Renowned lyricist and songwriter Bob Dylan has lashed out at critics in a recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine.
While Dylan is known to quote the works of writers, such as Japanese author Junichi Saga and poet Henry Timrod in his lyrics, he has been criticized in the past for not citing his sources clearly.
When asked for his response to such remarks, an infuriated Dylan said that the disparagements came from the same people who led the backlash against him when he first incorporated electric guitar to his music on his 1965 album ‘Bringing It All Back Home.’
Dylan stated: “Wussies and pussies complain about that stuff. It’s an old thing – it’s part of the tradition. It goes way back. These are the same people that tried to pin the name Judas on me. Judas, the most hated name in human history! If you think you’ve been called a bad name, try to work your way out from under that. Yeah, and for what? For playing an electric guitar? As if that is in some kind of way equitable to betraying our Lord and delivering him up to be crucified. All those evil motherf**kers can rot in hell.”
Dylan argued that some of the aforementioned writers would no longer be known if it weren’t for artists like him: “Oh, yeah, in folk and jazz, quotation is a rich and enriching tradition. That certainly is true. It’s true for everybody, but me. There are different rules for me. And as far as Henry Timrod is concerned, have you even heard of him? Who’s been reading him lately? And who’s pushed him to the forefront? Who’s been making you read him? And ask his descendants what they think of the hoopla.”
He concluded: “And if you think it’s so easy to quote him and it can help your work, do it yourself and see how far you can get.”
The full interview with Dylan can be read in the new issue of Rolling Stone, on newsstands Friday, September 14th.