“Nothing But the Whole Wide World” – Jakob Dylan


I can’t imagine what it was like growing up in the musical shadow of Bob Dylan.  And, then to have the courage to follow in his footsteps and carve out your own successful artistic path – what pressure.  The comparisons were inevitable and the stakes so high that it would have been easy to fail or give up.  It also is a lot to expect that songwriting talent at this level would exist in more than one person in a family. Yet Jakob Dylan persevered and his career to date clearly stands on its own merit.

His songs are easy to listen to yet often profound in their meaning.  I often find myself drifting away when I hear them and blocking everything else out.  Instead of merely serving as background music to whatever is taking place they demand more attention.   Like his dad, he is as much of a storyteller as songwriter and you want to hear the story and/or catch the vibe.  He truly is a special talent.  Dad must be very proud.

I chose the song “Nothing But The Whole World” because I believe it is one of his best.   I’ve always felt that the best songwriters can easily make a living with just their own talent and a guitar (or other instrument).  They can walk in any bar or concert hall and immediately capture your attention. The music sounds best when it is raw and pure.  There is no need for excessive noise or production.   The video I found is of him playing in an office environment at NPR and it sounds great.  I hope you enjoy the moment.

Nothing but the whole wide world to gain 
nothing, nothing 
Got nothing but the whole wide world to gain 
nothing, nothing 
Got nothing but the whole wide, whole wide world to gain

I’m here on the blacktop 
The sun in my eyes 
Women and country on my mind 
Bolting me out 
Over the borderline

Now there’s no more love loss and no more shame 
No more digging holes or graves 
Nothing to lose but rivets and chains 
Got nothing but the whole wide world to gain

Nothing but the whole wide world to gain 
nothing, nothing 
Got nothing but the whole wide world to gain 
nothing, nothing 
Got nothing but the whole wide, whole wide world to gain

Was born in a stable and built like an ox 
Down in the pastures I learned how to walk 
Mama, she raised me to sing and just let ’em talk 
Said no rich man’s worth his weight in dust 
Bury him down same as they’ll do us 
God wants us busy, never giving up 
He wants nothing but the whole wide world for us

Nothing but the whole wide world for us 
nothing, nothing 
Well there’s nothing but the whole wide world for us 
nothing, nothing 
Well there’s nothing but the whole wide, whole wide world for us

We ain’t got no money, can’t get no love 
Never was too good at either of ’em 
I’m here for adventure whichever way it comes 
But what good is an angel that won’t catch up 
Free falling now and I’m ready enough 
I give my tears and I give my blood 
I give nothing but the whole wide world for one

Nothing but the whole wide world for one 
nothing, nothing 
Give nothing but the whole wide world for one 
nothing, nothing 
Give nothing but the whole wide, whole wide world for one

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About robined

Ed Robinson is an Executive Coach, Management Consultant, Teacher, Writer and Music Lover.
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