Magnanimous Japanese author forgives Bob Dylan for apparently incorporating some of his text into lyrics:
- A Japanese writer said Tuesday he was flattered to learn that passages from one of his books apparently found their way into Bob Dylan’s lyrics.
In the song “Floater” from his 2001 album, “Love and Theft,” Dylan croons: “My old man, he’s like some feudal lord, got more lives than a cat.” He also sings, “I’m not quite as cool or forgiving as I sound” and then, “Sometimes somebody wants you to give something up, And tears or not, it’s too much to ask.”
On page 6 of Junichi Saga’s book “Confessions of a Yakuza,” the protagonist recalls: “My old man would sit there like a feudal lord.” Later, he says: “I’m not as cool or forgiving as I might have sounded.” On page 182, he says: “Tears or not, though, that was too much to ask.”
It was unclear if Dylan intentionally lifted any material.
….Saga said he harbors no ill feelings toward Dylan.
He has told his publisher, Tokyo-based Kodansha International, that while he would prefer to be credited as a source for Dylan’s songs, he has “absolutely no plans to sue.” There are no plans for a reprinted edition, either.
“Why would I sue? To take something that made people around the world happy and try to exploit it for money — that’s poverty,” Saga said. [AP]
News travels fast: though long out of print, the book is currently #61 on Amazon. Interesting title on the Dylan album.