“Bob had given me free rein to shoot it all—onstage, offstage, dressing rooms, parties, trailers, whatever was going on.”
If you get a 3am phonecall from Bob Dylan offering you a job, you’d be forgiven for thinking you were still in the depths of a dream. Thankfully for Ken Regan it was all real, and Bob was asking Ken to be the exclusive photographer on the Rolling Thunder Revue tour.
The tour would be spread over two jaunts in autumn 1975 and spring 1976- the two legs being separated by the release of Dylan’s album Desire in January. That release came on the heels of Blood On The Tracks and The Basement Tapes, with the three comprising Bob’s second great period and silencing anyone who'd ever doubted the great man.
The tour had a revolving revue of players, with the likes of Joan Baez, Roger Mcguinn, Ramblin’ Jack Elliot, Joni Mitchell and T.Bone Burnett dropping in and out. It's most famous for its all star, Muhammed Ali-attended benefit for the imprisoned boxer Ruben ‘Hurricane Carter’- the subject of ‘Hurricane’, the opening song on Desire - and though things ran out of steam by the end of the second leg in '76, its place in rock and roll history is assured.
Rolling Thunder: Photographs by Ken Regan is published by Ormond Yard Press March 2016. Limited Edition of 750 individually numbered copies.
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