Dylan Cover a Day: Most likely you go your way

By Tony Attwood

At first I wasn’t at all sure about this 100 miles an hour version of the song, but it really has grown on me.  It contains the accent on the last word of each line as Bob has done in some performances.

But there is a problem with a performance at this speed; it is very hard to put in any nuances.  Yes there is a nice bit of harmony at the end of the verse and the harmonica gets a nice solo in the instrumental but otherwise the slight relaxation of the vocals in the post-instrumental verse is pretty much all we have by way of innovation once the tempo has been set.

Terrance Simien & The Zydeco Experience however do manage to rework the song a little and gain a much more relaxed feel.   I am not sure this version tell us anything new – until we get to the two chorus lines, but I would just like to have something more to appreciate.  The “Time will tell” line however does bring an element of freshness

In all there are two problem with this song: the instrumental concept at the start of the piece is so clearly identified with the song, we know where we are before we start.  And then there is the opening chord (the supertonic to be precice) which is very, very unusal for a rock song as an opening.   It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a clue what I am talking about there, you’ll know the feeling – hear that opening and you know what the song is going to be.

So even the Yardbirds, who most certainly knew a thing or two about how to play this type of music really struggled to make any sort of difference

Patti LaBelle and her arrangers really did try with a long introduction, and keeps on innovating all the way through.  It is certainly refreshing, but after the first verse I felt, well, ok, yep, I get it, and how much more of this is there.  Which is the old problem – I know the song too well.  I think I’m just getting old.

But not for the first time Jochen’s superior knowledge comes to the rescue with a really delightful recording of the song.  And I was tempted to wipe out my references to all the other versions of the song that are included above, but then I thought I would leave them in, because they show us all how hard it can be to escape Bob’s original thoughts.  But in the end it is always possible, given enough talent.

Now it is the old song, and it is a new song.  And believe me, being both, well, that ain’t easy.

Interestingly that wasn’t Jochen’s prime choice for a cover of this song – and curiously he made a reference to the getting copyright clearance.  Perhaps that is why the video he found is no longer available.  But click on this link and you might well be able to get to it.


For me it doesn’t match Gerry van der Laan but it is worth a listen – if for nothing other than the instrumental break.

And these final two recordings do show us once again: with talent and a real insight of what there is within the song beyond that which we immediately hear, something interesting can be achieved.

The Dylan Cover a Day series



  1. Unless you completely change the words to” You Go Your Way” you can’t escape from Dylan’s thoughts, expressed through words, which he accompanies with music that contributes to the overall tragicomic atmosphere of the piece.

    Giving the song a more sorrowful tone(Laan) though there’s humorous imagery therein , could be said to subtract from to the song rather than adding to it (unless you ignore the words).

    Likewise the same could be said of the deliberate low burleque(laBelle) of the piece by making it overly flippant.

    Master Bob on his stilts crushes both of them.

  2. Laan attempts to firm up the tragic aspect of the lyrics by singing “This time I won’t tell you why that is” instead of the why-bother, “This time I’m not going to tell you why that is”;

    But the change of wording is too little, and comes too late.

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