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75 Bob Dylan cover songs in new collection for Amnesty

A new 75-strong set of Bob Dylan cover songs is being released in support of Amnesty International’s human rights work.

Buy Chimes to Freedom from the Amnesty Shop

The collection, Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International, features Dylan covers from Adele, My Chemical Romance, Michael Franti, Elvis Costello, Sinéad O'Connor, Queens Of The Stone Age, Bad Religion, Patti Smith, Billy Bragg, My Morning Jacket and Ke$ha, amongst others.

In total 80 musicians have contributed new or previously unreleased recordings to the collection, which is scheduled for physical (four discs) and digital release in North America on 24 January 2012 through Fontana Distribution. It will be distributed internationally through Fontana International on 30 January.

Chimes of Freedom features many of Amnesty’s long-time supporters and a huge range of ages, from teenage pop star Miley Cyrus, 19, to 92-year-old folk music legend Pete Seeger. Seeger has recorded Dylan’s poignant “Forever young” with a Children's rights’s chorus. Almost every track on the album is being released for the first time, with 70 songs recorded especially for Chimes of Freedom

All of the artists, session musicians, arrangers, engineers, producers and recording studios worked pro bono on the project.

Chimes of Freedom aims to raise support for Amnesty’s fight against censorship and attacks on free speech, whether involving artists, writers, musicians, political activists or bloggers. One individual featured in the campaign is the imprisoned Nobel Prize winner Liu Xiaobo in China, a scholar and human rights defender jailed in 2009 for writing about corruption and criticising China’s political system. 

Chimes of Freedom was executive produced by Jeff Ayeroff and Julie Yannatta, who also worked on Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur - a 2007 collection of John Lennon solo compositions performed by artists including U2, Green Day and R.E.M.  Ayeroff and Yannatta said:

“This album is a powerful fusion of the music community’s respect for Amnesty’s life-affirming work and for Bob Dylan’s enduring brilliance. We are proud to have worked with Amnesty to produce this remarkable project.”

In 1962, Amnesty International evolved from a one-year campaign to free political prisoners into a worldwide movement fighting for justice, freedom and human dignity; today the organisation has more than three million supporters in 150 countries.  In March of the same year, Bob Dylan’s debut album was released, launching an unparalleled recording career.

In the liner notes to the album, the historian Sean Wilentz says:

“Over the half century, Dylan’s art has explored and expressed the anguish and hope of the modern human condition.”

Amnesty International USA’s Manager of Music Relations Karen Scott said:

“Bob Dylan’s music endures because he so brilliantly captures our heartbreak, our joy, our frailty, our confusion, our courage and our struggles. His words convey a depth of meaning that few artists can equal, inspiring us and always moving ahead of our expectations.  We at Amnesty International are deeply grateful to this legendary musician and to all of the artists who have contributed to this project.”

Almost 30 tracks on the album were mixed by famed engineer Bob Clearmountain. Bob Ludwig and Adam Ayan of Gateway Mastering donated their mastering services. The album cover illustration is by Grammy Award winning artist Mick Haggerty.

The tracklisting for Chimes of Freedom is as follows:

Raphael Saadiq: Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat
Patti Smith: Drifter's Escape
Rise Against: Ballad of Hollis Brown
Tom Morello The Nightwatchman: Blind Willie McTell
Pete Townshend: Corrina, Corrina
Bettye LaVette: Most of the Time
Charlie Winston: This Wheel's On Fire
Diana Krall: Simple Twist of Fate
Brett Dennen: You Ain't Goin' Nowhere
Mariachi El Bronx: Love Sick
Ziggy Marley: Blowin' in the Wind
The Gaslight Anthem: Changing of the Guards
Silversun Pickups: Not Dark Yet
My Morning Jacket: You're A Big Girl Now
The Airborne Toxic Event: Boots of Spanish Leather
Sting: Girl from the North Country
Mark Knopfler: Restless Farewell
Queens Of The Stone Age: Outlaw Blues
Lenny Kravitz: Rainy Day Woman # 12 & 35
Steve Earle & Lucia Micarelli: One More Cup of Coffee (Valley Below)
Blake Mills: Heart Of Mine
Miley Cyrus: You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go
Billy Bragg: Lay Down Your Weary Tune
Elvis Costello: License to Kill
Angelique Kidjo: Lay, Lady, Lay
Natasha Bedingfield: Ring Them Bells
Jackson Browne: Love Minus Zero/No Limit
Joan Baez: Seven Curses (Live)
The Belle Brigade: No Time To Think
Sugarland: Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You (Live)
Jack's Mannequin: Mr Tambourine Man
Oren Lavie: 4th Time Around
Sussan Deyhim: All I Really Want To Do
Adele: Make You Feel My Love (Recorded Live at WXPN)
K'NAAN: With God On Our Side
Ximena Sariñana: I Want You
Neil Finn with Pajama Club: She Belongs to Me
Bryan Ferry: Bob Dylan's Dream
Zee Avi: Tomorrow Is A Long Time
Carly Simon: Just Like a Woman
Flogging Molly: The Times They Are A-Changin'
Fistful Of Mercy: Buckets Of Rain
Joe Perry: Man Of Peace
Bad Religion: It's All Over Now, Baby Blue
My Chemical Romance: Desolation Row (Live)
RedOne featuring Nabil Khayat: Knockin' on Heaven's Door
Paul Rodgers & Nils Lofgren: Abandoned Love
Darren Criss featuring Chuck Criss and Freelance Whales: New Morning
Cage the Elephant: The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll
Band of Skulls :It Ain't Me, Babe
Sinéad O'Connor: Property of Jesus
Ed Roland and The Sweet Tea Project: Shelter From The Storm
Ke$ha: Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Kronos Quartet: Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Maroon 5: I Shall Be Released
Carolina Chocolate Drops: Political World
Seal & Jeff Beck: Like A Rolling Stone
Taj Mahal: Bob Dylan's 115th Dream
Dierks Bentley: Senor (Tales of Yankee Power) (Live)
Mick Hucknall: One Of Us Must Know (Sooner Or Later)
Thea Gilmore: I'll Remember You
State Radio: John Brown
Dave Matthews Band: All Along the Watchtower (Live)
Michael Franti: Subterranean Homesick Blues
We Are Augustines: Mama, You Been On My Mind
Lucinda Williams: Tryin' To Get To Heaven
Kris Kristofferson: Quinn The Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn)
Eric Burdon: Gotta Serve Somebody
Evan Rachel Wood: I'd Have You Anytime
Marianne Faithfull: Baby Let Me Follow You Down (Live)
Pete Seeger: Forever Young
Bob Dylan: Chimes Of Freedom

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