Bob Dylan Releases Stunning New/Old ‘Murder Most Foul’

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And just like that, Bob Dylan has released a song, “Murder Most Foul,” that he recorded “a while back.” It runs nearly 17 minutes and it’s a stunning period piece that weaves various pop culture references including the Beatles imminent arrival on the scene, Woodstock, The Who’s Tommy, and Wolfman Jack, among its various topics, all centered around the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The song arrived in the wee hours on March 27, accompanied by a brief note from the Bard:

Greetings to my fans and followers with gratitude for all your support and loyalty across the years. This is an unreleased song we recorded a while back that you might find interesting.
Stay safe, stay observant and may God be with you.
Bob Dylan

“Murder Most Foul” is accompanied by piano, with minimal violin and percussion accents.

“Twas a dark day in Dallas, November ’63, a day that will live on in infamy,” it begins. The lyrics weave in numerous pop culture references including feature films like Gone With the Wind, Nightmare on Elm Street, and _. Song titles like “What’s New, Pussycat?,” “Wake Up Little Susie” and “Another One Bites the Dust.”  All the while, he frequently returns to the events on that dark day in the nation’s history.

Dylan namechecks dozens of fellow recording artists: Don Henley, Glenn Frey, John Lee Hooker, Dickey Betts, Lindsey [Buckingham] and Stevie Nicks, among them.

Listen to “Murder Most Foul”

We suspect that the song isn’t as old as Dylan has positioned it, for it seems clear who’s the target of his lyrics.

Dylan‘s planned tour of Japan has been cancelled, a victim of the Coronavirus outbreak. The 14 performances were to place from April 1-24 in Tokyo and Osaka. He has a 2020 summer tour planned with Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats. Tickets are available here.

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