There’s a bit of a twist to yesterday’s big Bob Dylan story about a poem handwritten by the legend when he was 16 being auctioned off by Christie’s for $10-15k: A reader alerted Reuters that the poem is almost exactly transcribed from country singer Hank Snow’s song by the same name, “Little Buddy.” The auction has been updated with this new information, but it will be interesting to see how this unfolds in the media today.
See, Dylan has been dogged by plagiarism accusations for most of his career. Even his recent albums Modern Times and Love and Theft have been revealed to have uncanny similarities to other works. You might think this misunderstanding about one of his earliest known works would drive the poem’s price down, but fans of the lauded songwriter may actually find this early evidence of Dylan’s open cribbing to be an even more revealing and interesting part of his creative process.
If he were really trying to maliciously steal from other artists, why does he get so easily caught? Looks like even the auction houses have gotten tangled up in Dylan’s games.