Oliver Ralfe will be known to most of our readers for the wondrous Ralfe Band, appearances on the Mighty Boosh and as the director of Boosh documentary Journey of the Childmen. What you may not know is that Oly also produced a documentary about an obsessive Bob Dylan fan, AJ Weberman. And what’s more, it’s going to be on TV next week!
The Ballad of AJ Weberman was winner of the Raindance Award at the British Independent Film Awards 2006. On the film’s website it’s described as: “an irreverent and witty exploration into one man’s obsessions, his life lived on the New York fringes and a uniquely twisted take on the American dream.”
Weberman does not see himself as a stalker and insists that Dylan should be grateful that he is around: ‘How was I to know I would have been to Dylan what Verlaine was to Rimbaud’. It’s hard to see this as a tale of poet and critic, but rather a look at the bizarre relationship between the obsessed and the object of his obsession and how it can take over a man’s life.
The documentary airs at the following times on BBC4: Friday 20th May at 22:55, and Sunday 22nd May at 23:05. You’ll also be able to catch it on iPlayer for 1 week after those transmission dates.