Rolling Stone and the Groom: covering the cover versions

By Aaron Galbraith and Tony Attwood

Way way back, before the dawn the time, far beyond the outer limits of civilisation, while human beings were just a twinkle in the eye of the almighty (or 2018 as it is more often known) we ran a series about Dylan cover versions, with many readers of this site kindly contributing their own favourites.

Looking back at the list I (Tony) see that I didn’t get round to adding all the links for the last few recordings nominated, but I will do that soon.  However the full list of nominated wonder covers is on the site in the index.

Now this little venture came to mind as the two of us started debating from our respective sides of the Atlantic this take of The Groom’s Still Waiting At The Altar, and we (Aaron) found Bob Dylan re-working his own song, but with Michael Bloomfield, so it is like a semi-cover, or maybe a coverette (we do like inventing new words!)

This was included on a Michael Bloomfield Box Set called From His Head To His Heart To His Hands. It also includes an instrumental version of Like A Rolling Stone, and an alternative Tombstone Blues

Bob gave a remarkable introduction to Michael Bloomfield at one particular gig

But there is more to it than this – however from here on you need a Spotify account.  The good news if you don’t have one is that you can get it free.

Obviously if you already have a free Spotify account you can just go in and type “Like a rolling stone Bloomfield”.

But back to the version of Groom…it would be interesting to compare it to the take recorded two days prior, without Bloomfield, which was included on the Trouble No More Set…

Here are the alternative lyrics

Prayed in the ghetto
with my face in the cement,
heard the last moan of a boxer,
I seen the massacre of the innocent,
felt around for the light switch,
became nauseated.
Just me, an overweight dancer,
between walls that had deteriorated.

Oh, set my affection on things above,
let nothing stand in the way of that love,
not even the Rock of Gibraltar.
If you see her on Fanning Street,
tell her that I still think she’s neat
and that the groom’s still waiting at the altar.

We… h’t’m’n ‘n’ highwaymen,
pushin’ women into robbery,
mistake your shyness for aloofness,
your silence for snobbery.
Never did get the message,
didn’t even know one was sent to me
for the madness of becomin’
what one was never meant to be.

Well, set my affection on things above,
let nothing stand in the way of that love,
not even the Rock of Gibraltar.
If you see her on Fanning Street,
well, tell her that I still think she’s neat
and that the groom’s still waiting at the altar.

Well, what can I say about Claudette
that wouldn’t come on back to haunt me.
I finally had to give her up
’bout the time she began to want me.
The Lord God has mercy
on them slandered and humiliated.
I’d a-done anything for that woman
if she’d only made me feel obligated.

Well, set my affection on things above,
let nothing stand in the way of that love,
not even the Rock of Gibraltar.
Well, if you see her on Fanning Street,
tell her that I still think she’s neat
and that the groom’s still waiting at the altar.

Locked into a time zone,
with a high-degree temperature,
wise men count no money,
fools standin’ around like furniture.
There’s a wall between you
and what you want and you got to leap it.
Tonight you got the power to take it,
tomorrow you won’t even need the power to keep it.

Well, set my affection on things above,
let nothing stand in the way of that love,
not even the Rock of Gibraltar.
If you see her on Fanning Street,
tell her that I still think she’s neat
and that the groom’s still waiting at the altar.

Wait on a minute,
I found the solution,
too rich for my blood
and I needed a transfusion.
Don’t know what I can say ’bout Claudette?
She’s in the mountains or the prairies,
she could be respectably married
or running a whorehouse in Buenos Aires.

Well, set my affection on things above,
let nothing stand in the way of that love,
not even the Rock of Gibraltar.
If you see her on Fanning Street,
tell her that I still think she’s neat
and that the groom’s still waiting at the altar.

Untold Dylan: who we are what we do

Untold Dylan is written by people who want to write for Untold Dylan.  It is simply a forum for those interested in the work of the most famous, influential and recognised popular musician and poet of our era, to read about, listen to and express their thoughts on, his lyrics and music.

We welcome articles, contributions and ideas from all our readers.  Sadly no one gets paid, but if you are published here, your work will be read by a fairly large number of people across the world, ranging from fans to academics who teach English literature.  If you have an idea, or a finished piece send it as a Word file to Tony@schools.co.uk with a note saying that it is for publication on Untold Dylan.

We also have a very lively discussion group “Untold Dylan” on Facebook with approaching 5000 active members. Just type the phrase “Untold Dylan” in, on your Facebook page or follow this link 

You’ll find some notes about our latest posts arranged by themes and subjects on the home page of this site.  You can also see details of our main sections on this site at the top of this page under the picture.  Not every index is complete but I do my best.

But what is complete is our index to all the 604 Dylan compositions and co-compositions that we have found, on the A to Z page.  I’m proud of that; no one else has found that many songs with that much information.  Elsewhere the songs are indexed by theme and by the date of composition. See for example Bob Dylan year by year.

And please do note our friends at  The Bob Dylan Project, which also lists every Dylan song in alphabetical order, and has links to licensed recordings and performances by Dylan and by other artists, plus links back to our reviews (which we do appreciate).

 

 

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