Category Archives: Bob Dylans’s best songs

Bob Dylan’s best songs – Desolation Row (recorded August 4, 1965)





When you asked how I was doing
Was that some kind of joke?
All these people that you mention
Yes, I know them, they’re quite lame
I had to rearrange their faces
And give them all another name
~Desolation Row

Bob, where is Desolation Row?
Bob Dylan: Where? Oh, that’s someplace in Mexico. It’s across the border. It’s noted for it’s coke factory. Coca-Cola machines are… sells -… sell a lotta Coca-Cola down there.
~San Francisco Press Conference – Dec 3, 1965

Bob Dylan: As I look back on it now, I am surprised that I came up with so many of them. At the time it seemed like a natural thing to do. Now I can look back and see that I must have
written those songs “in the spirit,” you know? Like “Desolation Row” – I was just thinkin’ about that the other night. There’s no logical way that you can arrive at lyrics like that. I don’t know how it was done.
KL: It just came to you?
BD: It just came out through me.
~Bob Dylan – Kurt Loder interview, Oct 1987

Continue reading Bob Dylan’s best songs – Desolation Row (recorded August 4, 1965)

Bob Dylan’s best songs: Abandoned Love




Bob Dylan & Sara Dylan

‘Abandoned Love’ marks the very point at which Dylan decided to (temporarily) abandon love, and particularly forsaken love, as the prime subject-matter for his songs.
~Clinton Heylin (Still On The Road)

A lovely song recorded for (but left out of) Desire in NYC, July 31, 1975. It was later released on Biograph in 1985.

The only live version of the song is even better.

Studio version:

Studio E
Columbia Recording Studios
New York City, New York
31 July 1975
5th Desire session, produced by Don DeVito.

Continue reading Bob Dylan’s best songs: Abandoned Love

Bob Dylan: “When The Night Comes Falling From The Sky”

Bob Dylan Bootleg_series_1-3

Composing it [When The Night Comes Falling From The Sky], yeah. Um… you know, it was bits and pieces of different places that went into writing that. Lines overheard here and there, you know, strung together over a long period of time, resulted in that particular piece.
~Bob Dylan (to Eliot Mintz – March 1991)

…Dylan sings wonderfully. The songs seems capable of kicking itself into even-higher gear, and as the band recognizes it, so does Dylan, who gets audibly more and more excited as the song progresses
~John Bauldie (about the TBS 1-3 version)

@ #113 on my list of Dylan’s 200 best songs.. and this is the “Bootleg Series 1-3” version…. the Empire Burlesque version is nowhere near my top 200…

This version was recorded @

Studio A
The Power Station
New York City, New York
19 February 1985
Empire Burlesque recording session

The band included 2 “E-streeter’s”: Roy Bittan & Little “Stevie” Van Zandt..

  • Bob Dylan (guitar, vocal)
  • Roy Bittan (piano)
  • Robbie Shakespeare (bass)
  • Sly Dunbar (drums)
  • Queen Ester Marrow, Debra Byrd, Carolyn Dennis (backing vocals).
  • Steve van Zandt (guitar)

Spotify:

Continue reading Bob Dylan: “When The Night Comes Falling From The Sky”

June 16: Bob Dylan recorded Like A Rolling Stone in 1965





Bob Dylan - like-a-rolling-stone

….would be Like A Rolling Stone because I wrote that after I’d quit. I’d literally quit singing and playing, and I found myself writing this song, this story, this long piece of vomit about twenty pages long, and out of it I took Like A Rolling Stone and made it as a single. And I’d never written anything like that before and it suddenly came to me that that was what I should do, you know. I mean, nobody had ever done that before.
~Bob Dylan (to Martin Bronstein – Feb 1966)

.. The sound is so rich the song never plays the same way twice
~Greil Marcus

The first time I heard Bob Dylan, I was in the car with my mother listening to WMCA, and on came that snare shot that sounded like somebody had kicked open the door to your mind
~Bruce Springsteen (Jan 1988)

bob-dylan-1965-bass

Continue reading June 16: Bob Dylan recorded Like A Rolling Stone in 1965

May 11: Bob Dylan recorded “Lonesome Day Blues” in 2001





bob dylan love & theft

May 11: Bob Dylan’s best songs: “Lonesome Day Blues” recorded in 2001

I overwrite. If I know I am going in to record a song, I write more than I need. In the past that’s been a problem because I failed to use discretion at times. I have to guard against that. On this album, “Lonesome Day Blues” was twice as long at one point.
~Bob Dylan (Robert Hilburn – Sept 2001)

bob dylan 2001

@ #152 on my list of Dylan’s 200 best songs.. comes this hard, tough & tight electric blues.

The master version (Love and Theft version) was recorded @ Sony Music Studios – New York City – May 11, 2001 (according to Clinton Heylin –  Still on the Road: The Songs of Bob Dylan, 1974-2006).
Few session details are available.

 …Dylan growls like a bear cat that hasn’t eaten since the Eighties
~Rob Sheffield (Rollingstone.com)

Continue reading May 11: Bob Dylan recorded “Lonesome Day Blues” in 2001