Pass it Around

"If I made records for my own pleasure, I would only record Charley Patton songs." - Bob Dylan

The Dylan / Allen Ginsberg Recordings left off Another Self Portrait 1971

It is interesting that the Bob Dylan box set "Another Self Portrait" which purports to cover the years from 1968 to 1971 omits entirely the collaborations with Poet Allen Ginsberg.  I suspect most Dylan fans are aware of the Ginsberg appearance in the (now more than one) films created for Subterranean Homesick Blues, but few know of the work the wordsmiths did together in 1971.  It was a minor side project, to be sure...but still the sessions represent the work of two magnificent talents of the era. 

In October 1971 Dylan apparently played along Ginsberg, Happy Traum, Ginsberg's longtime lover Peter Orlovsky and poet Gregory Corso in the PBS-TV studio in New York City which was shown, likely ONLY in New York City…in November 1971. 

Also in November 1971  "The Allen Ginsberg Sessions" were recorded for LP release.  9 songs were recorded, including two versions of September on Jessore Road.  One version was released on a flexidisc in Sing Out Magazine.  Most of the songs are credited as Allen Ginsberg / Dylan efforts.  Some were to have been released on Holy Soul & Jelly Roll on Apple records.  Others were released on John Hammond's record label (?) in 1983.

A typical, if far more coherent song from the sessions is Vomit Express below.   The voices are compatible!  Rhino Records compiled some, if not all of the tracks on the box set Holy Soul Jelly Roll in 1994.  The Sixties (and early Seventies) would not have been the same without Dylan and Ginsberg.

This is the great lost Dylan song!  It also contains the phrase "I won't fuck around" and considerable homosexual lyrics… which might explain the omission from Another Self Portrait.

Also shown here is one of the best scenes in the film I'm Not There in which David Cross as Allen Ginsberg appears!