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Dylan still some way off retirement

Bob Dylan is back in the studio working on a new album, his 476th. Okay, it’s actually only his 34th studio album, which considering he has been in the business for more than half a century, is a bit slack. Buck your ideas up man.

Dylan’s last album was 2009’s frankly bizarre collection of Christmas songs, which at least suggested the old folk troubadour was getting playful in his old age. The Aspen Times reports that he has been working on new material in a Los Angeles studio owned by singer-songwriter Jackson Browne.

Regular Dylan collaborator David Hidalgo, of Los Lobos, told the paper that he had been involved with the recording sessions. "It was a great experience," he said. "And different. Each one has been different, all completely different approaches. It's an amazing thing, how he keeps creativity. I don't see how he does it."

Hidalgo brought along his accordion and a Mexican stringed instrument called a Tres. "He would say, 'Wow, what's that?" said Hidalgo. "He liked the sound. So we'd get it in there." Dylan fanatics will immediately start fantasising about a return to some of the Latin sounds that featured on the classic Desire album.

While they wait, Dylan fans can content themselves with the charity album Chimes Of Freedom: Songs Of Bob Dylan honouring 50 Years Of Amnesty International in which an eclectic collection of contemporary artists cover their favourite Dylan tunes (warning: this album features Adele). The pick of a motley bunch is probably The Gaslight Anthem’s stirring version of Changing Of The Guard.

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