Discover more from Flagging Down the Double E's
Announcing My Book 'Pledging My Time: Conversations with Bob Dylan Band Members'
Preorder now on Indiegogo (with many new interviews!)
It’s probably the question I get most often: When are you going to compile all your Bob Dylan band interviews into a book?
The answer, my friend, is…now!
Pledging My Time: Conversations with Bob Dylan Band Members will be out next year. But I need your help to get it over the finish line.
I have just launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo and could use your support (speaking of “Pledging”).
My two previous books, Cover Me: The Stories Behind the Greatest Cover Songs of All Time and my 33 1/3 on Leonard Cohen and tribute albums, were both released the old-school way, through major publishers. But I decided to try the self-publishing route with this one. It gives me more control over the final product. But it also means I’ll have more upfront expenses - editing, design, etc.
You can preorder the book over at Indiegogo in various formats: hardcover, paperback, Ebook. That part’s fairly straightforward. This will be the only place to preorder the book before it comes out in spring/summer 2023.
There are also some additional perks you’ll have to go to Indiegogo to see. One I’m particularly excited about — and you will be too if you’ve ever wanted to ask someone in Bob’s band a question yourself.
“Hold on just a second,” you might be thinking, “Why would I pay to re-read a bunch of interviews you already posted for free?”
Well, for one, you haven’t read all of them. Not even close. Because over the past year I have quietly conducted quite a few additional interviews exclusively for the book. They’re just as in-depth and interesting as the one’s you’ve read in the newsletter, but will only be in Pledging My Time’s pages.
The book-exclusive interviews so far are:
Ray Benson - Asleep at the Wheel frontman, opened for Dylan in 2000 and sat in several times
Dickey Betts - Allman Brother, sang his own “Ramblin’ Man” with Bob onstage
Jeff Bridges - Masked & Anonymous co-star, on-set guitar-picking parter
Harvey Brooks - Bass player for Highway 61 Revisited and New Morning and Dylan’s first post-Newport electric shows in NYC & LA
Gary Burke - Percussionist for 1976 Rolling Thunder tour
Marshall Crenshaw - Auditioned to play bass in the first Never Ending Tour band. Didn’t get the gig.
Karl Denson - Lenny Kravitz sax player who jammed with Bob onstage at the Beacon, 1990
Leslie Dowdall - In Tua Nua singer, sang with Bob and Bono at Slane Castle, 1984
Ramblin' Jack Elliott - Folk-era friend and 1975 Rolling Thunder featured performer
Kinky Friedman - Featured performer for 1976 Rolling Thunder tour (taking Ramblin’ Jack’s slot) and wild 1991 Chabad telethon duo
Barry Goldberg - Newport 1965 keyboard player, only person to both produce Bob Dylan and be produced by him
Freddy Koella - Cult favorite Never Ending Tour guitarist (2003-4) whose short tenure left a big mark
Spooner Oldham - Gospel-era keyboard player, 1979-80
Michael "Soy Bomb" Portnoy - Grammy stage-crasher
Duke Robillard - Time Out of Mind guitarist and, briefly, Never Ending Tour band member
Fred Tackett - Guitarist for Dylan’s entire gospel run, 1979-81
Richard Thompson - Accompanied Bob at Guitar Legends 1991, had his “1952 Vincent Black Lightning” covered by Bob 20+ years later
Happy Traum - Greenwich Village compatriot, back in the fold a decade later for Greatest Hits II tunes
Those exclusives are, of course, on top of all the other interviews I’ve already done with Dylan bandmates and guests, which will also be collected in the book. Too many to bullet out there, so I’ll just recap the names quickly:
Rich Alderson, Colin Allen, Ronee Blakley, Cidny Bullens, Larry Campbell, Billy Cross, Keith Diercks, Richard Fernandez, John Fields, Fuzzy Frazer, Paul James, Jim Keltner, Louie Kemp, Dickie Landry, Claudia Levy, Stan Lynch, David Mansfield, Regina McCrary, Chris O’Dell, Christopher Parker, Alan Pasqua, Scarlet Rivera, Luther Rix, David Robb, Larry “Ratso” Sloman, Rob Stoner, Noel Paul Stookey, Fred Tackett, Benmont Tench, Bobby Valentino, Winston Watson, Jon Wurster
There’s more information about the book at the Indiegogo page. I hope you’ll consider supporting the project by preordering it there, and maybe consider one of the other perks too.
Keep on keepin’ on,
PS. And please tell any other Dylan fans in your life. Since I’m doing this all myself, there’s no publisher’s marketing muscle pushing this, so any help getting the word out is much appreciated.