Jac Holzman had been in California hoping to establish a presence for Elektra when Bob Dylan was setting Greenwich Village on its head. He had missed out on signing Dylan, who, with the Beatles, was soon to become one of the two driving forces in music during the 60s. Having witnessed Dylan’s electric performance at Newport in 1965, Holzman knew that folk music would never be the same again. It led to seek something new and back to California, where he discovered Love and The Doors.
Yet it was Holzman’s successor, David Geffen, brought in to head up a combined Elektra/ Asylum label in 1973, who lured Bob Dylan from Columbia to record Planet Waves, with The Band, highly regarded in their own right. Though Dylan and the Band had played together for almost ten years before recording this album (notably, The Basement Tapes and the controversial 1966 World tour), this was their first official pairing featuring some terrific songs including – “Forever Young,” “Wedding Song,” and “Dirge.”
Planet Waves, surprisingly, was Dylan’s first #1 album, something he had never achieved in a dozen years at Columbia. A U.S. tour with The Band followed, attracting six million, postal only ticket applications. The resultant live recording, Before The Flood proved to be Dylan’s final Elektra/Asylum album. He returned to Columbia to record one of his greatest albums, Blood On The Tracks.