HOLLYWOOD—Finally, singer-songwriter Bob Dylan has agreed to receive his Nobel Literature Prize diploma and medal in the coming days in Stockholm, Sweden, according to the secretary of the Swedish Academy. He will be performing on April 1 and the following day and then another in the southern Swedish city of Lund on April 9.
The controversy of the Nobel prize caused Dylan’s silence about the award for weeks and his no-show at the annual banquet in December raised a few eyebrows. The good news is that the 75-year-old Dylan will be meeting this weekend behind closed doors. In order to receive the almost $1 million prize, Dylan needs to give a lecture within six months from December 10, however, it does not need to be delivered in Stockholm.
The decision to award the prize to Dylan, whom the Academy said had “created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition,” was seen by some as a slap in the face to mainstream writers of poetry and prose. The Academy has a tradition of stepping outside the traditional boundaries, or looking outside of the box of literary form. In a rare interview with author Bill Flanagan, the legend spoke of music and fellow celebrities and artists who have passed away.
In the interview he said he’s been affected by the passing of such friends as Muhammad Ali, Leon Russell, Merle Haggard, Leonard Cohen. Then he was asked about Elvis Presley and a report that the King didn’t show up for a recording session with Dylan and George Harrison. Dylan clarified: “He did show up, it was us that didn’t.” He was also a fan of Amy Winehouse. He said he liked Amy Winehouse’s last recording and added, “She was the last real individualist around.” He also spoke highly of Frank Sinatra. Dylan is releasing a three-disc album titled Triplicate, which will be released on March 31.
You might ask, what could Bob Dylan and Elvis Presley have in common? Elvis was not a songwriter, he was always looking for a good song to sing. So who else would he have turned to, no other than Bob Dylan, and even recorded two of his songs. As a result the King of Rock and Roll had an uncanny ability to select the right songs to record that shot to the top of the charts. So no surprise that Presley turned to Dylan, along with the Beatles.
When Dylan was growing up in Hibbing, Minnesota, he idolized Elvis. Dylan knew early on that if he wanted to make it in the music business, his best chance would be to go on his own. In just a few shorts years, Dylan made a name for himself in the folk music genre. Both of these legends struggled with a “ghost of electricity,” the music image forever assigned to them by popular culture.
Rose’s Scoop: Soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo received yet another honor, the Madeira International Airport was officially named to Cristiano Ronaldo Airport on March 29, in honor of the Portuguese soccer superstar, who was born and raised in Madeira, Portugal.