Author Archives: Tony Attwood

Outlaw Blues, On the Road Again, and Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream

By Tony Attwood When I began writing reviews of Dylan’s songs I had no thought that I would reach a situation in which it would be necessary to review a whole group of songs together to make sense of them … Continue reading

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Leopard skin pill-box hat

By Tony Attwood Some 45 years on, working through the first LP of the original Blonde on Blonde album is a bemusing and confusing affair.  There’s the knock about Rainy Day Women as an opening track – a scene setter, … Continue reading

Posted in Blonde on Blonde | 9 Comments

Stuck inside of Mobile with the Memphis blues again: Dylan visits WC Handy

by Tony Attwood There are two ways to interpret a song like this: by trying to find a meaning in the words, or by trying to link the title to something that may be significant about. Our normal third route … Continue reading

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“If not for you” – a simple love song of distinction

“If Not for You” was released in 1970.  The Dylan version comes from “New Morning”.  Shortly after that George Harrison released a version.  It is a song that Dylan also recorded with George Harrison, and which he has often performed … Continue reading

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One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later). Is it Dylan’s hatred of women or just a failed affair?

By Tony Attwood This review updated 3 August 2018 with the addition of videos and further commentary.  In particular the one brilliant revisited version of the song from 1978 – one of the great, great, great moments from the Never … Continue reading

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Knocking on heaven’s door

By Tony Attwood How many Dylan songs can you name which have a chorus consisting of the title sung over and over again?  “How does it feel?” comes up twice on “Like a Rolling Stone”, but for the moment I … Continue reading

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You ain’t going nowhere

Why? What’s the point? Well we can speculate, but they were just songs that came out from Dylan during a very fruitful period of songwriting, and not everything can be Desolation Row. The lyrics change from version to version.  Dylan … Continue reading

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I’ll be your baby tonight

By Tony Attwood “I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight” was recorded in the autumn of 1967 by Bob Dylan and released on the John Wesley Harding album. Before we get anywhere near the analysis of the song it is worth noting … Continue reading

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Dylan’s Rainy Day Women #12 & 35: the meaning, the music and the live versions.

By Tony Attwood Updated 8 August 2018 with occasional text changes and four new video presentations  Can you perform a 12 bar blues using a trombone, tuba, piano, bass, percussion, and a constant tambourine sitting on each and every beat?  … Continue reading

Posted in Blonde on Blonde | 5 Comments

Quinn the Eskimo: Bob Dylan having a laugh and 3 reinterpretations taking us elsewhere

By Tony Attwood By no means Bob Dylan’s only nursery rhyme, but probably the only one to get to number one in the charts when re-recorded.  And it has been recorded a number of times since in rather surprising ways.  … Continue reading

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Just like a woman. The meaning of the music and lyrics of Bob Dylan’s song

By Tony Attwood Three new videos added July 2018. From as early as 1963 Dylan was highly engaged in writing “lost love” songs with an extra edge. “Lost Love” was defined by the English academic Professor Keith Swanwick of London … Continue reading

Posted in Essential Bob Dylan, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

One too many mornings: the start of a journey that led to Tangled up in Blue

By Tony Attwood One of the many reasons why “One too many mornings” stands out is that its original release placed it straight after that questioning, probing, aggressive song, “With God on Our Side.” Two songs could hardly more different.  … Continue reading

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“I want you” – Bob Dylan’s song fast, slow and what Springsteen made of it all.

By Tony Attwood Updated July 2018 with a stunning performance by Bruce Springsteen, take 1 from the original recording session, the second live performance, the slower versions and some reflections five years on from the original review. In a 1966 … Continue reading

Posted in Blonde on Blonde | 7 Comments

It’s all over now, baby blue. Bob Dylan’s song is as powerful now as it was when he wrote it

By Tony Attwood This review updated July 2018, with a few changed comments, a copy of the song that Dylan cited as his source, and a performance of the song found by Pat Sludden, which really takes into somewhere completely … Continue reading

Posted in Bringing it all Back Home | 23 Comments

90 miles an hour down a dead end street

By Tony Attwood It is strange where research can take you. Let me start from a simple observation: I think Dylan’s recording of this song is awful.  If you are going to take a song very slowly and have a … Continue reading

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“Can you please crawl out your window?” The meaning of the lyrics and the music

By Tony Attwood Updated 2 May 2017 and 12 Feb 2018 My addition on 12 Feb 2018 is simple: I have just heard the versions of “Crawl” on The Cutting Edge, and suddenly the song makes sense.  There is a … Continue reading

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Maybe Someday – the forgotten masterpiece. (Knocked out loaded)

By Tony Attwood Updated 20 September 2017 with link to the song at  the end. If I could be given something impossible, just once, I would ask for the studio tape of Maybe Someday, and the opportunity to remix it.  … Continue reading

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Silvio: with lyrics by Robert Hunter, a brilliant live version and strange comments.

By Tony Attwood This review updated July 2018 with the addition of videos.  I did think about trying to adjust the review in the light of the comments made when it was first published but I can’t really see how … Continue reading

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Shelter from the storm: Dylan the poet laureate, Dylan the myth maker

This review updated 19 July 2018, with the addition of four videos of the song, plus the missing verse and a short debate on the meaning of mythopoeic and a comparison with Gormenghast.  Plus a list of other articles that to greater … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Dylan’s “Tangled up in blue”. The meaning of the lyrics and music of the original version

This review (updated 10 August 2017) is of the original album version of “Tangled”.  For the review of the completely revised “Real Live” version please see here 10 August 2017: link to live version video added at end of the … Continue reading

Posted in Blood on the Tracks | 36 Comments