Album: Bob Dylan (Featuring Johnny Cash) – Travelin’ Thru, 1967 – 1969: The Bootleg Series Vol. 15
Release date: November 1, 2019
With the world abuzz with the release of Ken Burns' recent Country Music documentary on PBS, Johnny Cash's story has been brought front and center again to the collective consciousness... not that he really left at all. Cash fans can rejoice yet again, however, with the announcement that Dylan will be releasing two full CD's of previously unreleased and unheard demo sessions featuring the two icons collaborating with one-another.
Disc One includes audio from Dylan’s recording sessions at Columbia’s Studio A in Nashville, including alternate versions of compositions written for John Wesley Harding (Oct. 17 and Nov. 6, 1967) and Nashville Skyline (Feb. 13-14, 1969), including “All Along The Watchtower” and “Lay Lady Lay.” The set also introduces a new song, “Western Road.”
Discs Two and Three of Travelin’ Thru include Dylan’s collaborations with Cash, including the Columbia Studio A sessions and on-stage performances at the Ryman Auditorium (May 1, 1969) for the recording of the premiere episode of The Johnny Cash Show, which originally broadcast June 7, 1969 on ABC. Disc Three concludes the set with tracks Dylan recorded with bluegrass legend Earl Scruggs on May 17, 1970 for the PBS television special “Earl Scruggs: His Family and Friends,” which originally aired in January 1971.
The period captures the second hard pivot of Dylan’s career: Just as he’d turned away from his galvanizing folk recordings of the early ‘60s by adopting a rock format with the “Bringing It All Back Home” and “Blonde on Blonde” albums, here he turned away from that sound by embracing a more laid-back, country-influenced approach