Blowing in the Wind (the song)

Blowing in the WindI am currently enrolled in a 7 week online course from Coursera – History of Rock Part 1. This week we have been exploring the music of Bob Dylan, the rise of folk-rock, and the American response to the British music invasion in the early 1960s.

Bob Dylan was was not well-known in the first few years of his career and was more successful as a song-writer.  His song Blowin’ in the Wind – written in 1962 became popular by the folk music trio Peter, Paul and Mary who released the song in June 1963. In the mid 1960s my parents bought a record by the group,  “In the Wind” and a couple of decades later I bought a Peter Paul and Mary Greatest hits CD. But I digress … back to the song.

In this article I show the video of Peter, Paul and Mary’s performance followed by a recording of Bob Dylan performing the song. Which do you prefer? I have also included the lyrics. I enjoy the music of Bob Dylan and his lyrics can be read as poetry – independent of the music.

Peter Paul and Mary singing Blowin’ in the Wind

Lyrics

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man ?
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand ?
Yes, how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they’re forever banned ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Yes, how many years can a mountain exist
Before it’s washed to the sea ?
Yes, how many years can some people exist
Before they’re allowed to be free ?
Yes, how many times can a man turn his head
Pretending he just doesn’t see ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Yes, how many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky ?
Yes, how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry ?
Yes, how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Bob Dylan’s performance

Read the Wikipedia article about the song.

How to play the song fingerpicking style.

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