You’ll hear a new song, my blue-eyed son; you’ll hear a new song, my darling young one, for Dylan’s old classic he’ll record anew—to promote clean water for me and for you.

Okay, the rhyme was cheesy, but this is actually pretty cool: according to, Bob Dylan has recorded a new version of his 1963 classic “A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall” exclusively for the water-themed Expo Zaragoza 2008 world fair, which is to be held in the northern Spanish city of Zaragoza from June 14 to Sept. 14, 2008.

Dylan has chosen multi-platinum EMI-signed band Amaral, from Zaragoza, to record a version of the song in Spanish. The two versions of the tune will form part of a promo campaign for Expo Zaragoza 2008, which includes a TV spot that will begin airing December 17. More than 100 countries have confirmed their attendance at the Expo, which organizers expect will gather some 5 million visitors over three months. Whether either Dylan or Amaral will perform in Zaragoza during the world fair is uncertain.

Expo Zaragoza president Roque was “delighted” that Dylan has offered his voice and face as the sound and image of the world fair, whose theme is “Water and Sustainable Development.” He says Dylan's contribution, which includes the singer’s spoken comments in English on the importance of clean water across the world, as “a gift of one of the songs that best reflects [Dylan’s] vindicative spirit.”

Johnna Jackson, a representative for Dylan, was at the Madrid presentation with Gistau and Amaral representative Manuel Notario, who said Amaral was already working on the recording. Amaral performed as the support band on a Dylan tour of Spain a few years ago. “Bob Dylan chose the song personally and did a unique and original version for this project,” said Jackson. “He feels very proud to be able to take part.”

And he should be. Maybe the rest of us will eventually follow, quit staring at our computer screens and take action about something. Hats off to those of you who already are.

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