Radio 4 to celebrate Bob Dylan’s 80th birthday with series of special programmes

BBC Radio 4 is to mark Bob Dylan’s 80th birthday with a series of special programmes.

The US singer celebrates the landmark birthday on May 24.

On May 17 the radio station will broadcast the first episode of five-part series It Ain’t Me You’re Looking For: Bob Dylan At 80, which will see Professor Sean Latham explore an archive of the musician’s work.

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Then on May 22 Dinner With Dylan will focus on the “passionately dedicated world of Dylan fans, or as they dub themselves ‘Bobcats'”, according to a statement from the BBC.

On the same day Bob Dylan: Verbatim will explore the musician through his own words, featuring his interviews and studio outtakes.

What’s So Great About… Bob Dylan? on BBC Radio 4 Extra will see Sir Lenny Henry question the musician’s greatness on May 24.

British Summer Time festival – London
Bob Dylan (Isabel Infantes/PA)

Mohit Bakaya, controller of BBC Radio 4, said: “Earlier this year we brought listeners some brilliant programming on the life and legacy of David Bowie – an artist close to so many of our audience’s hearts.

“I’m delighted to announce that the station is now looking at another musical genius who has loomed large in our culture for many decades: Bob Dylan.

“The impact and influence of Dylan and his music is unique, and, likewise, we hope to mark the great man’s 80th birthday in a way that only Radio 4 can – through a beguiling mix of drama, close reading essays and music documentaries.”