Interview: Fredrik Wikingsson on Dylan…


There are few persons I know of, that know so much about Bob Dylan as this man. Impressive in knowledge in many areas, but particulary in this subject.

Fredrik Wikingsson is one part of the loved and hated duo that is Filip & Fredrik. With numerous tv-shows and podcasts, they have gathered fans and annoyed people all over our picky country.

We at Kentuckyseven follow the work of the duo in awe. They are witty, provocative and often out on a very thin ice, playing it hard. We love it.

I called Fredrik, in the middle of him being in a cellar, editing, to speak about Dylan, music and ask him how in hell…

First off, how did Dylan enter your life?

– Growing up, I listened almost only to sixties music, my father had a large collection of cassettes with Rolling Stones, Beatles and those bands but by then I never actually knew anything about Dylan. But one day in 1991, when I was 18, Swedish Television aired ”Don’t Look Back”, and I was knocked out, about how he could behave the way he did, he was so god damned modern, even though the movie was recorded thirty years earlier. The song ”The Times are a changing” is very present in the movie, and I thought it was so fucking great that I convinced my father to buy a Greatest hits album with me, and he did. After that, it was just to get on board. I bought all the 60-s records and that was that. I was hooked.

I started to slowly work my way forward, towards Oh Mercy (-89) and ”Under The Red Sky” (-90) and found out that they were also amazing albums, released just a few years before I saw the movie. It felt incredible.

What period would you say, was the greatest in Dylan’s music?

That is  not an easy question to answer, the expected answer, and that what will have to be my answer is of course January -65 to May -66, those fifteen months, what he did during that time, no man has ever done after that. Including himself. It is unreasonable, the things he does at that time. Touring, being ahead of his time, being booed at and doing drugs, almost killing himself, and of top of that releases that music. It is unbelievable.

The ”Freewheeling” period is also an amazing time, when he finds his voice, and the religious period is awesome as well. But concluding, I guess that it would be in that order, ”Highway 61”, ”Freewheeling” and the ”Religious” period.

What about now, as the man keeps releasing music, what is your impression of Dylan of 2011?

– I’ve seen Dylan perhaps fifteen times live, and have never been really impressed. I’d say it is impossible for him to live up to my expectations. The studiorecords, still holds their place, compared to seeing him live, and the bootleg recordings are incredible to listen to. He is an interesting man, his movies and his memoirs are unbelievable. The Chronicles, that is what you should read, if you want to read the best of Dylan.

If someone offered you, to go and have a drink with Bob, would you do it?

– I would, otherwise I would have spent the rest of my life, wondering what would have happened if I didn’t do it.

What would you talk about? Don’t you think he would be a very strange person to talk to?

I think so, he is probably pretty strange, but you would have to talk about strange things, like Confucius and that kind of stuff, not be starstruck and just talk about his work, and be amazed. I read an interview in Rolling Stone, made by a history professor, and the man is educated, and a really well-read person.

Speaking of well-read, how in hell do you remember all of those anecdotes about famous persons?

– I think both Filip and I have a common thing about those things, we love that kind of trivia. Like for instance, yesterday, I saw a two hour documentary about the atombomb, and I probably picked up something about Robert Oppenheimer. I think that I, or we, have a thing for when mythical persons end up in situations where they become more like the average man. The best thing about this, is that you can talk about Albert Speer and end up on Charlie Sheen, in the same sentence. That is a strength of ours.

When you are  in your car, what do you listen to, alone in the drivers seat?

– Right now, I am totally into Lucinda Williams, her latest album ”Blessed”, I have to say that all her records from -98 and up til today is incredible, she is probably one of the best artists there is today. Listen to the opening track of the new album, ”Buttercup”, and there you have the core of what makes me love her music so much.

Would you say that you are looking out for new music, do you keep up with whats up and coming?

– I don’t have the time anymore, working a lot, having kids, the music interest has had to stand back for that. I listen to one new album a month, perhaps. American tv-series, I watch a lot of those.

You need to visit Kentuckyseven, and get your inspiration to new music…

– I will do that (laughing).

Thanks for your time, hope that I didn’t take up time from your editing…

No problem, this was fun. Thanks.

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