Bob Dylan wins Nobel Prize in literature

Bob Dylan has been named as the winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize for literature.

He was awarded the prize, "for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition".

He's the first American to win since Toni Morrison in 1993 and the first musician to win the award.

The award to Dylan came as a surprise to many, who consider the artist a musician more than a literary writer.

New Zealand music reviewer Graham Reid believes Dylan deserves it.

"He reconfigured the sight-lines of popular music, a couple of times," he told RadioLive.

"What they've said is the man is a poet, and he just set his poetry to music as have many poets.

"It's for a lifetime of work, and any musician would be happy to have the first three Bob Dylan albums under their belt as their own.

The 75-year-old, who still tours regularly, was one of the most influential songwriters of the 20th century.