ENTERTAINMENT

Daniel Botkin’s Riddles for Fans of Bob Dylan: A Brief Introduction

“The sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken.” — Bob Dylan

Ed Newman
4 min readJun 16, 2020

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Photo by Ed Newman.

Anyone who has followed Bob Dylan’s career over the course of a lifetime will agree that Bob Dylan is one of a kind. I think the same can be said for Daniel Botkin, a lifelong Dylan fan, artist and singer/songwriter in addition to being a Bible teacher and conference speaker.

I first met Mr. Botkin at the 2016 Duluth Dylan Fest and helped orchestrate his one man art show at The Red Mug that year, which also included an artist talk that garnered a good crowd and TV coverage. His creativity extends to performing as well, and he’s continued to participate annually in the singer/songwriter contests that have continued in Duluth.

Self-Portrait with Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat. Photo by Ed Newman.

Botkin, who hails from Peoria, Illinois, also has a sense of humor that reveals itself in both his art and his songwriting. On one occasion he was in his house singing “The Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest” and his wife told him to sing something his twin daughters would enjoy. He reinvented the song as “The Ballad of Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Priest,” which he later performed here in Duluth.

This spring he assembled a collection of riddles for Dylan fans which he may have intended for distribution at our 2020 Dylan Fest which had unfortunately been cancelled due to the pandemic. I obtained a copy a couple weeks back and found it quite entertaining. There’s a sense in which it’s not only a book of riddles but also a trivia contest. A few of the answers will be obvious, but many will challenge even the most dedicated fan.

Here are a handful of riddles so you can catch the spirit of this book. The 57 page volume includes a chapter on where the idea for this book came from, a brief history of Botkin’s relationship to the music of Bob Dylan and some other bonus material. For $7.99 I think it’s a pretty good value and might make a good gift for the Dylan fan who already has everything else.

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Ed Newman

An avid reader who writes about arts, culture, literature & other life obsessions. @ennyman3 Look for my books on Amazon https://tinyurl.com/y3l9sfpj