By Aaron Galbraith; additional thoughts from Tony (sorry Aaron, couldn’t resist)
“Doug had a hit record (“She’s About A Mover”) and I had a hit record (“Like A Rolling Stone”) at the same time (1965). So, we became buddies back then, and we played the same kind of music. We never really broke apart. We always hooked up at certain intervals in our lives.”
–Bob Dylan to Douglas Brinkley, Rolling Stone, May 11, 2009
One such time was in 1972 when Bob joined Sahm for the sessions for his first solo album “Doug Sahm And Band”. He contributed guitar, vocals, harmonica, organ plus a song to the sessions. Eight tracks appeared on the album with Bob’s involvement, a further three tracks from the session appeared on The Sir Douglas Band album “Texas Tornado” the following year. Then in 2005 , five more turned up on “The Genuine Texas Groover” (this is the one to get as it includes the above two albums plus 19 more tracks!).
Dylan’s contributions to “Doug Sahm and Band” are “(Is Anybody Going To) San Antone”, “It’s Gonna Be Easy”, “Poison Love”, “Wallflower”, “Dealer’s Blues”, “Faded Love”, “Blues Stay Away From Me” and “ Me And Paul”.
Here’s “Is anybody going” with Bob on backing vocals…
The three from “Texas Tornado” are “Tennessee Blues”, “Ain’t That Loving You” and “I’ll Be There”.
The five from “The Genuine Texas Groover” are “On The Banks Of The Old Ponchatrain”, “Hey, Good Lookin’”, “Please Mr Sandman”, “Colombus Stockade”, and “The Blues Walked On In”.
Here are just a few more of the best ones from across the three albums. We all know Wallflower so let’s skip that one.
But here’s a cover of Willie Nelson’s Me and Paul with Bob on guitar and harmonica…
“Tennessee Blues” with Bob on uncredited harmonica
Coming up next is the Hank Williams song “On The Banks Of The Old Ponchatrain”
There are some more great performances with Bob and all are on YouTube if you want to check out “Hey Good Looking” or “Columbus Stockade”.
But I thought I’d save my favourite for last. With Bob on guitar and vocals, it’s “Blues Stay Away From Me”.
Bob knows the song well, having already performed a run through of the track back in 1965 with Joan Baez at the Savoy Hotel.
Then again in 1987 he broke out the song again (the video says it’s with Tom Petty…but I’m fairly certain it’s Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead, although I could be wrong!)
Note from Tony: Aaron also included Bob Dylan’s cover of Sahm’s biggest hit – which he performed twice, and suggested he’d leave it out of this article so I could use it in my Live Rarities series. But he’s done the research so it should go into his piece.
Aaron writes: Bob covered Sahm’s biggest hit “She’s About A Mover only twice”…once in 1988 (I think with Sahm on stage)…and again in 2000, following his death in 1999
Now if it is quite a while since you have heard this (and here is Doug singing below) you might feel there is something of a similarity with “Outlaw Blues”. Or maybe that is just me getting carried away as usual.
And here is the original – this sounds far less like “Outlaw Blues” than Bob’s version, – it was clearly just the way Bob performed it. And
Ah… the days when 12 bar blues were hits, even when including “hey hey in the lyrics”.
Anyway, both “She’s about a mover” and “Outlaw Blues” were written in 1965. Which came first? I really don’t know.
Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about the song…
“The song was named the number one ‘Texas’ song by Texas Monthly, also charting at #15 on the UK Singles Chart [which explains why Tony knows it!] With a Vox Continental organ riff provided by Augie Meyers and a soulful vocal by lead singer-guitarist Doug Sahm, the track has a Tex-Mex sound. The regional smash became a breakaway hit, and the recording was used in the soundtracks of the films Echo Park (1986), American Boyfriends (1989), The Doors (1991), Riding in Cars with Boys (2001), Sorority Boys (2002), and Beautiful Darling (2010).
Previously in this series…
- Bob Dylan: side man. Farina, von Schmidt and Bob
- Dylan with Belafonte, Hester and Big Joe Williams
- Dylan and Barry Goldberg
- Jack Elliott, Geoff Muldaur, Neill Young (plus Carolyn Hester)
- Dylan the sideman: Bromberg, Booker T, Priscilla Jones, David Blue
- Playing with friends in the 80s
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