What you can learn from Bob Dylan’s career
Rock N Roll legend Bob Dylan has enjoyed a long and illustrious career spanning over 50 years. He is responsible for writing some of the most classic songs in the history of the music business. Over the course of his life, Bob Dylan has been faced with many career defining decisions. Below is a list of 3 of those decisions, that every musician can take a lesson from.
1. Your birth name sucks? CHANGE IT - Bob Dylan was born Robert Allen Zimmerman on May 24, 1941 in Duluth, MN. Although a good name for a nice Jewish boy growing up in Minnesota, in the world of music, it doesn’t exactly slide off your tongue. Even though most of the facts surrounding the name change are shrouded in mystery, this much we do know. Between the ages of 17 and 18, he began performing under the name Bob Dylan. Bob Dylan has always had a great sense of the importance of image. He understand early on, a great name is paramount to success in the industry. As Bob puts it, "You're born, you know, the wrong names, wrong parents. I mean, that happens. You call yourself what you want to call yourself. This is the land of the free.
2. Don’t Be Afraid To Relocate - Bob Dylan began his career playing small coffee houses around the University of Minnesota. After enjoying some marginal local success, in May of 1960, he dropped out of college and relocated to New York City, with the hopes of getting a record deal. In September of that same year, Dylan gained some public recognition when Robert Shelton wrote a positive review in The New York Times of a show at Gerde’s Folk City. His talents eventually caught the attention of record producer John Hammond. One month later Hammond signed Bob Dylan to Columbia records. Although, we can never know for sure if he would have enjoyed the same success had he stayed in Minnesota. Bob’s decision to relocate to New York City, definitely moved his career along more quickly.
3. Embrace Change - On July 25, 1965, at the Newport Folk Festival, Bob Dylan took the stage, “plugged in” his Fender Stratocaster, and changed to course of his life. Initially booed and jeered loudly by his most ardent fans. Bob’s decision to go electric reverberated across the music industry. His first electric recording, Like A Rolling Stone, has been called by many critics of the best best songs in Rock N Roll history. By embracing change & taking the road less traveled, Bob Dylan made himself into the music icon he is today.