Vermonters search for their inner Bob Dylan

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(Host) A Montpelier record store is looking for people who can growl, yowl, grumble and mumble. On Saturday, a group of contestants will get into the right clothes and then step up to the microphone to create their own Bob Dylan impersonation.

VPR’s Neal Charnoff got a preview.

(Charnoff) Patrick Muliken is the proprietor of the vintage LP store, and says it might sound something like this: (Sound of Muliken singing, “Girl From the North Country”)

While Muliken is not a contestant, he says the time is right to pay tribute to Dylan’s 50-odd years as a music icon.

(Muliken) “The idea for this sort of stemmed from the fact that there are so many Elvis impersonators and wanna-be’s. So that’s the genesis of our contest, was to pay homage to a guy who I believe you either love or hate or at the same time can love and hate this man, and lends himself to great parody. Even his own singing in the later years, I think, is a parody of the way he used to sound.”

(Charnoff) For Dylan wanna-be’s, Patrick Muliken recommends studying another American icon.

(Muliken) “The famous Bob Dylan yowl, which is pretty much in every song he writes or every song he sings, he tends to do a lot of screaming and drawing out a certain word. And I always thought about, Lucille Ball used to do that routine on I Love Lucy where she would go ‘oo-uuuoo,’ and Dylan uses the ‘oo-uuuoo’ quite frequently in many of his songs.”

(Charnoff) Muliken says there will be six judges for the competition. So far, 15 pseudo-Dylan’s have signed up for the event.

(Muliken) “We’re not looking so much for somebody who looks like Bob Dylan or somebody who sounds exactly like Bob Dylan. What we’re looking for is somebody who can capture the spirit of Bob Dylan, and that’s why we’ve opened the contest both to men and women. Of those 15 entrants we have eleven men and four women – eleven Bobs and four Bobettes, as we’re calling them.”

(Charnoff) The Bob Dylan look-alike/sound-alike contest will take place at Riverwalk Records on State Street in Montpelier, Saturday at 7 pm. The contestants are hoping to come close to something well, like this:

(Bob Dylan singing, “It Ain’t Me Babe”)

For Vermont Public Radio, I’m Neal Charnoff.

(Host) In our story, we heard Dylan by Patrick Muliken, Dylan by Drew Stone, Dylan by Emily Murphey… and Dylan by Dylan.

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