flag uk TARANTULA, BY BOB DYLAN

    Tarantula is an experimental prose poetry collection, written in 1965 and 1966, widely bootleged and partially published by some undergrounds magazines in the late 60's-early 70's, till it was officially published in 1971. It employs stream of consciousness writing, somewhat in the style of Jack Kerouac, William S. Burroughs, and Allen Ginsberg. One section of the book parodies the Lead Belly song Black Betty. Reviews of the book liken it to his self-penned liner notes to two of his albums recorded around the same time, Bringing It All Back Home and Highway 61 Revisited.
    Dylan would later cite Tarantua as a book he had never fully signed up to write: 'Things were running wild at that point. It never was my intention to write a book.' He went on to equate the book to John Lennoln's nonsensical work In His Own Write, and implied that his former manager Albert Grossman signed up Dylan to write the novel without the singer's full consent... Although it was to be edited by Dylan and published in 1966, his motorcycle accident in July '66 prevented this.
    Numerous bootleg versions of the book were available on the black market through 1971, when it was officially published to critical scorn.

 

1) TARANTULA BOOTLEG EDITIONS:

tarantula bootleg weberman Bob Dylan book    tarantula bootleg weberman Bob Dylan book sheets loose pages A Dylanological introduction to Tarantula, by A.J. Weberman, Dylanologist 'A Dylanological introduction to Tarantula, by A.J. Weberman, Dylanologist'.
TARANTULA, by Bob Dylan, bootleg edition, 76 pages. Early bootleg of the advance copy of Tarantula by Bob Dylan, printed and distributed in the East Village in NY sometime between 1967-1970  by A.J. Weberman. This edition was not stapled: the pages are loose, 38 sheets enclosed in a file folder which is rubber stamped in ink, 'Bob Dylan Tarantula'. The text is printed on one side only, in two columns numbered from 7 to 76.

This edition includes two items that do not exist in any other bootlegs:

     1) 'D.L.F. Buffalo Position Paper - This two sided essay (yellow page) written by Mike Drobenaire, self proclaimed 'D.L.F. Yippie', outlines the beliefs and goals of the D.L.F. (Dylan Liberation Front). The end of the position paper contains contact information for the D.L.F. at the State University of Buffalo.

     2) 'A Dylanological Introduction to Tarantula'  [see above] - This essay, written and signed by Weberman in facsimile (with a hand correction in pen), offers an introduction to Tarantula from Weberman's unique perspective. He discusses 'Dylanological' symbolism in the book, and even gets into his 'garbology' analysis. Weberman is out to lunch in this introduction, touching on topics ranging from Dylan's "late-night suicidal motorcycle accident" to the prescription bottle Weberman found in Dylan's garbage, to a request to contact him "if anyone knows how I can get a sample of Dylan's urine".

tarantula bootleg zimmerman Bob Dylan book front       tarantula bootleg zimmerman Bob Dylan book back back    TARANTULA BY ROBERT ZIMMERMAN, stamped "by Robert Zimmerman", bootleg edition, 1969, UK, Compendium Books, London. The first edition was sold at The Isle of Wight festival, among other places. White stapled wraps and mimeographed sheets in black ink, repeatedly stamped “TARANTULA by ROBERT ZIMMERMAN” on the front and the back in red, black and blue inks, 56 pages.

tarantula bootleg zimmerman stamped with interview Bob Dylan book front   tarantula bootleg zimmerman stamped with interview Bob Dylan book page #1 (printed in brown or black)
same, bootleg edition late 1969 / 1970, UK, A4 size, no publisher's name, 61 printed pages.
This edition includes an interview of Bob Dylan by Jann Wenner published in Rolling Stone 29 November 1969.

Below are alternate stampings: as they were hand stamped, all the covers were different:

tarantula bootleg zimmerman stamped Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman blue red stamped Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate 2 stamped Bob Dylan booktarantula bootleg zimmerman Bob Dylan alternate book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate #2 Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate stamped 5 Bob Dylan book    tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate stamped 1 Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate stamped 2 Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate stamped 3 Bob Dylan book   tarantula bootleg zimmerman alternate stamped 4 Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman stamped with interview alternate Bob Dylan book      tarantula bootleg zimmerman stamped with interview alternate Bob Dylan book ...and more...

tarantula bootleg  wriptoff Bob Dylan book blank front cover    tarantula bootleg  wriptoff inner Bob Dylan book inner page   same, bootleg edition. UK, Wriptoff Books Edition From London, blank gloss card cover, 78 pages.

tarantula bootleg edition Bob Dylan book same, no information

tarantula a fragmentary novel booklegger yellow cover Bob Dylan book   tarantula a fragmentary novel booklegger Bob Dylan book alternate colours   TARANTULA - A FRAGMENTARY NOVEL, by Bob Dylan, bootleg edition, Booklegger Press 1970. Inside page states: 'Tarantula is the first publication of Booklegger – a small profit organisation. Of this edition 500 copies were printed at an underground location in Albion – October 1970'. (Thank you Paula Radice for the information).

tarantula bootleg wimp press Bob Dylan book same, bootleg edition, Wimp Press, Hibbing, Minnesota USA 1970, 54 pages. Noted on the cover: "Author's royalties for the sale of this book are being donated to the Caladan Free School. Publisher's profit will contribute to the furtherance of Woodstock Nation"

tarantula bootleg wimp press Bob Dylan alternate book same, bootleg edition, Wimp Press, USA 1971, 2nd edition, 1000 copies

tarantula bootleg clay wilson Bob Dylan book   tarantula bootleg clay wilson Bob Dylan book alternate same, bootleg edition, different colours, bootleg edition, USA 1971. AJ Weberman produced edition with cover by underground cartoonist S. Clay Wilson

tarantula bootleg white press Bob Dylan book   tarantula bootleg white press 1970 Bob Dylan book    same, bootleg edition, White Press, Amsterdam 1970, 79 pages, alternate colours

tarantula bootleg white press Bob Dylan book 1971    tarantula bootleg white press Bob Dylan book 1971 alternate  same, bootleg edition, White Press Amsterdam 1971, 79 pages, alternate colours

tarantula bootleg white press 1971 alternate Bob Dylan book same, bootleg edition, White Press, Amsterdam 1971, 79 pages

tarantula bootleg 61 pages Bob Dylan book same, bootleg edition, no information, 61 pages

tarantula bootleg edition, Madison, Wi., 1971 Bob Dylan book    tarantula bootleg edition, Madison, Wi., 1971 Bob Dylan book alternate colour same, bootleg edition, different colours, bootleg edition, Madison, Wi., 1971. A5, stapled, 96 pages.  

tarantula bootleg 61 pages Bob Dylan book same, bootleg edition, 61 pages. The cover is a wraparound. The actual book part is 28cm x 22cm and the cover is twice that size (28cm x 44 cm). The card cover, which is cream-coloured and non-glossy, is folded round the text pages and then secured with two staples. Thank you to Ian Woodward for the scan and details.

tarantula other bootleg edition Bob Dylan book same, bootleg edition, no information. Better scan requested.

 

2) TARANTULA PARTIAL PUBLICATIONS:
Apart from the complete bootleg editions, some underground magazines published extracts of Bob Dylan's book:

Bob Dylan book tarantula bootleg extract in magazine Region 5 In its last issue (undated, may be 1967), the magazine REGION 5 includes the first chapter from Bob Dylan's TARANTULA; however in a form somewhat different from the published text. Titled in the book: 'Guns, the Falcon's Mouthbook & Gashcat Unpunished' the chapter appears here under the title: 'Guns, the Falcon's Notebook & Gasheat Unpunished' (the second alteration at least, presumably a typo).

Bob Dylan book tarantula bootleg extract in georgia straight 2-9 December 1970, Canada, 15 pages, supplement of the magazine GEORGIA STRAIGHT, selected parts of Dylan's book. See more here.

tarantula bootleg hot cha! Bob Dylan book HOTCHA!, publication produced in Switzerland by Urban Gwerder, reproduced in 1971 the pages from GEORGIA STRAIGHT for 2-9 December 1970 (Pages 2 – 12 and page 14), with an extract of the Jann Wenner interview where Dylan mentions Tarantula, and a brief commentary in German.

tarantula bootleg broadside Bob Dylan book Unknown date (1971?). BROADSIDE magazine handbill with an extract of the book.

 

3) TARANTULA OFFICIAL PUBLICATIONS:

tarantula first edition Bob Dylan book uncorrected proof TARANTULA, by Bob Dylan, Macmillan, 1966 uncorrected proof, 68 pages. These proofs - of which only "a few copies" were produced, according to publisher Macmillan's press release - are dated 3 July, 1966 ("376"). A copy, offered for sale ($10,000) in November 2013 wears "pub. date: August 1966 Price: $3.95 (tent.)" in holograph ink at the top of the front cover. The proofs were printed five years before the book was actually published. Read more about it: www.booktryst.com 

tarantula Bob Dylan book galley 1   tarantula Bob Dylan book galley 2
Macmillan original galley or printing proof. The text is the same, but there is more text on each page than released. It is said that the first bootleg editions were made after galley photocopies like this one; 78 pages, probably with plastic ringbound. (information Magne Karlstad)

Unused dust jacket proof for the original hardcover edition of Tarantula
Unused dust jacket proof for the original hardcover edition of Tarantula, circa 1966


Tarantula macmillan 1971 usa Bob Dylan book
First official publication: The Macmillan Company, NY, 1971, original copyright 1966, hardback, 137 pages

Tarantula macmillan 1971 taiwan Bob Dylan book
Taiwan 1971, 'Macmillan', 1st pressing, hardcover. This is probably a pirate edition, only legal in Taiwan when published
Tarantula macmillan 1971 uk Bob Dylan book
MacGibbon & Kee, London 1971, 138 pages, hardback

Tarantula Bantam Books NY Bob Dylan book
NY, Bantam Books June 1972, 149 pages, paperback, No ISB
Tarantula panther 1972 Bob Dylan book
Panther Books 1972, 124 pages, paperback. ISBN 0-586-03753-5
Tarantula panther 1973 Bob Dylan book
Panther 1973, 124 pages, paperback. ISBN 0-586-03753-5. (This edition has been reprinted with the same cover in 1975 and 1979)
Tarantula panther 1975 Bob Dylan book
Panther 1975, 124 pages, paperback. ISBN 0-586-03753-5


Tarantula penguin 1977 Bob Dylan book
NY, Penguin Books 1977, 137 pages, paperback. ISBN  0-1400-4572-4


Tarantula penguin 1979 Bob Dylan book
Panther 1979, 124 pages. ISBN 0-586-03753-5


Tarantula granada 1982 Bob Dylan book
Granada Publishing 1982, UK, paperback, ISBN 0-586-03753-5

tarantula st martin's press Bob Dylan book
St. Martin's Press USA, 1st printing, January 1994, 137 pages, paperback, ISBN 0-312-10554-1
tarantula st martin's griffin 2nd printing Bob Dylan book
St. Martin's Griffin USA, 2nd printing, 1994, 137 pages, paperback, ISBN 0-312-10554-1
tarantula swedish english 2000 Bob Dylan book
bilingual swedish/english edition, with Klas Burling interview CD, Bakhåll 2000, 192 pages
tarantula Scribner, New York City. 2004.  'Advance Uncorrected Proof Bob Dylan book
Scribner, New York City. 2004. 'Advance Uncorrected Proofs – Not For Sale'

tarantula scribner 2004 Bob Dylan book
Scribner 2004, USA, 137 pages, paperback. ISBN 0-7432-3041-8



tarantula  2005 harper perenial Bob Dylan book
Harper Perennial UK, 2005, 116 pages, paperback, ISBN 0-00-721504-5



tarantula nobel prize winner Bob Dylan book
Harper Perennial 2016, 116 pages, softcover. ISBN: 978-0-00-721504-1. Has "WINNER OF THE NOBEL PRIZE IN LITERATURE 2016" printed on front cover