News Roundup: Bob Dylan, Gillian Welch, Joseph Arthur

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Come gather ’round people, wherever you roam.

Bob Dylan has taken to his web site to write a lengthy note to his “fans and followers,” explaining that his recent concerts in China were not censored, as had been widely reported. Well, forget about this then.

“As far as censorship goes,” Dylan writes, “the Chinese government had asked for the names of the songs that I would be playing. There’s no logical answer to that, so we sent them the set lists from the previous 3 months. If there were any songs, verses or lines censored, nobody ever told me about it and we played all the songs that we intended to play.”

Dylan turns 70 on May 24. Check out Red House Records’ tribute album A Nod To Bob 2, featuring John Gorka, Hot Tuna, Lucy Kaplansky and more here.

A new album from roots music darling Gillian Welch, dubbed The Harrow and the Harvest, is slated to be released June 28 on Acony Records. It’s Welch’s first album since 2003’s autobiographical Soul Journey. She last appeared as a guest vocalist on The Decemberists’ 2010 album The King Is Dead. Her web site has some new tour dates posted, including some opening slots for the reunited Buffalo Springfield in June. Look for our feature on Welch and The Harrow and the Harvest in the July/August issue of American Songwriter.

Singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur’s new album, The Graduation Ceremony, is currently streaming on NPR Music ahead of its May 24 release date. It’s his first solo album since 2006’s Nuclear Daydream, and the followup to and follow up to Fistful of Mercy, his 2010 collaboration with Ben Harper and Dhani Harrison. Beginning June 12, Arthur will perform for ten straight nights at The Living Room in New York City. He’ll also be performing at Pearl Jam’s 20th Anniversary Festival on Labor Day weekend in East Troy, Wisconsin, on a bill which will also feature Queens of the Stone Age, Mudhoney, Glenn Hansard and the Strokes.


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