A Dylan cover a day: Till I fell in love with you in the north of Norway


By Tony Attwood

The North Cape monument marks the northernmost point of Norway“‘Til I fell in love with you”, from Time out of Mind was played live by Dylan nearly 200 times in an 18-year period and yet the number of cover versions that I’ve been able to find is very small.  Or put another way, very very small.

Maybe it’s because it is a 12-bar blues, and when singers cover Dylan they don’t want to do another 12-bar blues anymore.    Maybe it’s because it is a 12-bar blues with a lively, and indeed even jaunty rhythm and the artists looking to cover Dylan’s song don’t want their blues to be lively and jaunty.   Maybe desperation is more their thing – and to be fair this is one of the oddities about this song.  It is a lively 12-bar blues but the lyrics are the lyrics of negativity.

Or maybe it is just something else that I haven’t quite got.  That strange something that also means that “Summer Days” (another lively 12 bar blues) has also only had a few covers (and at least one of those is not the song by Dylan but a different song entirely). 

But whatever the reason, there is some good music to be found here.   Take for example Max Washington, seemingly an amateur performer working in his bedroom.   Now I am not saying that this is a great version of the song and that it should result in the artist being given a recording contract, but rather he shows that there’s life in the song, there are possibilities in the song that could go even further.


Albert Catiglia then takes all the possibilities forward and makes it sound like an absolute 12 bar classic – which in the sense that it was written by Bob it is.  I guess, if bands are looking for a Dylan song that hasn’t been covered much, they don’t want another 12 bar blues.

But there is life here and things to be had and done with the song, as Arve Gunnar Heloy shows us with “Til æ fikk dæ kjær.”

Now I am particularly grateful to “Expecting Rain” at this point for they tell us that this comes from a 2002 CD recorded not in Norwegian, as I had naively assumed up to this point, but in Nordnorsk, which is a Norwegian dialect from the Arctic north of the country.

And it is this 2002 release of “Time out of mind” in Nordnorsk that is possibly something you might not have come across before – and indeed I hadn’t ever heard of this until starting work on this article.  But I can now report that this recording comes from it a private release of 2000 copies in 2002 with the vocals performed by Tore Hestbråten.   The performers don’t give themselves a group name – instead we are just left with “Tankelaus Tid” as the title of the CD and the name of the project.  Literally, that phrase translates as “Thoughtless Time”.  Arve-Gunnar Heløy is both the vocalist and lead guitarist.

OK, that was a bit of a ramble from me, but I must admit the whole notion of translating Dylan into a Norwegian dialect from the Arctic north of the country is just overwhelming.  The music of Bob Dylan surely is truly universal.   And how interesting (for me if no one else) that this can be verified through the discovery of a song that virtually no one else wants to cover.

Shame on the rest of humanity.  High fives for the north Norwegians.

Here’s the rest of this series of reviews of Dylan covers.

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