Greil Marcus

Greil Marcus collection of essays The Dustbin of History will be published by Picador in January. He is working on a study of Bob Dylan’s basement tapes.

Time Longer than Rope

Greil Marcus, 16 November 1995

‘Lo and Behold!’ opens on the rails, the first notes on the piano setting the wheels in motion, the singer with one foot on the platform and the other foot on the train as it pulls out within the room. It’s the summer of 1967, in the basement of Big Pink, a couple of months into fooling with old tunes, moving across a common landscape, new songs now coming in a rush; almost three decades later, you can still hear Garth Hudson snap the switch.

You could catch it

Greil Marcus, 25 March 1993

On 22 February 1991, a small ad appeared in the Times Literary Supplement. Running in French, just below the much larger announcement of a ‘Search for the Director of the Bancroft Library’ at the University of California at Berkeley, the ad read:

Dry-Cleaned: ‘The Manchurian Candidate’

Tom Vanderbilt, 21 August 2003

There is no evidence that Lee Harvey Oswald saw The Manchurian Candidate, which was released in 1962, a year before Kennedy’s assassination. A more plausible cinematic influence on him is

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Uncle Vester’s Nephew

Graham Coster, 27 February 1992

A few years ago I met Elvis Presley’s Uncle Vester. Cross the road from Graceland, Elvis’s smallish mansion in Memphis, and you enter the large museum-and-souvenirs complex where you...

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Jerome McGann, 22 June 1989

Around 529 BC the armies of the Persian Empire tried to conquer a mysterious and reclusive people who lived somewhere to the east of the Caspian Sea – to this day we do not know exactly...

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