The "Vilswanderer" is a singer and songwriter from the Upper Palatinate (German word: Oberpfalz), a region in Bavaria in Southern Germany. The "Vils" is a river stretching about 87 km through the Upper Palatinate. "Wanderer" means, as the word says: walking, roaming or rambling.
The artist Vilswanderer has been playing the acoustic guitar since the age of ten. He started with classical guitar at the age of fifteen. A break with his teacher for the classical guitar happened in 1980, when he started to play electrical guitar and organized his first Rock´n Roll Band in the small village of Kümmersbruck, close to the town of Amberg in the Middle of the Upper Palatinate. Maybe this is similar to Bob Dylan, who broke with the acoustic guitar the first time at the Newport Folk Fetival in 1965. This is also the year of birth of the Vilswanderer.
Since the early eighties he has been actively involved with many bands in the area as a guitar player or as a singer. He has played Rock´n Roll, Jazz, Pop and Dance music with the same intensity as he has done with the classical guitar, the blues guitar or the finger-picking guitar. The name Vilswanderer was created in 2008, when he started to write his own songs in the Upper Palatinate/Bavarian dialect. He also started to play bluesharp.
How did the Vilswanderer get into the Bob Dylan thing?
"Bob Dylan, he was always there. But for a long time I never got deeper into his music and words. I played some of his songs in different programs of bands or as a solo player and singer. Inspirations of a friend and the Wanderlust brought me into discussions about the music of today and the good old songs".
This friend knew a man, who was really deep into the world of Bob Dylan. He introduced me to Felix Muth, an English teacher in Amberg, and we organized the first public Bob Dylan evening in June 2016. Felix presented the evening of Bob Dylans Songs and commented on their meanings and the lines between.
Me, the Vilswanderer translated Bob Dylan's lyrics in the Bavarian or Upper Palatinate dialect. The translations are as accurate as possible with regard to the meaning of Dylan's lyrics. The dialect offers a wider spectrum of words, vocals and rhymes. It also creates its own slang. The Upper Palatinate is an almost hidden region in the South-East of Germany. Maybe a forgotten place with its own spirit of small paths, valleys and creeks. The language there is special. Songs sung in this dialect can only be understood by people familiar with it.
"In all this work, by translating, singing and performing, I felt how awesome Bob Dylan's songwriting is".