A new recording of Bob Dylan’s 1963 classic “Blowin’ In the Wind,” produced by T Bone Burnett could sell for more than one million dollars at auction. The new recording features Dylan singing the song nearly 60 years since its original release, along with Burnett on guitar, and is only available on a sole disc.
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Produced as an “Ionic Original,” the disc was made by Burnett’s company, Neofidelity, which produced the one-of-a-kind record using a process Burnett patented to deliver a higher quality audio format. The”ionic” format also features a unique coating making it impervious to the normal wear and tear of analog records.
In the immediate future, very few will hear the track until Christie’s auctions off the recording on July 7, which it estimates will sell for $725 thousand to $1.21 million. The disc will be sold as a physical object, giving the purchaser the rights to distribute it.
“From my point of view, we were doing this for history,” said Burnett, who was a part of Dylan’s band in the 1970s. “I feel that heartbreak as a player and a producer, but I want to develop music as a fine art.”
Sony Music and Universal Music Group ultimately have the rights to the recording and composition, respectively, so they can only be distributed with their permission. “I expect this to end up somewhere where the public will have access to it,” added Burnett.
Rebelling, in a sense, to the current business of music around licensing and streaming, and the difficulty in regulating copies, which Burnett says has devalued the art of music, Neofidelity will provide an alternative format for those who see music as art by providing the highest quality audio and within scarce quantity.
“We’ve all been conditioned to accept the terms of, and react to things from the frame of, mass production,” said Burnett. “This is not that. I want to break free of the parameters of musicians since the age of mechanical reproduction, where the government and broadcasters and tech companies tell us what music is worth.”
Burnett hopes to work with other artists moving ahead and revealed that he already recorded several more songs with Dylan for release in a similar format.
“I was responding to the idea that music should be free,” said Burnett. “Dylan sells paintings for a million. Why should his recordings be worth any less?
Main Photo by Jason Myers/Sacks and Co; Bob Dylan (Photo: PL Gould)