LOS ANGELES Aug 24 Bob Dylan's label has
dusted off 47 demos recorded by the singer between 1962 and
1964 for its latest foray into his extensive archives.
"The Bootleg Series Volume 9 -- The Witmark Demos" is due
in stores on Oct. 19, the same day Columbia Records also
releases new mono mixes of Dylan's first eight albums in a
Columbia launched its Dylan "Bootleg Series" in 1991, and
the most recent set was issued in 2008, "Tell Tale Signs."
The Witmark demos, which have long been bootlegged by
collectors, include early versions of such songs as "Blowin' In
The Wind, "The Times They Are A Changin'" and "Masters Of
Dylan, accompanied only by his acoustic guitar, harmonica
and occasionally piano, recorded them for his first music
publisher, Leeds Music, in January 1962, and for his second
publisher, M. Witmark & Sons, between 1962 and 1964 -- all
before he turned 24.
The publishers, in turn, would pitch the songs to other
artists, which is how they came to be recorded by the likes of
Peter, Paul and Mary and Stevie Wonder ("Blowin' In The Wind"),
Judy Collins ("Tomorrow Is A Long Time") and the Byrds ("Mr
Columbia said 15 of the compositions have never been
officially released, although one of those listed, the
civil-rights tale "The Death Of Emmett Till," appeared on the
1972 Smithsonian Folkways compilation "Broadside Ballads, Vol.
6: Broadside Reunion."
The boxed set, "Bob Dylan - The Original Mono Recordings,"
comprises eight albums reproduced from their first-generation
mono mixes, spanning his 1962 self-titled debut through to
1967's "John Wesley Harding," and including his 1966 double
opus "Blonde on Blonde." Many of these albums were reissued in
SACD stereo in 2003.
Mono was often the preferred sound reproduction
classification of such acts as Dylan and the Beatles (who
reissued mono versions of their albums last year), while the
stereo mixes were left to studio engineers.
(Reporting by Dean Goodman)