The Basement Tapes

Highly Appreciated


The Basement Tapes  is a studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan and the Band, released on June 26, 1975 by Columbia Records.  The songs featuring Dylan’s vocals were recorded in 1967, eight years before the album’s release, at houses in and around Woodstock, New York, where Dylan and the Band lived.  Although most of the Dylan songs had appeared on bootleg records, The Basement Tapes marked their first official release.  (More from Wikipedia)
Not long after I first got to college at North Carolina State University (probably in late 1969), one of the big record stores in Raleighthe Record Bar (which was within walking distance of the campus) had several tables set up in the middle of the store that were piled high with bootleg albums.  I had never heard of such a thing before, so I snapped up four right away, including two by my man Bob Dylan:  the famous Great White Wonder double-album set, plus John Birch Society Blues (also on the G.W.W. Records label). 
I loved those bootleg albums and played them all the time, as did Dylan fans everywhere.  It was actually not until I bought the “legitimate” 1975 release of the G.W.W. music as The Basement Tapes that I realized that most people were not enamored, as I was, with the songs that Dylan had recorded early on that never made it onto any of his albums.  Obviously, what most people loved were the later electric songs that he recorded in 1967 with The Band, because that is what is on The Basement Tapes
(April 2012)
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The simplest possible band name was taken by a group of fine musicians who played back-up for Bob Dylan for many years, most famously in 1967 with what became known as The Basement Tapes.  The story that I heard (there are several as to the origin of the name) was that Dylan typically referred to them in conversation as “the band”, and eventually they adopted the name The Band.  
(June 2012)
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Bob Dylan hates bootleg albums, but he has consented to the official release of a series of albums called The Bootleg Series.  (Earlier releases that also included songs that were previously available only as bootlegs are the 1975 album The Basement Tapes, which included numerous recordings from Great White Wonder album; and the 1985 five-LP or three-CD retrospective Biograph).  To date, nine volumes have been released in The Bootleg Series, the most recent (The Bootleg Series Vol. 9: The Witmark Demos: 1962–1964) in 2010
(August 2012)
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I dare say that I was one of the few Dylan fans who was disappointed when The Basement Tapes came out.  I eagerly put on the supposed legitimate release of the classic double-LP bootleg album Great White Wonder, only to find that not a single one of the great early acoustic songs that made up most of that album were present; it was all electric songs that Bob Dylan recorded with The Band at the famous Big Pink house (and honestly, there weren’t all that many of them on Great White Wonder).  

(May 2013)
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Anyway, here is what and who I talked about last year:
(Year 8 Review)
Last edited: March 22, 2021