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The Byrds - Mr. Tambourine Man (LP)


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Label: Music On Vinyl – MOVLP199
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Reissue
Released: Mar 22, 2012
Genre: Rock, Pop
Style: Folk Rock


Mr. Tambourine Man is the debut studio album by the American rock band the Byrds and was released on June 21, 1965, by Columbia Records. The album is characterized by the Byrds' signature sound of Roger McGuinn's 12-string Rickenbacker guitar and the band's complex harmony singing. The material on the album mostly consists of cover versions of folk songs, primarily composed by Bob Dylan, and originals written or co-written by singer Gene Clark. Along with the Dylan-penned single of the same name, Mr. Tambourine Man established the band as an internationally successful act and is widely regarded by critics as representing the first effective American challenge to the chart dominance of the Beatles and other British Invasion bands during the mid-1960s.

The album was also influential in popularizing the musical subgenre known as folk rock, by melding intelligent lyrical content with electric guitars and a rock backbeat. The term "folk rock" was first coined by the American music press to describe the Byrds' sound in mid-1965, around the same time that the Mr. Tambourine Man album was released. The band's hybrid of a British Invasion beat, jangly guitar playing, and poetic or socially conscious lyrics influenced a number of acts in the mid-1960s and has also been influential on successive generations of musicians.

The album peaked at number 6 on the Billboard Top LPs chart and reached number 7 in the United Kingdom. It is the band's most successful album on either chart. The "Mr. Tambourine Man" single was released ahead of the album in April 1965 and reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart. A second single, "All I Really Want to Do", also a Dylan cover, was moderately successful in the U.S., but fared better in the UK, where it reached the top ten.

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