is the touch of genius—produces a clear and striking counter-image: ‘. . . that picture of you in your wheelchair . . .’ With that, he establishes the hint that here, in the offing, is something with a warmer potential, something for which it is worth the narrator’s while to salvage his own sensibility. Yet having produced this counter-image, Dylan allows it to recede and settle at the back of the listener’s mind. Only at the very end is it reintroduced, to fuse into one clear perspective all the different threads of feeling and of imagery which run through the song. It ends: ‘And / When I was through / I filled up my shoe / And brought it to you; / And you, / You took me in / You loved me then / You didn’t waste time / And I, / I never took much / I never asked for your crutch / Now don’t ask for mine.’

That “crutch” has all the complexity at work in a worthwhile pun. As we are presented with the mental cadence from ‘wheelchair’ down to that ‘crutch’ at the close, in the sweep of which the ‘picture’ is brought sharply to life, we have one of those fine, rare moments in poetry where although the technical device is seen functioning it does so with such supreme calculation and panache that its ‘intrusion’ enriches the finished work.

In form, the song is, like so many Dylan works, a dramatic monologue (see Browning, Robert for more on this), here broadened by there being two women, rather than the more usual one woman, portrayed in this extraordinary implicatory way.

Dylan performed Fourth Time Around in the solo half of his 1966 concerts, starting, as far as we know, at Hempstead, NY, on 26 February 1966 (12 days after recording it for Blonde on Blonde) and keeping it in the repertoire every night. He next performed it as a one-off on the 1974 ‘comeback’ tour, playing it only in Memphis, January 23. Likewise on the 1975 Rolling Thunder tour, he performed it only in Augusta, Maine (November 26), and he didn’t play it at all on the 1976 tour. When he revisited the song in concert in the 1990s the melody line he chose showed just how close to Norwegian Wood the song really was. He gave an especially fine performance at the first of his two concerts in Portsmouth, England, on 24 September 2000.

Mike Marqusee

In Fourth Time Around, his reworking of Lennon's Norwegian Wood, he spells out what he offers and what he expects:

And I, I never took much
I never asked for your crutch
Now don't ask for mine

Mojo 2005 Readers Poll #62

Win Butler (The Arcade Fire) – Mojo 100 Greatest Dylan Songs #86

I have probably listened to it 50 or 60 times trying to figure out exactly what is going on. The melody is really similar to Norwegian Wood and I love the repetitive classical guitar lick, the machine-gun drum beat, and the bass line that just keeps driving and driving. Dylan can talk about real emotions and then go way off and say something completely aesthetic. The end result is this really rich, interesting piece that you can dig into forever. This one is kind of a warning. The new girlfriend is being told how it ended with the last one, and if yoy are not careful…. That line is really hard, “I never asked for your crutch / Now don’t ask for mine”. Or maybe it really is about The Beatles after all.

Oliver Trager

Mixing the desultory and the surreal into a quirky breeze of a song describing a terminal, codependent (three-way?) relationship in its death throes, Fourth Time Around meanders with the lack of commitment all partiies involved in the playful playlet appear to hold for one another. As poetry it does meander, Dylan rhyming whatever falls onto the page (“How come” and “Jamaican rum” being but one obvious example) in his circuitous, image-rich narrative. In a nifty lyrical sleight of hand, Dylan even manages to make clear that the woman he is singing to and the woman he is singing about are acquainted (he glimpses a photograph of one woman in the other’s abode). The runaway fantasy lyrics to Fourth Time Around sharply contrast with the rippling Tex-Mex folk-pop musical flow accompanying them.

Dylan was reportedly inspired by Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown), The Beatles romantic yet sexless jape, in composing Fourth Time Around, a darker and more convoluted yarn of infidelity and a request for forgiveness. He wrote the song a mere two months after the release of Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown), setting John Lennon’s distinctive melody to an ssymmetrical love story that was even more impenetrable than the original. Though later he described Fourth Time Around as “great”, Lennon once also commented that he “was very paranoid” about the song, perhaps in reference to the speed and incisiveness of Dylan’s reply. Was it a playful compliment or an ironic insult? Certainly, Dylan’s closing lines, “I never asked for your crutch, now don’t ask for mine” – could be taken either way.

Dylan performed Fourth Time Around regularly during his cataclysmic 1966 world tour with The Hawks. He played it just once in 1974 and 1978, and again in 2002 with acoustic-band renditions that caught even his most stalwart fans off guard.

Roger Ford

By Blonde On Blonde's standards, the finished mono version of this song has a fairly sparse instrumentation: apart from Dylan's acoustic guitar and harmonica, there are just bass, drums and a pair of Spanish guitars playing that distinctive plinketty riff all through the song. The US and UK mono albums have the same basic mix, but the drum sound has been made noticeably crisper on the US version.

However, it's clear both from the early mono mix mistakenly released in Canada and from the original stereo mix (released everywhere) that some major changes had been made to get the track to this finished state.

The song was originally recorded with an organ, played by Al Kooper, and it's clearly audible on both of these early mixes. It sounds rather like a harmonium, as opposed to Kooper's more usual Hammond organ. It comes in when Dylan starts singing and plays simple chords throughout the song; in the stereo mix it's out on the right hand channel with the drums.

Clearly, at some point after the recording sessions and after these initial mono and stereo mixes were made, the organ track was deemed to be unwanted. The problem was, it was recorded on the same master tape track as the drums, so it was impossible to get rid of it without losing the drums too. So what we find is that all later mixes have a different drum track dubbed onto the original take of the song - and no organ. The new drum track must have been dubbed right onto the four-track master, replacing the old drum and organ track, as all the CD remixes of the album made from the 4-track tapes have this replacement in place.

What is unclear is when the change was made, and where the new drum track came from. Al Kooper maintains that no overdubs were done at the original Nashville sessions - and indeed no overdub takes appear to be shown on the studio logs. However, two other complete takes of the song were done at the original session, and if one of these was recorded without the organ, then after the event the drum track could possibly have been lifted and dubbed onto the take chosen for release. Any difference in tempo between the takes would complicate things, but a drum track could be speeded up or slowed down as necessary without the change in pitch being noticeable. This could have been done during the Los Angeles mixing sessions before Dylan went abroad on tour.

Alternatively, Kenny Buttrey might have been flown in to do the overdub in Los Angeles, bypassing documentation in the Nashville studio logs.

Yet another possibility is that the new drum track was recorded very late in the day, at the known overdub session held in Nashville on 16 June 1966. According to the session records, Kenny Buttrey (drums) and Charlie McCoy (harpsichord) did four takes on Fourth Time Around, the first three being incomplete. The harpsichord, of course, is not audible on any released version of the song, but it is possible that the drum track alone ended up being used.

Krogsgaard, however, does state that the overdubbed take from the 16 June 1966 session was never released, and if the change was made this close to the album's release at the end of June then it's surprising that the track then went through further refinement, from the mix on the UK album to the spruced-up sound heard on the US mono release.

There are other points worth noting about the various vinyl mixes of the song.

On the Canadian mono version the guitars and bass sound pretty much the same as on the later mono mixes, but when the harmonica comes in it has a much harsher, more piercing sound; it's a relief that this was toned down in later mixes. The Canadian version is also a lot shorter, missing 20 seconds of the instrumental coda.

The original stereo mix not only has the original organ and drum track, it also has a rather illogical arrangement of the other instruments. As on the mix of "Visions Of Johanna" which is to be found on this original stereo release, Dylan's acoustic guitar is out on the left-hand channel; the two Spanish guitars are located behind his voice in the centre. This early stereo mix is also noticeably shorter than most other versions, though not nearly as short as the Canadian mono mix.

Not surprisingly, the revised stereo mix of the song which is to be found on later copies of Blonde On Blonde is much more akin to the finished mono version. It has the same overdubbed drum performance, no organ, and the bass sound is almost as full. The placing of the instruments has also been sorted out, Dylan's steel-string acoustic guitar sensibly trading places with the Spanish guitars. This is the way the instruments have been arranged on all of the later remixes of the album for digital release.

Listening closely to this revised stereo mix of the song, it becomes apparent that some tidying was done to the overdubbed drum track when the final mono mixes were produced, as here the new drum track enters the mix earlier, with Kenny Buttrey playing some tentative cymbal strokes behind Dylan's harmonica introduction before finally easing into the drum pattern just before the vocal begins. It seems nobody thought to do the same editing for the stereo mix. Note

To briefly round up on other features of the CD mixes: The original CD gives us pretty much the second stereo vinyl mix, but the vocal and harmonica have been lifted slightly in volume, as on many other tracks.

On the MasterSound CD Dylan's acoustic guitar sounds a lot brighter and clearer than in previous mixes, and is distractingly prominent in relation to Dylan's voice.

This guitar sounds much better balanced on the SACD, and the whole track has a much warmer feel, with stronger bass than on any of the preceding stereo releases. While the drums have a much more solid sound, a little more top-end here would have been nice, given the attention the drum sound received in the final mono mix. The light cymbal touches during the harmonica intro are hardly audible in this version. The stereo separation is less extreme than in other stereo mixes, so that the two Spanish guitars on the left now seem more a part of the band; and in the 5.1 mix you could reach out and touch them.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 05:41 GMT 
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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 08:24 GMT 
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Untrodden Path wrote:
A very nice performance at the Wembley Arena, London on October 5, 2000... Perhaps Bennyboy would be willing to provide a first hand review?


Yeah - it came across at first as something completely alien to me, taking a little while before the music connected with the part of my brain that recognised the song. Once it did, I was in heaven and his attention to the words and meaning and melody blew me away. Such a lovely, delicate, mysterious song, it seems to conjure itself up out of nowhere.


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 Post subject: Re: 4th time around
PostPosted: Thu October 27th, 2011, 10:49 GMT 
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That performance from October 5 is my favorite for this song and I originally received it by mistake. It didn't know Expecting Rain existed (wasn't into the internet at all until about 2005 or 06). I bought the October 6, 2000 boot off ebay but when it arrived it was the "First Night", the 5th, instead. Initially I was pissed and emailed the guy. He told me to listen to it and if I wanted to return it he'd give me my money back.

I eventually downloaded the October 6 show... both are great shows but I like the 5th better.


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