Bob Dylan's influence on popular music is incalculable. As a songwriter, he pioneered several different schools of pop songwriting, from confessional singer/songwriter to winding, hallucinatory, stream-of-consciousness narratives. As a vocalist, he broke down the notion that a singer must have a conventionally good voice in order to perform, thereby redefining the vocalist's role in popular music. As a musician, he sparked several genres of pop music, including electrified folk-rock and country-rock. And that's just the tip of his achievements. Dylan's force was evident enough during his height of popularity in the 1960s -- the Beatles' shift toward introspective songwriting in the mid-'60s never would have happened without him -- but his influence echoed throughout several subsequent generations, as many of his songs became popular ...
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