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Q: serve somebody ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: serve somebody
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Music
Asked by: badabing-ga
List Price: $3.16
Posted: 17 Oct 2003 15:21 PDT
Expires: 16 Nov 2003 14:21 PST
Question ID: 267327
who's the strong female voice on Dylan's "You Gotta Serve Somebody"? 
liner notes list three women as his backup singers but there's a
single stand-out vocalist on this track.  who is it?

Carolyn Dennis, Helena Springs, Regina Havis (aka Regina Brown, Regina
McCrary??).  also could it be Clydie King (uncredited)?

could you find me something close to an authoritative source?

Subject: Re: serve somebody
Answered By: bobby_d-ga on 17 Oct 2003 20:19 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Thank you very much for the question, and the opportunity to answer it

I'm sorry I couldn't come up with anything final for you.

I've done some more research since you made that comment.  I thought
this link looked promising, but alas, not so:

So, they met in 1979.  They obvious had a very strong relationship -
"Regina Havis opened the majority of Dylan’s gospel shows
single-handedly; toured with Dylan for four years; co-songwriter with

But it is unusual that she is listed _last_ in the liner notes, don't
you think?

Anyway, I decided to start a thread at the Bob Dylan discussion forum
- there are fanatics there who might know the answer.  I'll keep an
eye on it and clarify my answer if any news comes!

Sorry I couldn't find the answer you wanted!!  I hope it comes!!

Warm regards,

badabing-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $5.00
thanks a million!  yeah, it did seem _odd_ but maybe Regina didn't
sing on every track??  or it was a seniority thing??  or the fact that
he was married?? to Carolyn Dennis.  appreciate your watch on that
thread and starting it in the first place.  several renditions of this
song, too -- one with Jerry Garcia as backup.  it would be pretty
funny if it _were_ Katey Sagal.  appreciate all your hard work,
bobby_d.  I'll certainly ring you up again.

Subject: Re: serve somebody
From: bobby_d-ga on 17 Oct 2003 16:59 PDT
I did a fair bit of research on this for you, but couldn't find
anything conclusive.  I actually listened to the track eventually, and
didn't notice that any of the background vocals stood out?

I would take a punt with Regina McCrary though! - "Chicago Mass Choir
fronted by Regina McCrary (who sang backup for Dylan on the 1978 and
1979 tours when these recordings were originally done)",,2533182,00.html

Just because it sounds almost choir-esque, and she would be 'front'ing

Subject: Re: serve somebody
From: badabing-ga on 17 Oct 2003 17:28 PDT
'zactly the way I was leaning, bobby_d -- so much so I investigated
her other names for additional search avenues to no avail.  gran
pretty much searched her brains out on this one herself, but I wanted
a confirmation if possible.

her voice is most noticeable at the very end of the song.  I *do*
agree she's probably frontwoman for the choir.  we must've run onto
the same information.

go ahead and post as an answer.  if you or someone else finds
something solid, post a comment and I'll post a new question for

thanks for your time!

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