MY OWN BACK PAGES

22 08 2011

Bob Dylan wrote one of my favorite songs “My Back Pages” back amidst the Beatles invasion of the United States in the summer of 1964. It was recorded in June of that year under the working title “Ancient Memories,” and was the last song on the album, “Another Side of Bob Dylan.” The song was partly based on the traditional folk song, “Young But Growing.” In the song’s lyrics, Dylan criticizes himself for having been cocky and pompous and a little too certain that he once thought he knew everything and he apologizes for his previous overconfident stance. The lyrics also signal the reality of Dylan’s growing disillusionment with the 1960’s protest movement and hints strongly at his intention to abandon social songwriting altogether. One of the song’s most famous lines is the refrain: “I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now…”

Bob Dylan would actually wait until 1988 before he ever sang My Back Pages live in concert and it was the group The Byrds that actually had the biggest hit with the record as it would be their last charting hit of the 1960’s. As for me, I have always resonated with this classic piece because as I have made my way through this life- I have grown to admit that I may not be as smart as I used to be- but I am a whole lot wiser now! It takes years to genuinely mature and it takes real life experiences to grow knowledge to its full fruitful end. You can’t learn everything from a book. You must understand that application is even greater than information and without inspiration you may never reach your peak aspirations!

The other day as I was playing My Back Pages on my FUN 106.7 Morning Show, I began to mess around with the lyrics and personalize them a bit. I actually became one with the composition and the words just seemed to flow fluently from me. While I know that it is an anathema for many to even mess with the works of Bob Dylan, I offer you my own version of this iconic classic and maybe these updated words will speak to you in an important way today!

MY OWN BACK PAGES- BY RUDY SHEPTOCK

Life zips by so fast these days- it’s so hard to catch my breath… And the feelings clash within my soul- seems just like I’m racing death… But the miracle never abandons me- as I feel His presence now- Oh I was so much older then- I’m younger than that now…

Insecure and wandering lost- I looked to find my way… Romantic dreams ripped through my seams- and love would never stay… I cried out from the deepest place- and sought my lasting wow- Oh but I was so much older than- I’m younger than that now…

Good and bad I know- both of these life make… Right and left the road- O Lord which one to take???

Records on my stereo- the songs of simpler times… And it’s almost as if as there he goes- he’s about to lose his mind… But right before the edge I soar- I feel his light upon my brow- Oh I was so much older than- I’m younger than that now…

Crimson blood flowed through his veins- to set my spirit free… Countless times his mighty hand- came down to rescue me… Lonely days faded away- into peaceful nights somehow- Oh I was so much older than- I’m younger than that now…


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