2015 note – the original You Tube video that led off this post is no longer available.
Two versions, however, of “See You Later, Allen Ginsberg” have emerged on the recently released – The Basement Tapes Complete – The Bootleg Series Volume 11
” See You Later, Allen Ginsberg” is a joyful throw-away that appears on Bob Dylan’s The Genuine Basement Tapes Volume 4. It was recorded at Big Pink, West Saugerties, New York, between June and October 1967. The “back-up band” is (of course) The Band. The giddy response in the call-and-response is by the much-missed Richard Manuel.
We couldn’t resist spotlighting its source-material too. Bill Haley and the Comets’ “See You Later, Alligator” (seen here in the 1956 movie, “Rock Around The Clock” (note the Beats and the Squares, hipster lingo – “gone, baby”):
“Last Thoughts on Allen Ginsberg & Bob Dylan”, Ben Simon’s note (originally published in Beatdom,) leads off an unapologetic Dylan-centric page today. Bob and Allen. Allen and Bob. Expecting Rain‘s own archived discussion of the topic would obviously be one place to start, our own notes on the two of them, another – here (and here too).
Here‘s a thirty-second clip of Allen in 1995 extolling Bob Dylan – “It’s not that Dylan invented great lyrics, it’s that he actually continued great lyrics”..”If you have Ma Rainey – “I’m Goin’ (Gone) Where The Southern Cross The Yellow Dog”, or if you get on to Robert Johnson’s “Stones In My Passway”, or, if you go on further to Skip James…”
“The young poet took me aside at a party in Bolinas and played me some records from a new young singer..folk singer, and it was the “Masters of War”, I think (“A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall”) – “I’ll know my song well before I start singing, and stand on a mountain where all can reflect it” – and I was really amazed..”
“And reflect it from the mountain so all soul’s can see it./ Then I’ll stand on the ocean until I start sinkin’/ But I’ll know my songs well before I start singin’..”
“The Dylan/Ginsberg Sessions – A List of All Known Collaborations Between Allen Ginsberg and Bob Dylan”, is (or will be) a useful discographic reference and may be viewed here.
They’ll be plenty more Dylan-Ginsberg posts on the Allen Ginsberg Project, rest assured.
Part two of this post coming up tomorrow.