Born Robert Zimmerman, Bob Dylan came from humble beginnings in small town Minnesota. He took his last name from poet Dylan Thomas while playing coffeehouses during his college years. His career has spanned more than 40 years, and yet it is still difficult to classify his music. Many of his best known albums are undisputed rock and roll classics, yet it was his brilliant style of songwriting that made him a folk music icon. It has been said that the Beatles’ shift toward an introspective musical style would never have happened without his influence. Some of his best known albums include, “The Freewheelin’”, “Mixed up Confused”, “Talking John Birch Society Blues” , “Blowin’ in the Wind”, “Bringing it all back home” and “Knockin on Heaven’s Door”. In 1993, Dylan’s “World Gone Wrong” album won “Best Folk Album.” In that same year, his album “Time out of Mind” received Three Grammy nominations. In recent years, Dylan ventured into film with the self-titled piece, DYLAN, featuring an all-star cast. The accompanying soundtrack, “Masked and Anonymous” has been well-received and helped him recruit a new generation of fans. Now 64, Dylan continues to mesmerize his audiences with his haunting lyrics and distinct sound.
The musical talent and songwriting skills of Merle Haggard are hard to match. Not surprisingly, his work over the past four decades earned him a place in the Country Music Hall of Fame. Now 67, Haggard has a vast songbook of such enduring tunes as “Mama Tried,” “The Bottle Let Me Down”, and “Workin’ Man Blues.” He has also recently recorded an album entitled, “Unforgettable”, a compilation of his favorite Standards. Though classified as an innovator in country music, Haggard has a distinctive style consisting of country, jazz, blues, and folk making him the perfect touring mate for Bob Dylan.