With albums being delayed, studios shut down, and festivals canceled the coronavirus pandemic is hitting the established music scene pretty hard. But if there's any silver lining, it has given an unprecedented opportunity for the new generation of indie artists and bedroom musicians to take over the charts with their fresh, raw sound. And for one of these new names this upheaval has already netted him his first number one hit; an up-and-comer named Bob Dylan.
While we didn't see this coming when signal boosting his YouTube song, Bobby Dylan has just topped a Billboard chart for the first time in his career. His single, 'A Murder Most Foul', became the number one hit on Billboard's Rock Digital Song Sales (a minor accolade, but a promising start) after it sold 10,000 downloads and racked up 2.8 million YouTube views in one week. And while Dylan's burgeoning style borrows heavily from indie legends like Father John Misty and Wilco, as a 17-minute long half-spoken word diatribe filled with dated pop culture references, the experimental 'A Murder Most Foul' is also unlike anything else you've ever heard before.
More important than the song is the mysterious man behind the music who's sure to take the music scene by storm. As far as we can tell, Dylan (pronounced "Die-lan") tried being an actor before a series of flops forced him to permanently fall back on his music career in the mid-aughts. Also, this isn't the bedroom musician's first brush with Billboard fame. Like any ingenue, his previous chart-toppers were performed by bigger bands like Peter, Paul & Mary and The Byrds, and some of his lesser-known works such as Like a Rolling Stone, Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 and Things Have Changed just failed to hit the top spot.
But with his first number one, Dylan has finally reached the big leagues. He has even gotten a shout-out by Nick Cave who called 'A Murder Most Foul' "a perplexing but beautiful song," which has to be very exciting for someone new to the scene like Dylan. And who knows what's next? A featured verse on the next Billy Ray Cyrus album? A Twitter feud with Cardi B? With this kind of hit debut, the sky's the limit for this 78-year-old rising star.
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Top Image: Raph_PH/Wiki Commons