Producer/artist Daniel Lanois, who produced two Bob Dylan albums, 1989’s Oh Mercy, and 1997’s Time Out Of Mind, told the Vancouver Sun in a story published today, February 25, 2015, that Bob Dylan visited him last year and spent an hour and a half talking to Lanois about how mysterious recording artists were to Dylan when he was a kid.
“He came to my house eight or six months ago and spent a few hours,” Lanois said. “We listened to 21 songs — because he’s made two records of this (Sinatra project). And he said, ‘Let me tell you, Dan: If you have the time, can I tell you how I grew up?’ So we sat in the kitchen. I hadn’t heard a note.
“He spoke for an hour and a half on how, as a kid, you couldn’t even get pictures of anybody. You might get a record but you didn’t know what they looked like. So there was a lot of mystery associated with the work at the time. As far as hearing live music, he only heard a couple of shows a year, like the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra might come through.
“But the music he did hear really touched him and he felt that a lot of that music was written not only by great professional songwriters at the time, but a lot of it was written from the heart, from the wartime, and people just pining for a lover. He felt there was a lot of spirit in that music. He felt there was a kind of beauty, a sacred ground for him.
“After having said all that, we then listened to the music and I felt everything that he talked about. For one of America’s great writers to say, ‘I’m not gonna write a song. I’m gonna pay homage to what shook me as young boy,’ I thought was very graceful and dignified.”
– A Days Of The Crazy-Wild blog post –