Rockin' in the U.S.S.R.: Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell and Neil Young?!
OK, file this under the heading of diplomatic nirvana.
Apparently, back in the 1970's, someone thought it would be a good idea to have Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell and Neil Young fight communism. Per recent Wikileaks disclosures of diplomatic cables, the US embassy in Moscow thought the singer-songwriters might connect with Russian youth.
US ambassador Walter Stoessel Junior wrote:
“Soul genre not of top interest here, and suggest priority consideration be given to soft rock, blues/rock or country rock. Previous country music efforts have succeeded in establishing acceptability of this genre and we believe time is right to expand musical horizons.No indication of whether the US embassy in Moscow was aware that Neil & Joni are Canadian.
Top performers who are both eminent in the field and genuinely creative artists should be approached first before considering ones of lesser stature and perhaps less creative talent."
Needless to say , these concerts never happened and there's no indication the artists were ever even aware of the possibility. It is highly doubtful any of the artists suggested would have ever accepted such an arrangement.
Now would that have been rockin' in the free world or what?