Category Archives: The Best Songs

The Best Songs by Bob Dylan: Stuck Inside of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again

bobdylan-blondeonblonde-cover

“Now!… Well for one thing, the music, the rhyming and rhythm, what I call the mathematics of a song, are more second-nature to me. I used to have to go after a song, seek it out. But now, instead of going to it I stay where I am and let everything disappear and the song rushes to me. Not just the music, the words, too.
~Bob Dylan (to Margaret Steen, Nov 1965)

[SIoMWTMBA].. goes beyond being an exciting rock-music performance. It shares with those slower Blonde on Blonde songs ‘Visions of Johanna’ and ‘Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands’ a greater-than-average duration and a general high seriousness of intention.
~Michael Gray (BD Encyclopedia)

bob dylan stuck inside of mobile

@ #5 on my list of Dylan’s 200 best songs.. the second best song on Blonde On Blonde.

The master version (Blonde On Blonde version) was recorded @ Columbia Music Row Studios – Nashville, Tennessee –17 February 1966 (47 years ago).

This was the the 8th Blonde On Blonde session, produced by Bob Johnston.. and after 20 attempts Dylan was satisfied … with take 20. No other songs were tried @ this session.

….and those lovely drums….

…I know it sounds silly, but I love that song and how it pulls me in, but once I’m in there I always focus on the drummer. It’s a song with so much soul, but the more I listen, I always go back to those killer drums.
~Frank Black (Pixies, etc) (to MOJO’s “Dylan 100 best songs edition” )

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Master version (Blonde On Blonde):

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August 27: Bob Dylan – Old Five And Dimers (Like Me) (Billy Joe Shaver)





«..I’ve lost part of three fingers, broke my back, suffered a heart attack and a quadruple bypass, had a steel plate put in my neck and 136 stiches in my head, fought drugs and booze, spent the money I had, and burried my wife, son & mother in the span of one year…. I’m not proud of my misfortune – I’m proud of my survival»
~Billy Joe Shaver

“I’ve always been real blunt. Most people from Texas are that way. And it seems like all the great writers, they’re not afraid to say anything. I’ve always been pretty blunt, and sometimes it seems, brutally honest, but it’s real close to the bone.”
~Billy Joe Shaver

Bob Dylan has never played this song in concert, or released it. All we got are the 3 takes from the circulating “Hearts of Fire outtakes”. The solo version is absolutely incredible.

Townhouse Studio
London, England
27 & 28 August 1986
Hearts Of Fire recording session, produced by Beau Hill

Continue reading August 27: Bob Dylan – Old Five And Dimers (Like Me) (Billy Joe Shaver)

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)

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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)

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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