Bob Dylan Centre, Tulsa opens: Museum is home to 100,000 items

The US is awash with destinations for musical worship: New Jersey for Springsteen, Memphis for Elvis, Seattle for Nirvana, San Francisco for Green Day, LA for just about everyone.

Now an unlikely US city has joined the pantheon of musical pilgrimage places, with Tulsa staking its claim to being a mecca for fans of Bob Dylan.

Dylan has no blood ties to the second largest city in the southern central state of Oklahoma, mostly known for its oil – and a shameful racial history.

Dylan, the Nobel Prize-winning voice of the mid-20th century and beyond, though born in Minnesota in the upper mid-west of the US, is usually associated with New York City, where he cut his poetic teeth in the folk scene of the 1960s. But a series of purchases has led to the establishment of the new Bob Dylan Centre inhabiting an old paper warehouse in Tulsa's developing Arts District.

While not officially "endorsed" by Dylan – no one knows if the enigmatic 80-year-old has even visited yet – according to The Los Angeles Times, Dylan likes the idea of Tulsa as the location for the museum, being "heartland" US and having a Native American presence.

The Bob Dylan Centre is, however, built around Dylan's own extensive archive, bought by billionaire Tulsa oilman George Kaiser in 2016, to whom Dylan offered it after Kaiser had purchased the archives of Dylan's hero, Oklahoma-born folk singer Woody Guthrie in 2011 and created a centre dedicated to him, also in Tulsa.

The Dylan museum is home to 100,000 items sure to get Dylanologists driving Route 66 to Tulsa to pay their respects (there are also three-hour direct flights from LA).

It features notebooks, handwritten and typed lyrics, letters, leather jackets, guitars and other musical instruments (including a drum that inspired "Mr Tambourine Man"), interactive displays and plenty of music to listen to, including a Dylan-loaded jukebox curated by Elvis Costello.

Its focus, though, is on the peerless songwriter's creativity – sections follow the evolution of some of his most famous songs – and in that, the museum is set to be a place of broad inspiration as much as singularly-focused worship.

See bobdylancenter.com and travelok.com