Category Archives: Bob Dylan – The songs he didn’t write

Bob Dylan: Mutineer (Warren Zevon)

bob dylan warren zevon

 

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum
Hoist the mainsail – here I come
Ain’t no room on board for the insincere
You’re my witness
I’m your mutineer

I was born to rock the boat
Some may sink but we will float
Grab your coat – let’s get out of here
You’re my witness
I’m your mutineer

‘Mutineer’ was originally released as the title track on Warren Zevon’s 1995 album of that
name.

warren zevon mutineer

 

BF: Who are some of your favorite songwriters?
Bob Dylan: Buffett I guess. Lightfoot. Warren Zevon. Randy. John Prine. Guy Clark. Those kinds of writers.
~Bob Dylan (to Huffington Post – May 2009)

original version:

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Bob Dylan: That Lucky Old Sun

bob-dylan-shadows-in-the-night-1024x696Up in the mornin’, out on the job
Work like the devil for my pay
But that lucky old sun has nothin’ to do
But roll around heaven all day

  1. Song facts & different versions
  2. Lyrics
  3. Bob Dylan
  4. Bob Dylan versions

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Bob Dylan: Rank Strangers To Me (Albert E. Brumley)

bob dylan rank strangers to me

I wandered again
To my home in the mountains
Where in youth’s early dawn
I was happy and free.
I look for my friends,
But I never could find ’em.
I found they were all
Rank strangers to me.

Albert E. Brumley

“Rank Strangers To Me” is a song written/arranged by Albert E. Brumley.

Wikipedia:

Birth name Albert Edward Brumley
Born October 29, 1905
near Spiro, Oklahoma, United States
Died November 15, 1977 (aged 72)
Powell, Missouri, United States
Genres Christian

Albert Edward Brumley (1905–1977) was an American shape note gospel music composer and publisher.

albert brumley

I’ll Fly Away,” “Turn Your Radio On,” “If We Never Meet Again (This Side of Heaven),” “I’ll Meet You In The Morning,”, “He Set Me Free” & “Rank Strangers To Me” are among a host of favorites written by Albert E. Brumley. He wrote over 800 songs. He established the Albert E. Brumley Sundown to Sunup Gospel Sing (now Albert E. Brumley Gospel Sing) in 1969 in Springdale, Arkansas. Brumley has been inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, Gospel Music Hall of Fame, and Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame.

Continue reading Bob Dylan: Rank Strangers To Me (Albert E. Brumley)

Bob Dylan: Barbara Allen (traditional)

bob dylan barbara allen

In Charlotte town, not far from here,
There was a fair maid dwellin.’
And her name was known both far and near,
And her name was Barb’ry Allen.

‘Twas in the merry month of May,
Green buds they were swellin’,
Poor William on his death-bed lay,
For the love of Barb’ry Allen.

…. And, you know, then the folk music, which I’d heard somewhat to a degree. I knew people that sung Barbara Allen and stuff like that. And I listened to all that music.
~Bob Dylan (to Nat Hentoff – Autumn 1965)

Wikipedia:

Written by Traditional
Published 17th century (earliest known)
Language English
Form Broadside ballad and folksong

Barbara Allen” (Child 84, Roud 54) is a traditional ballad originating in England and Scotland, which immigrants introduced to theUnited States, where it became a popular folk song. Roud and Bishop described it as, “…far and away the most widely collected song in the English language — equally popular in England, Scotland and Ireland, and with hundreds of versions collected over the years in North America.”

The story is a simple one. In “Scarlet Town,” a young man named Sweet William lies on his death bed and calls for Barbara Allen. He asks for her love; she coldly informs him that he is dying. There is some discussion over who slighted whom. She leaves and is smitten by remorse when she hears “the death bell knelling.” She asks her father to dig her grave. This done, she “will die for him tomorrow,” and buried next to Sweet William in the old churchyard, a rose that blossoms from his heart, and a briar that springs from hers, “grew and grew… till they twined a true love’s knot.”
~Lenny Kaye, liner notes for “O Love Is Teasin'” (Elektra 9 60402-1-U, 1985).

He sent his man down to town
To the place that she was dwellin’
Sayin’, “Master bids your company,
If your name is Barb’ry Allen.”

Oh slowly, slowly she got up
To the place where he was lyin’,
And when she pulled the curtain back,
Said, “Young man, I b’lieve you’re dying!”

Other notable versions

Joan Baez:

Pete Seeger:

Continue reading Bob Dylan: Barbara Allen (traditional)

Bob Dylan – Across The Borderline (Cooder/Hiatt/Dickinson) – Audio & Video

Dylan cooder hiatt dickinson

 

There’s a place where I’ve been told
Every street is paved with gold
And it’s just across the borderline
And when it’s time to take your turn
Here’s one lesson that you must learn
You could lose more than you’ll ever hope to find

 

Other versions

Written by Ry Cooder, John Hiatt & Jim Dickinson, this beautiful song was released on Ry Cooder’s 1987 album “Get Rhythm”.

ry cooder - get rhythm

1. Ry Cooder his album “Get Rhythm” (1978):



Bob Dylan played Ry Cooder & Freddy Fender’s version on show 44 (themed “Texas”) of his “Theme Time Radio Hour”.

freddy-fender-across-the-borderline-mca

2. Here is Freddy Fender:

A couple of more great versions before we move on to Dylan..

Willie Nelson - AcrossTheBorderline

3. Willie Nelson’s version from his 1993 album.. “Across the Borderline”:

jim dickinson a thousand footprints

4. Jim Dickinson live –  from the album “A thousand footprints in the sand” (1997 ):

Bruce Springsteen has covered this pearl many times… there is a couple of great videos on YouTube, BUT my Springsteen choice has to a “audio only YouTube”:

bruce springsteen jackson brown bonnie raitt

5. Bruce Springsteen (with Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt) – 17 November 1990 – Shrine Auditorium, LA:

 

Bob Dylan versions:

When you reach the broken promised land
And every dream slips through your hands
Then you’ll know that it’s too late to change your mind
‘Cause you’ve paid the price to come so far
Just to wind up where you are
And you’re still just across the borderline

Continue reading Bob Dylan – Across The Borderline (Cooder/Hiatt/Dickinson) – Audio & Video