Tread in the New York footsteps of Dylan Thomas at a live music and spoken word show.

Richard Burton blocks thin

Dylan Live - Daniel WilliamsDylan Live is a 60 minute bilingual performance which traces the origin of hip hop back to a young Welshman’s visit to New York in 1952 through a fusion of jazz, beat poetry, hip hop and spoken word. 

Dylan visited and stayed in New York City on four occasions between 1950 and 1953, a time when New York was witnessing a revolution in music with musicians such as Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Tad Dameron and others forging the style known as Be-Bop. This was the music that inspired New York’s hip hop movement, but if the music came from Be-Bop where did the words come from?

In 1952 Dylan Thomas recorded his poetry for the first time onto vinyl, which was released in America by Caedmon Records. No one was recording poetry before Dylan – did rap start with Dylan Thomas in America?

Professor and jazz musician, Daniel Williams will guide us through this captivating discussion, offering his academic interpretation on Dylan’s significant influence on American culture. The thought-provoking lecture will be interrupted by contemporary rap, spoken word and jazz performances by some of Wales’ leading musicians and poets, including poets, Martin Daws, Aneirin Karadog and Zaru Jonson, jazz musician Huw V Williams and hip hop artist Ed Holden, all of whom have been influenced by Dylan in some way or another. An exclusive film by Ewan Morris Jones will also provide a breath-taking visual backdrop to the show.

Join us for a fusion of vinyl, jazz, beat poetry, hip hop and spoken word at a university near you and relive this golden era.  The performance will be held at 1.30 pm, 28 February 2014 at the Taliesin Arts Centre, Swansea.

Tickets are are free for students and £5 for non-students. Book your ticket today by contacting Literature Wales on 029 2047 2266 /  For further information, and including additional venues see:

Dylan Live is in partnership with CREW at Swansea University. 

Daniel G. Williams is Professor of English Literature and Director of the Richard Burton Centre for the Study of Wales at Swansea University.