“Isn’t that something…?”
Two weeks after being named the 2016 recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Bob Dylan finally spoke publicly about the honor in an interview with the U.K.’s The Telegraph newspaper.
Previously, the only public reference to the win was a fleeting mention on Dylan’s website, but it was deleted within 24 hours. He had also reportedly been dodging calls from the Nobel committee since the announcement.
So when The Telegraph sat down with the 75-year-old musician, the first question on everyone’s mind was, obviously, if the iconic musician will be attending the Nobel ceremony on Dec. 10.
“Absolutely,” he answered. “If it’s at all possible.”
The “Blowin’ in the Wind” singer previously appeared to be cavalier about becoming a Nobel laureate, but in the interview, he seemed pleased with the honor.
“It’s hard to believe. Amazing, incredible,” he mused. “Whoever dreams about something like that?”
Though the Nobel committee has been at their wit’s end these past couple weeks trying to get ahold of the singer, going so far as to label him “impolite and arrogant,” Dylan seemed pretty amused by the entire situation when asked about the dodged calls.
“Well, I’m right here,” he joked.
As ET reported on the day of the accouncement, the Swedish Academy cited Dylan for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.” He is the first singer-songwriter to win the award.
Sara Danius, the permanent secretary for the Swedish Academy, has compared Dylan’s work with the likeness of the ancient Greeks. Dylan, never one to toot his own horn, accepted this comparison with hesitation.
“I suppose so, in some way. Some [of my own] songs – “Blind Willie,” “The Ballad of Hollis Brown,” “Joey,” “A Hard Rain,” “Hurricane,” and some others – definitely are Homeric in value.”
Dylan has never been one to explain his lyrics, though, preferring to let people interpret them in their own way. “I’ll let other people decide what they are,” he told The Telegraph. “The academics, they ought to know. I’m not really qualified. I don’t have any opinion.”
The Nobel Laureate ceremony will take place on Dec. 10 in Stockholm.