“He’s very good at making sure you don’t know him.”
- Jack White(laughing) on his friendship with Bob Dylan (To Rolling Stone Magazine)
The real connection between these to artists is of course their love of music, the love of blues and country music. Are there other similarities? The pencil-thin mustache, Jack White versus Jack Frost and the cool hats and canes.
I read somewhere that Jack White once said he has three dads: his biological father, God and Bob Dylan. Dylan was the first concert he ever saw — he says he had seat No. 666 — and he shares with his hero a love for manipulating and obscuring his own persona.
I know that the first concert I went to when I was ten years old was Bob Dylan, and I really wanted him to play ‘Blowin’ In The Wind’ – but he didn’t play it. I wasn’t upset. I kind of thought it was cool he didn’t when I was ten years old.
- Jack White (to The Observer)
White has done many Bob Dylan songs , especially with White Stripes , I will put those I can find into this post.
Let’s start with a fantastic version of Love Sick done by The White Stripes:
How did you first strike up a friendship with Bob Dylan?
That was just by accident. I went and saw him play in Detroit and he said to me, “We’ve been playing one of your songs lately at sound checks.” I thought, Wow. I was afraid to ask which one. I didn’t even ask. It was just such an honor to hear that. Later on, I remember I went home and I called back. I said, “Can I talk to the bass player?” I called the theater. I was like, “Did Bob mean that he wanted me to play tonight? ‘Cause he said some things that I thought maybe – maybe I misconstrued. Was he meaning that he wanted me to play with him tonight? I don’t want to be rude and pretend that I didn’t hear or something like that.” So turned out yeah, we played together that night. He said yeah, come on, let’s play something, and we played “Ball and Biscuit,” one of my songs. It’s not lost on me that he played one of my songs, not the other way around. - Jack White to the Speakeasy (WSJ)
Jack White have played with Dylan since on at least three of Bob Dylan’s tunes, for two nights in a row, Jack came on stage to do some very special songs. Meet me in the morning, One more cup of coffee and Outlaw blues
They’re selling postcards of the hanging
They’re painting the passports brown
The beauty parlor is filled with sailors
The circus is in town
Here comes the blind commissioner
They’ve got him in a trance
One hand is tied to the tight-rope walker
The other is in his pants
And the riot squad they’re restless
They need somewhere to go
As Lady and I look out tonight
From Desolation Row
Another great version of “Desoaltion Row”.
NEC Arena National Exhibition Center Birmingham, England 24 June 1998
Bob Dylan (vocal & guitar)
Bucky Baxter (pedal steel guitar & electric slide guitar)
Larry Campbell (guitar)
Tony Garnier (bass)
David Kemper (drums & percussion)
Cinderella, she seems so easy
“It takes one to know one,” she smiles
And puts her hands in her back pockets
Bette Davis style
And in comes Romeo, he’s moaning
“You Belong to Me I Believe”
And someone says, “You’re in the wrong place my friend
You better leave”
And the only sound that’s left
After the ambulances go
Is Cinderella sweeping up
On Desolation Row
Yes, I received your letter yesterday
(About the time the doorknob broke)
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
Right now I can’t read too good
Don’t send me no more letters, no
Not unless you mail them
From Desolation Row
Getting To dylan, the essential filmed portrait of the post-conversion Dylan, remains an important adjunct to “Don’t Look Back”, “Eat The Document”, and “Renaldo and Clara”, the three other films to confront the myth as it surrounds and, in “Getting To dylan”, envelops the man.
~Clinton Heylin (Behind The shades)
I tend to agree with Clinton Heylin’s assessment [about "Getting To Dylan"]
~Paul Williams (BD Performing Artist 1986-1990 & beyond)
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We give credit to artists when we can find the source.
1. Visions Of Johanna
2. Like A Rolling Stone
3. Tangled Up in Blue
4. Ballad Of A Thin Man
5. Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again
6. Blind Willie McTell (electric version)
7. It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)
8. It's All Over Now, Baby Blue
9. Desolation Row
10. Idiot Wind (New York version)