Monday, April 8, 2013

Dylan Cover #82 Ronnie McCoury "Man Gave Name To All The Animals"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. This month we have a special focus on Artists who will be playing this years Jazzfest in New Orleans.  Today's artist: Ronnie McCoury  covering "Man Gave Names To All The Animals"  
(The Del McCoury Band plays with Preservation Hall Jazz Band on 5/5 closing out the festival on the Fais Do-Do Stage

Thoughts on Original:
Well here is a deep cut, "Man Gave Names To All The Animals" is a bit of an odd ball on Dylan's most fire and brimstone filled album, Slow Train Coming. In my opinion STC is the best of his Jesus phase releases and the time when Dylan seemed to be incredibly focused on the music and production of his songs; everything sounded good.  The words were another story, he wanted to convey his beliefs, but the imagery is pretty weak and his stories simple and direct, like today's cover tune.  Never giving it too much love or hate, but we must say the focus on turning it into a bluegrass kids tune is pretty intriguing...      

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Cheating a bit with this one as Ronnie McCoury is the named artist on this track, but one only needs to look at the incredibly cheesy video to see that the full Del McCoury Band is in action here as they will be down south at Jazzfest. Ronnie takes the lead on this children focused release but Del and company are there to pick along with him.  For those who have never heard of these guys before, shame on you, they are living legends in the art of bluegrass.  Their pairing with Preservation Hall a few years ago was almost our pick for album of the year. We loved them when they played Carnegie together and we can't wait to catch a couple of tunes from their set on the 5th.     
Thoughts on Cover:
Fairly straight ahead, but with the groups own bluegrass take. Bluegrass (like a lot of genre's) fits Dylan's writing but what puts this one up a little more even is the idea; a children's album. Taking this song out of it's original religious zealot phase makes it lighthearted and a bit more fun.  Granted the group seems very serious in their playing (not in that god awful video though) but the kids are the focus while mixing in drum tight bluegrass. If anything I was expecting the band to be a bit goofier in their delivery, not sure if that would enhance things or not? An album the parents and kids can enjoy together, grab it here.    

Grade: B+ not the best tune to begin with but a fine cover version.

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