MUSIC 2021

Suzi Quatro’s Favorite Album: Bob Dylan’s ‘Blonde on Blonde’

"Geminis can never coast easily down the road!"

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SUZI QUATRO: It is very hard to pick one favorite album, but if I stop and really think about it, this is the one I still play whenever I pause to listen to music.

I came to know Bob Dylan at the age of 14. We had gone to see an excellent New York psychedelic band in Detroit at the Chess Mate club called the Blues Magoos.  I ended up after the show talking to the bass player (I had just begun playing bass in my first band), and he played me this album. I totally and utterly fell in love.  Each song was a rich seam of unique ideas, unusual forms of rhymes, radical, touching, harsh, funny, and many times, as with a lot of Dylan’s songs … he has me crying unashamedly. He speaks such truth as in “Blowing in the Wind” … a much earlier song. I am a Dylan fanatic, always have been, always will be.

The standout songs on this double album, the 3rd in his trilogy of rock albums and a very unusual thing at that time, are:

“Rainy Day Women No. 12 & 35” — what a feel-good time, happy, but … listen to the message — it’s all about society not accepting you if you are different.

“I Want You” — I can imitate his voice very well, it is my party piece. This is one of my best efforts. He really goes into Dylan whine mode on this.

“Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again”– my top top song. I played this non-stop in my basement bedroom, digging into the lyrics, searching for their meaning, and just loving the way he said “oooooooh mama” differently every single time. This song is in my DNA forever.

“Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat” — I have covered this as a bonus track on the vinyl of my album No Control. Great song, and it is “not” what it appears to be. You have to read between the lines. It’s actually quite rude!

“Just Like a Woman” — I have covered this too, on the Quatro, Scott and Powell album. I am told by most people it’s one of my best vocals ever. Well, when you love a song this much you’re going to sing it great.  I love the message in this. It is one million percent me. I just don’t understand how romantic he can be, and so angry and at the same time. But I love him for it. We are both Geminis and we share our love of lyrics and the dichotomy of extreme emotions. Geminis can never coast easily down the road!

Bob Dylan clarified my love of writing lyrics. I have recently released during lockdown my illustrated coffee table size lyric book called Through My Words.  ❖

Suzi Quatro’s The Devil in Me album is out March 26.

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