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Has Bob Dylan’s ‘Shadows’ album been delayed?

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Last May, there was a surprise post on Bob Dylan’s official website - A new recording, with Dylan covering “Full Moon & Empty Arms,” a song most closely associated with Frank Sinatra. The album artwork for an album, "Shadows In The Night," was also posted. The next day, a fan alerted me to some alleged embedded code which included album cover artwork with the added caption, “Available Aug. 26th,” so I wrote an article based on this interesting, but unconfirmed, information.

The next hint came in mid-July, when the website “Entertainment Business (NL)” listed the following on its “Muziekreleases van 18 juli t/m 29 augustus” page, where it remains today:

Een overzicht van de belangrijkste muziekreleases van 18 juli tot en met 29 augustus. Met onder meer nieuwe albums en re-releases van Bob Dylan, Finntroll, Elvis Presley, Ozark Henry, The Magic Numbers en Maroon 5.

Google translate: An overview of the most important music releases of 18 July to 29 August. Including new albums and re-releases of Bob Dylan, Finntroll, Elvis Presley, Ozark Henry, The Magic Numbers and Maroon 5.

  • 22 augustus: Bob Dylan - Shadows In The Night - Sony (cd)

The European street date is often a few days earlier than the U.S. one. The only album cover artwork on the page is for the Dylan album.

However, since then, we’ve heard nothing. No track listing, nothing official from Sony. Lots of speculation, but nothing concrete. Too much of nothing, as it were.

Of course, most Dylan news is often shrouded in mystery, and my attempts of getting information had lead no naught (although some people obviously know something, as I can tell by their non-answers!).

Apparently, the album had been put on hold, at least for now. I am not the only one who has come to this conclusion. According to an August 15 post on Alan Fraser’s “Searching For A Gems: News” page:

The release date of Bob's new album “Shadows In The Night “ … is not going to be 26 Aug 2014 as previously suggested. I have heard from several sources that the album is not on Sony Music's autumn schedules, so may be delayed until the New Year.

If a physical product was to be release later this month, retailers would most likely have been informed by now, so that everything from advertising to securing stock would have been arranged.

The only other thing I can think of would be if Dylan pulled a Beyonce, and the album just “dropped” on iTunes without fanfare, with the physical product rushed out later:

On December 13, 2013, Beyoncé unexpectedly released her self-titled fifth studio album on the iTunes Store without any prior promotion ... The album debuted atop the Billboard 200 chart, giving Beyoncé her fifth consecutive number-one album in the US ... Beyoncé received critical acclaim and commercial success, selling one million digital copies worldwide in six days; 'The New York Times' noted the album's unconventional, unexpected release as significant

This, of course, is pure speculation. Actually, it’s not even speculation. It’s just something that crossed my mind, and I thought I‘d share. Maybe even start a rumor!

Speaking of new releases, the soundtrack for the critically acclaimed Richard Linklater film, "Boyhood," includes Bob Dylan's "Beyond The Horizon," along with tracks by Jeff Tweedy, Paul McCartney & Wings, Coldplay, Arcade Fire, and the Flaming Lips, among others. Dylan's guitarist, Charlie Sexton, appears in the movie.

Speaking of Frank Sinatra, Sex Pistol Sid Vicious's cover version of "My Way" is being used as the soundtrack of a new Acura TV ad.

Now onto more pressing matters, like the new Taylor Swift video.

Keep up with Bob Dylan Examiner news. Just click on Subscribe above, or follow @DylanExaminer on Twitter. Harold Lepidus also writes the Performing Arts column for Examiner.com. Thanks for your support.

Of the dozens of Dylan Internet sites … Expecting Rain … and the examiner.com Bob Dylan blog by Harold Lepidus are the best places for up-to-the-minute Dylan news - David Kinney, “The Dylanologists: Adventures in the Land of Bob.” (Simon & Schuster, 2014)

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