Virtually all the reviews, comments, and information originally provided here were based on information previously posted, but scattered through a variety of sites. Quite of few of these sites are no longer accessible. I have often edited this material freely and heavily, often summarizing and paraphrasing it. I have corrected whatever errors I noted, and updated whatever statements struck me as outdated; whatever inaccuracies now exist should be presumed my responsibility. (On the other hand, I have tried to leave subjective judgments intact, especially when different reviewers have disagreed!) I have also imposed my own rules of style, to make it read as consistently as is practical. In short, most of this information amounts to an unauthorized digest of other reviews.
The guide has evolved considerably since its original appearance, and a significant amount of the additional material was contributed by the guide's readers and users. In general, this material is not specifically credited, because virtually no one appreciates prominent public announcements about their collections of field recordings. [Indeed, I have received many more requests to remove identifications from previously available material than to add credits, and attempt to comply with such requests expeditiously.]
I have collected most of the remaining information, which now forms the bulk of the Guide, by scouring auction listings, message boards, dealer sites, publicly and privately posted trade lists, artwork sites, and sites devoted to other artists. Some information from dealer listings is generally regarded as requiring confirmation; in particular, while there are one or two conspicuous exceptions, most dealer listings do not reliably distinguish between glass-mastered CDs and CDRs.
The principal sources used in this guide, for reviews, comments, etc., are:
CDG -- From one or more of the no-longer-maintained web guides to unauthorized Dylan CDs (including a few entries from detailed tradelists). (However, comments from DylanBase are treated as the equivalent of rmd postings, because that mostly unmoderated guide allows anyone to post reviews.)
DEEP -- Excerpted from the virtually comprehensive and indispensible reviews posted as "DEEP BENEATH THE WAVES," archived in full length at
Expecting Rain; a small number of comments are taken from the reviewer's postings to rmd before he began using the DEEP format. This site will, I hope, soon provide direct links to each excerpted review.
EDLIS -- Refers to all postings on rmd on behalf of, or from the resources of, this eminent organization, as well as from various EDLIS-affiliated sites. For the moment, this includes the dbdbdb, which has requested specific credits. As I figure out which comments are derived from their site, the credits will be revised.
ISIS -- The long-running Dylan fan magazine. Its website is maintained at Breadcrumb Sins. Because ISIS' CD reviewer is marketing his valuable compilation of reviews and other information, I have excerpted only those reviews which have been posted at the ISIS site or otherwise made freely available.
rmd -- Information taken from postings to rec.music.dylan which do not fall into any other listed category. The name used by the poster is sometimes given in (parentheses) after the text, sometimes as initials. A number of these items were taken from several after-the-fact web archives, and may be a bit dated. This tag also identifies comments taken from
other, typically unmoderated and publicly accessible message boards, most notably including DylanBase, a valuable website which includes a track-based search engine that can complement this Guide.
Heylin -- Abstracted from the published writing of Clinton Heylin, most often from Bootleg: The Secret History Of The Other Recording Industry.
Unidentified comments are likely mine; a few pass on generic information from other sources (e.g., "This CD plays too fast"; "This CD is sourced from mp3s.").
I want to thank Dave and Tina for their valuable assistance with many of the images used on early versions this site; without their help, the graphics would have proved unmanageable. I heartily recommend their Dylan picture site, Bob Dylan '02. Of late, I've managed to handle the graphics myself, though in not so accomplished a fashion, and you should certainly infer that the less attractive thumbnail conversions are not their work.(and are usually mine).
I have never purchased, or otherwise provided anything of value for, a commercial "bootleg" CD; I intend never to do so. I own none. This is not to say that I am unwilling to review copies of such material which have been made without authorization
from, or compensation to, the original bootlegger . . .