Bob Dylan apologizes for using autopen to sign $600 copies of his book

Bob Dylan apologizes for using autopen to sign $600 copies of his book

Iconic American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan issued an apology after it was revealed the star used a machine to duplicate his signature on books and artwork for the last few years. 

Dylan said he made an “error in judgment” by approving his works, including the book “The Philosophy of Modern Song,” to be sold as hand-signed copies to fans. 

After developing symptoms of vertigo in 2019, the star claimed he started using an autopen to sign merchandise, books and other artworks. The controversy began when fans on social media began noticing a similar signature on limited-edition signed copies of Dylan’s latest book that cost $600. 

“I’ve been made aware that there’s some controversy about signatures on some of my recent artwork prints and on a limited-edition of Philosophy Of Modern Song. I’ve hand-signed each and every art print over the years, and there’s never been a problem,” Dylan said in a statement. “However, in 2019 I had a bad case of vertigo and it continued into the pandemic years. It takes a crew of five working in close quarters with me to help enable these signing sessions, and we could not find a safe and workable way to complete what I needed to do while the virus was raging.”

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He added, “So, during the pandemic, it was impossible to sign anything and the vertigo didn’t help. With contractual deadlines looming, the idea of using an auto-pen was suggested to me, along with the assurance that this kind of thing is done ‘all the time’ in the art and literary worlds.”

Initially, Dylan’s book publisher, Simon & Schuster, claimed the musician’s signatures were valid with a “letter of authenticity.” However, the company later admitted all 900 copies were penned replicas and offered customers full refunds. 

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“To those who purchased The Philosophy of Modern Song limited edition, we want to apologize,” the publisher said in a statement on social media. “As it turns out, the limited edition books do contain Bob’s original signature, but in a penned replica form.”

“We are addressing this immediately by providing each purchaser with an immediate refund,” Simon & Schuster noted. 

The scandal has raised concerns about how many of Dylan’s other works, which have sold for thousands, have been auto-signed. 

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