Bob Dylan won’t be attending the Nobel Prize banquet on December 10 in Stockholm. He’s made that pretty clear from the beginning. But that doesn’t mean he won’t be giving a speech. According to the Nobel Prize’s Twitter, Dylan has provided a speech to be read at the ceremony when they announce his Literature prize.
“Bob Dylan (#NobelPrize in Literature 2016) has provided a speech which will be read at the Nobel banquet in Stockholm December 10,” the committee wrote. If we’re lucky, the speech will just be Jakob Dylan holding up cue cards full of nonsense.
There’s no word yet on who will read Dylan’s speech, but the committee did announce who will be performing in Dylan’s stead and it would be disrespectful to consider her a consolation. No less a performer than Patti Smith will play “A Hard Rain’s A Gonna Fall” in Bob’s place.
Smith explained her decision to play the Dylan tune in a statement to Rolling Stone.
“I chose ‘A Hard Rain’ because it is one of his most beautiful songs. It combines his Rimbaudian mastery of language with a deep understanding of the causes of suffering and ultimately human resilience…I have been following him since I was a teenager, half a century to be exact.His influence has been broad and I owe him a great debt for that. I had not anticipated singing a Bob Dylan song on December 10th, but I am very proud to be doing so and will approach the task with a sense of gratitude for having him as our distant, but present, cultural shepherd.”
And to those of you who might be upset at the somewhat lackadaisical stance that Dylan has taken on his prize win — or the folks out there who are still fuming over Dylan receiving the honor in the first place — here’s a friendly reminder that Robert Allan Zimmerman owes you and yours a heaping helping of nothing.