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How the Beatles built on Bob Dylan’s genius

<span>Photograph: Jeff Robbins/AP</span>
Photograph: Jeff Robbins/AP

David Cantwell’s observation, in Annie Zaleski’s feature, that classic Bob Dylan is “layered irony and hurtling verses” while his later mid-tempo ballads “align more closely to the Great American Songbook’s musical and emotional values” is spot-on (‘It speaks straight from the heart’: Bryan Ferry, Adele and Engelbert Humperdinck on Bob Dylan’s Make You Feel My Love, 31 February). But I hope the Guardian will mark, as generously as Ms Zaleski’s fitting tribute to Dylan, that extraordinary day, 60 years ago, on which the Beatles invaded that musical territory with Please Please Me, a landmark debut LP made in 24 hours. They never yielded that heartland while progressively adding to it all the original lyrical (and in their case musical) subtleties of His Bobness.
Gareth Calway
Sedgeford, Norfolk

• Annie Zaleski’s instructive piece about Bob Dylan’s plaintive Make You Feel My Love revealed that Dylan changes a couple of self-referential, boastful lines when he performs the song live. I was thus inspired to dig out my T-shirt that is emblazoned with “Yes, I am old but I saw Bob Dylan on stage”.
Mike Pender
Cardiff