Anniversaries: Marcus Mumford Honors Dylan’s Birthday; Cannes Remembers Bob Marley


In honor of Bob Dylan‘s 70th birthday on May 24th, Rolling Stone has compiled a heap of birthday coverage today, including a feature in which ten artists reflect on their favorite Dylan songs. The one surprise in the set—and the only post-1975 Dylan song selected—is “Not Dark Yet,” from 1997’s Time Out of Mind, selected by none other than Marcus Mumford.

The lead singer of You Oughta Know favorites Mumford & Sons (who played the 2011 Grammys with Dylan) confesses that his “favorite Dylan song of all time” is “I Was Young When I Left Home,” his 1961 rework of the traditional “Nine Hundred Miles.” But he gives special recognition to Dylan’s later work: “he’s got so much stamina as a songwriter. He just keeps going, keeps churning out these amazing songs. That’s how you do it, man. If you want someone to be your hero as a musician, I don’t think there’s anyone better than him.”

Rolling Stone also lists the greatest Bob Dylan covers, but fail to mention the Wailersrock-steady “Like a Rolling Stone” cover, with Bunny Livingston sharing vocal duties with Bob Marley, who succumbed to cancer thirty years ago today. The reggae star may remain a singles artist in the United States—his best-selling record is the posthumous greatest-hits compilation Legend—but he nevertheless continues to resonate deeply as a musician and an icon, and is at least as popular in nations whose latter-day post-colonial history resembles that of Jamaica, a phenomenon that British director Kevin Macdonald has been traveling the world documenting in preparation for a definitive non-fiction film on Marley. He will be showing a partial rough cut at the Cannes Film Festival, which starts today.

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