Hear Bob Dylan’s “Early Roman Kings” And “We Are The World” Rehearsal


Videos by American Songwriter

Right now, you can get a preview of Bob Dylan’s Tempest. The album track “Early Roman Kings,” an invigorated blues romp, can be heard in the trailer for the Cinemax series Strike Back. The series premiere of Strike Back airs August 17th, and will feature “Scarlet Town,” another Tempest track. As we reported yesterday, the album’s title track is a 14-minute meditation on The Titanic.

Here’s the lyrics to the first verse that we could make out:

The early Roman kings in their shark skin suits
bow ties and buttons
high top boots
Drivin’ their spikes in
blazin’ the rails
nailin’ their coffins
top hats and tails
Fly away Rover
Fly away, flap your wings
Fly by night, like the early Roman kings

Yesterday, Rolling Stone unearthed an amazing video of Bob Dylan in 1985 rehearsing for the “We Are The World” recording, with Stevie Wonder as his vocal coach and piano player. Dylan spends nine minutes getting his line right.

“Is that sorta it? Sorta like that?” he probes.

Dylan is known as a one-take wonder, with an aversion to spending any extra time in the studio, so to watch him rehearse the same phrase over and over again is pretty fascinating.

For contrast, there’s this.

The AV Club recently visited Dylan’s hometown of Hibbing, Minnesota. View the video below.

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