Wednesday, August 26, 2009
This album was recorded in 1957 for Decca. Nick Lucas was a singer/songwriter back when they called them "troubadours". His career spanned from 1922-1980. He was a skilled guitar player, and Gibson honored him by making a guitar for him and calling it "The Nick Lucas Special". Bob Dylan bought a Nick Lucas guitar in 1963 and played it almost exclusively until 1966.
Bob had probably heard all about Nick Lucas from his friend Tiny Tim, who had adopted Lucas' song "Tiptoe Through The Tulips With Me" as his theme song. Tim's outrageously falsetto delivery gave a false impression that Tim was making fun of that sort of old-timey sentimental song, but he was a genuine fan of Nick's and grew up listening to him on the family victrola. Nick even performed the song at Tiny Tim's wedding on the Tonight Show.
Nick's guitar playing is what stands out for me on this record. A real fine picker. I imagine an original Nick Lucas Special guitar is worth quite a bit nowadays. I'd like to have one because they're smaller and would probably be easier to learn on.
An archive of Nick's original 78s is here:
Bob Dylan with his Nick Lucas Special
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