Down the Highway by Howard Sounes

Down the Highway

Based on three years of research, new documentary evidence, and interviews with 250 of Dylan's intimates -- many exclusive -- Down the Highway has gone beyond the scope of other accounts to become the most complete, authoritative biography of Bob Dylan now in print. It was praised by The Orlando Sentinel "for the insights it offers to Dylan at work ... from young upstart to grand old man of rock 'n' roll." Sounes's prodigious research has resulte...

Details Down the Highway

TitleDown the Highway
Release DateApr 12th, 2002
PublisherGrove Press
GenreMusic, Biography, Nonfiction, Biography Memoir, History, Audiobook, The United States Of America, Music Biography, Autobiography, Culture, Pop Culture

Reviews Down the Highway

  • Clif Hostetler
    This is a big book so it seems not much can be missing from it. The range of information contained in this book includes Dylan's second marriage and love child, his illness, his finances, court cases, his various residences, relationships, family, and idiosyncratic behavior that ranged being a loner to sexually promiscuous, sensitive to indifferent. And of course his professional career of composing songs, writing lyrics and performance are also ...
  • James Lundy
    I enjoyed reading "Down the Highway" not because it is a well-written book (it isn't) and not because Howard Sounes has any insights into the music of Bob Dylan (he doesn't). I enjoyed the book because this is the first biography of the man that gives the reader a feel for what it's like being Bob Dylan on a day-to-day, year-to-year basis. The three years of research that went into the biography focused more on "digging the dirt" on Dylan rather ...
  • Paulina
    The writer did a great job covering the beginning of Bob's life and fame, but at about the mid 70's he started losing his touch - or the book just got annoying. Yes, there's a lot of information, lots of 'I was with Bob so many years, so I will comment about this' stuff, but it lacks feeling. Where's Dylan the Joker? where's the poetry? Howard Sounes describes the many loves of Bob without any feelings - sometimes I felt as if I was reading a big...
  • Still
    This is possibly my all-time favorite Dylan bio.It's gossipy and deliciously so: how many children by how many different women do you think Bob has?Why did Bob Dylan start his own publishing company (Dwarf Music) in January of 1966 and how did he come to name it "Dwarf"?How many roads must a man walk down before he finds out what price you have to pay to get out of going through all "these things" twice?After reading this you'll find yourself una...
  • Ryan
    This book is for you if you care more about the tabloid biography, if you care, for instance, more about the women Dylan has bedded than the actual life events and experiences that inspired the artistic output of a master songwriter. You probably should pass on this book if you value the accuracy of little details like the ACTUAL setlist to his seminal Newport "Dylan-goes-electric" show. Sure he did play 'Mr. Tambourine Man' but isn't it more imp...
  • Mat
    This was a pretty good biography on Dylan and the first one I read on our 20th century bard. While the bio by Heylin is more detailed overall, there are some interesting stories in here about Dylan when he was growing up that did not appear in Behind the Shades. Sounes is also a lot less arrogant than Heylin but Heylin is undoubtedly a better biographer (even though I wish he would stop being so subjective in his analysis of Bob's albums). This i...
  • Michele bookloverforever
    After reading this, I feel very sorry for Mr.Dylan. He may be blessed with talent and money/property but it does not seem to have brought him happiness. He appears to be a very private person. The author does not appear to have interviewed either Mr. Dylan or his immediate family and is on the outside looking into a very complicated individual. But then, great artists are usually complicated. The respect this author has for Mr. Dylan's music is p...
  • KRKO
    This is an incredible introduction to the life and work of Bob Dylan. I knew some of his albums before reading this, but going through the book was an absolutely wonderful trip down the road of Dylan's inventive works and often tragic life.The research for this biography was thorough and in-depth (to the point of starting off talking about Dylan's distant ancestors) and goes through each one of his "phases" rather well. It's the only Dylan bio I'...
  • Eric Smith
    I recommend this book to the serious Dylan fan. In Down the Highway: The Life of Bob Dylan, Howard Sounes manages to capture Bob Dylan’s poetic and musical genius, from an unknown singer imitating Woodie Guthrie to multimillionaire recluse while leaving one wondering who the man is. Even with all the research, one gets the feeling of standing outside looking in. Perhaps we have to chalk that up to the nature of a subject who strove from the ear...
  • Evita
    When I saw this book on the bookstore I didn't really know why but I knew I had to buy this book, it was some kind of an instinct, I guess. At that time the only thing I knew about Bob Dylan was - he had written Knocking on Heaven's door . But now, after finishing this book I feel like I know everything about this great man/artist.I thought the story was brilliant. I am amazed by how the author could write all of this information without contac...
  • Walter
    of the three biographies of Dylan, it's the best I've read.
  • Angela Joyce
    I wonder what he thinks of this one, himself?
  • Dave Moyer
    Three is being kind. More paparazzi journalism than one might prefer, but Dylan fans will eat anything up, won't we?
  • Kristopher Pistole
    I've been a fan for years but never read a biography until now. Sounes' book is lengthy and full of about as much detail as one could hope. Though ,at times it can feel lacking in a lot of linear cohesion. Parts feel like years get distilled into a few paragraphs in between tours or recording sessions. But considering Dylan's so private that he was married for five years and no one except those very close to him knew about it, it's about as much ...
  • Dewayne Stark
    Yesterday I was helping my daughter move and in the new place there was a Dylan LP Cover already on the wall. I am two months older than Bod Dylan so I share his music and in the book their is a discussion about a coffee house on Broadway in Santa Monica where I grew up and the juke box has Sahoboom by the Cords on it which was my favorite song in junior high, there are several reference to James Dean and Rebel without a cause which was filmed at...
  • Felienne
    Very long read, I guess this is only enjoyable or interesting if you are really a fan, but since I am, I loved every part of it. Learned so much about Bob's relationships with Woody Guthrie, his shyness about media, his life with Sarah and wives after that. But the best discovery from the book is the Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues, a song that I did not know of before!
  • JW
    A very well researched life of Dylan. The author uncovers the details, but at times the book seems to be just a list of details. The most interesting part is from Dylan's birth through the Rolling Thunder Review. But then, that was the most interesting part of Dylan's life.
  • Michael Legge
    Shame he dies in the end.
  • Cojuja
    That book was definitely bad.
  • M. Wild
    I love biographies.
  • Kelly Smith
    I love Bob Dylan, so I gave it a 4 instead of 3. I learned a lot of information but was not a fan of the writing and he didn’t really go into depth about a lot of stuff.
  • Reza Kaihani
    He’s very gifted and he’s a walking encyclopedia of… [philosophy].
  • Diane Heath
    I found this to be very interesting and informative. I would stop reading and pull up the songs mentioned to listen.I think anyone who enjoys music would be appreciative of this book
  • André Markus Treffeisen
    RAZ would have been a better stage name.
  • Michael
    Mostly read it in the bathroom and my bowels have been flowing nicely.
  • Louise
    I really liked it and recommend it for writers at all levels.
  • Cortney Cassidy
    i don't know why i read the biography of bob dylan or named my goldfish bob dylan or used this book cover as a reference to paint bob dylan's portrait onto a stool
  • Dave Schwensen
    This was meant to be the definitive biography of Bob Dylan to mark his 60th birthday in 2001. In the years since, as he hit his 70th year and beyond, it still stands as an extremely well-researched and insightful look at a man who has done his best to remain mysterious and elusive as a celebrity, while keeping his private life shrouded in almost total secrecy.*For more than half a century Dylan’s songs have been listened to, shared, studied and...
  • Perry Whitford
    Down the Highway distinguishes itself from the hundredweight of Dylan biographies available on the market.This is because Sounes somehow managed to get the greatest number of first hand accounts from childhood friends, early lovers, allies and enemies from his formative years in Hibbing, Dinkeytown and Greenwich Village, at the same time doing the exhaustive "births deaths and marriages" paper chase which helped him to uncover some long-held secr...
  • Rick
    Sounes is a journalist turned biographer who writes serviceable prose and provides a balanced, if not insightful, survey of Dylan’s personal and professional lives. He boasts some new discoveries, marriage and birth date information for wives and children, that don’t add to whatever understanding the reader may have of Dylan from his work and the half century of media coverage he has garnered. Dylan is aloof and intensely private. Sounes cond...