With Hannukah in full swing and Christmas right around the corner, chances are you’re currently scrambling trying to come up with ideas of what to get for those special friends and family members in your life. The options of course are endless, but so are the possibilities of slipping up and securing a gift that’ll end up on the exchange rack by December 26. If you’re desperately hoping to avoid this fate for the classic rock lover in your life, fear not! I’ve put together a whole list of items guaranteed to turn this holiday all the way up to 11.
Bob Dylan — Trouble No More: The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981 (Deluxe Edition)
For decades, Bob Dylan’s so-called “gospel period” has been decried as one of the lower points of his lengthy, critically-adored career. While many will allow that Slow Train Coming, produced by Atlantic Records guru Jerry Wexler, is a fine album, the follow-ups, Saved and Shot Of Love usually receive a substantial share of vitriol. The latest entry into Dylan’s bootleg series flips that opinion on its ear. The music within, delivered by a truly crack live outfit, gives the maligned songs the power and heft that was missing from the official, studio-recorded output. While the two-disc edition for about $15 makes for a great gift, the real Dylan-head will go nuts for the full, 9-disc set, that includes recordings of two shows in their totality, a 120-page book, and a live DVD for $120. If you really want to up the ante, pitch in a copy of Dylan-biographer Clinton Heylin’s amazing chronicle of those years, Trouble In Mind.