Highway 61 Renavigated
Dylan to voice GPS? Please say yes!
By percy thrillington Aug 26, 2009 1:31PM
"If you're going to the North Country Fair, turn left in 300 meters..."
I know the internet is a hotbed of half-, quarter-, and just plain un-truths, but PLEASE OH PLEASE, whoever is in charge of truth, let this London Daily Telegraph story about Bob Dylan considering becoming the voice of a satellite navigation system be true? Consider the possibilities: "Highway 61," "Positively 4th Street," "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again," "Nashville Skyline Rag," "Mixed Up Confusion"—they are, if not endless, then certainly major.
The music star claimed that he has been approached by more than one manufacturer keen to harness his unmistakeable, rasping tones - a voice which one critic memorably likened to sandpaper. He shared the news with listeners to his late-night radio show, Theme Time Radio Hour, which is broadcast on BBC Six Music.
“You know I don’t usually like to tell people what I’m doing, but I’m talking to a couple of car companies about the possibility of being the voice of their GPS system,” he disclosed.
Motorists who follow Dylan’s directions, however, may take some time to reach their destination. “I think it would be good if you are looking for directions and you heard my voice saying something like, ‘Left at the next street.... No, right... You know what? Just go straight." He added: "I probably shouldn’t do it because whichever way I go, I always end up at one place - Lonely Avenue.”
Dylan, 66, would not be the first celebrity to lend his voice to a GPS system. TomTom, the sat-nav manufacturer, currently offers the voices of Homer Simpson and John Cleese, while Kim Cattrall, the Sex and the City actress, and The A Team actor Mr T are also popular among British motorists.
Several websites offer impersonations of celebrity voices for download, with Sean Connery, Ozzy Osbourne and David Hasselhoff among the favourites for drivers who consider the computerised sat-nav tones to be on the boring side.
Eddie Izzard, the comedian, offers his own set of directions, which include phrases such as: “For God’s sake, turn left!” and “Bear left, monkey right.”
This would not be Dylan’s first foray into the commercial world. Earlier this year, he surprised many of his fans by allowing his music to be used in a television advert. Blowin’ In The Wind, his 1963 anthem, was featured in a commercial for the Co-operative Group.
I think you know where this blog stands on the issue.
live local music on
Enter your ZIP code to see concerts happening in your area.
Data provided by Zvents