the past is very much with us

I wrote a while ago about works of art (specifically movies) that you can’t easily see.

But they are the exception, of course. And it sometimes seems like everything that never came out before is all available now, or it’s about to be.

I vaguely remember the “White Album” (technically: The Beatles, by the Beatles), but I have no interest in hearing it now, let alone at six disks and over $125. But a lot of people apparently feel otherwise.

More Blood, More Tracks

This one I was somewhat more interested in. The story is that Bob Dylan recorded Blood on the Tracks in New York, with very spare accompaniment, and that version was almost released, but then his mind was changed (one story is that his brother was not impressed with the New York version) and he re-recorded half of the songs with a larger band in Minneapolis. That’s the version which was released — half and half.

But I’ve always been curious, and some of the unreleased New York versions have come out here and there and I’ve been collecting them. My phone has two versions of the album “Released” and “Original,” though the “original” one is still missing one song which has never been released.

Until now.

So, I was interested when this project was announced, but not enough to get the six-disk edition ($114.98), which has multiple versions of every song on the album (and one, “Up to Me,” which was not on the released album at all). And that’s only the New York versions — the alternate takes from the Minneapolis sessions weren’t saved. Otherwise I guess we’d have a twelve-disk edition (“Even More Blood, Even More Tracks”?).

I got the one-disk version, which was interesting to listen to (but there were not, needless to say, any huge surprises or revelations). That was enough for me.

Which is not to say that I’m all about the new and not at all about the old. I’m still thinking about and re-watching The Other Side of the Wind — though that’s old in some ways but not in others, since it just came out this month — and as I was writing this I was listening to some brand-new Tony & Cassandra mysteries (again, old — based on a television show from fifty years ago — but also new since they came out yesterday).

Tangerine Dream

On the other hand, I just discovered something new (at least to me — very far from new in the real world).

Tangerine Dream is a band, a band that has existed since 1967 and I’d certainly heard of them by the early 1970s, but either I never actually heard them, or they’ve changed, or my tastes have changed (or some combination thereof), because I just discovered them, and the past few weeks I’ve listened to little else.

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