The massive new epic Bob Dylan project called “Mixing Up the Medicine” is getting a preview this Friday in the Hamptons.
No one has yet seen the 608 book coming from Callaway Editions so the Friday event has taken on an air of excitement.
Nicholas Callaway says the book — approved and encouraged by Dylan’s offices — spans the poet-singer-Nobel Prize winner’s entire career with 1,000 pictures from photographers and filmmakers, many previously unseen. It also boasts 30 essays from esteemed writers like Douglas Brinkley and Sean Wilentz.
Very astutely, Callaway tells me he acquired world print, eBook and audio rights for a portion of the archival materials from the Bob Dylan Center (BDC) in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The book, which is selling on amazon at a discounted $90, was put together by Mark Davidson, Curator and Director of the Bob Dylan Archive, who wrote and edited the book along with archivist Parker Fishel. Among the essayists are Peter Carey, John Doe, Raymond Foye, Joy Harjo, Richard Hell, Clinton Heylin, Alan Licht,Greil Marcus, Allison Moorer, Michael and Griffin Ondaatje, Gregory Pardlo, Amanda Petrusich, TomPiazza, Lee Ranaldo, Alex Ross, Robert Rubin, Ed Ruscha, Lucy Sante, Jeff Slate, Greg Tate.
There’s also a newly updated Greatest Hits coming from Sony Legacy that includes songs like “Make You Feel My Love,” “Forever Young,”Hurricane,” and “Things Have Changed.” For most of the last 50 years, Dylan’s greatest hits didn’t go beyond 1972. Now “Tangled Up in Blue” finally gets the proper status. I feel they should have included a couple more, but no one asked me!
PS What does the title mean? It’s from the famous opening line of “Subterranean Homesick Blues” — Johnny’s in the basement/mixing up the medicine — made even more famous by DA Pennebaker’s immortal card throwing video of the song from his movie, “Don’t Look Back.” There have been countless knock offs since then, but there’s only one original!