Black Rider…a bit of Dylan’s gallows humor?

Bob Dylan 1986 (Black and White)

By now, we’re all familiar with Bob Dylan’s new-ish song Black Rider, released on Rough and Rowdy Ways this June. It’s an interesting song, full of the usual picturesque yet vague lyrics that leave us wondering what he really intended to say — if he intended to say anything at all.

Here are the lyrics — from the site…

Ironically, however, one of the questions I ask in my presentation Deconstructing Murder Most Foul( is–since that song is so obviously conspiracy-oriented, does this mean his next song will be in support of the Warren Commission Report? Well, I should have known. He got ahead of me. It’s not a new song in the next album — it’s another song in R+RW.

U-huh. Black Rider.

You see, upon doing a bit of research, (with the help of a reply posted on a Dylan board somewhere), it turns out that there is a play called The Black Rider. It’s other name is — the Casting of the Magic Bullets.

The Magic Bullet theory was the bungee cord that tried to hold the Warren Commission Report together. It failed miserably — except to those willing to ‘believe’ what these ‘credible people’ told them. Here’s my paper on that…

To make matters even more interesting, this play is based on a folk story used by Carla Maria von Weber in his most famous opera Die Freischutz…the Marksman.

And, if the name ‘Weber’ rings a bell, think Constanze Weber, who married Wolfgang Mozart. She and Carla Maria were cousins…and if you think back, Constanze was not much of a friend to Wolfgang, as she insisted he write a Requium under someone else’s name because they needed the money, and then, after he died during the process, found someone to complete it in order to make money off of selling it. Lovely woman…

But that’s a story for another day.

So here we have in Dark Rider yet another connection to Mozart (lots in MMF) and a song possibly drawn from a play about magic bullets.

Nice work, Mr. Dylan

You keep us on our toes.


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