Listen: Bob Dylan – 5 Great Live Versions of “Like A Rolling Stone”





Once upon a time you dressed so fine
You threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn’t you?
People’d call, say, “Beware doll, you’re bound to fall”
You thought they were all kiddin’ you
You used to laugh about
Everybody that was hangin’ out
Now you don’t talk so loud
Now you don’t seem so proud
About having to be scrounging for your next meal

How does it feel
How does it feel
To be without a home
Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?

Some facts:

  • Dylan has played “Like A Rolling Stone” 2011times live
  • First time was in Newport, RI – July 25, 1965
  • Last performance: Indio, CA – October 14, 2016
  • Peak year: 1978 with 112 renditions

Odeon Theatre
Liverpool, England
14 May 1966

You’ve gone to the finest school all right, Miss Lonely
But you know you only used to get juiced in it
And nobody has ever taught you how to live on the street
And now you find out you’re gonna have to get used to it
You said you’d never compromise
With the mystery tramp, but now you realize
He’s not selling any alibis
As you stare into the vacuum of his eyes
And ask him do you want to make a deal?

How does it feel
How does it feel
To be on your own
With no direction home
Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?

Odeon Theatre
Newcastle, England
21 May 1966

You never turned around to see the frowns on the jugglers and the clowns
When they all come down and did tricks for you
You never understood that it ain’t no good
You shouldn’t let other people get your kicks for you
You used to ride on the chrome horse with your diplomat
Who carried on his shoulder a Siamese cat
Ain’t it hard when you discover that
He really wasn’t where it’s at
After he took from you everything he could steal

How does it feel
How does it feel
To be on your own
With no direction home
Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?

Blackbushe Aerodrome
Camberley, England
15 July 1978

Princess on the steeple and all the pretty people
They’re drinkin’, thinkin’ that they got it made
Exchanging all kinds of precious gifts and things
But you’d better lift your diamond ring, you’d better pawn it babe
You used to be so amused
At Napoleon in rags and the language that he used
Go to him now, he calls you, you can’t refuse
When you got nothing, you got nothing to lose
You’re invisible now, you got no secrets to conceal

How does it feel
How does it feel
To be on your own
With no direction home
Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?




Drammenshallen
Drammen, Norway
10 July 1981

Barrowland
Glasgow, Scotland
24 June 2004

  • Bob Dylan (vocal & piano)
  • Stu Kimball (guitar)
  • Larry Campbell (guitar, mandolin, pedal steel guitar & electric slide guitar)
  • Tony Garnier (bass)
  • George Recile (drums & percussion)

One of the worst things people can say when writing a book like this is “You really had to be there”. Yet, for, “Like A Rolling Stone”, that night, “you really had to be there”. Dylan’s voice was a blurred burr and yet powerful and compelling as it competed with a deafening crowd throughout this epic song.
~Andrew Muir (One More Night: Bob Dylan’s Never Ending Tour)


-Egil

3 thoughts on “Listen: Bob Dylan – 5 Great Live Versions of “Like A Rolling Stone””

    1. Yeah – but we’ve all heard that a zillion times, I like that the guys post versions of songs a little more obscure. 2 versions from ’66 might have been pushing this time though … ’65 version would have been cool!

  1. Great stuff – my favourite versions tend to have a prominent swirling organ (yes, I really typed that) in them. That’s what really makes the song special for me. Although I love the ’78 tour in general, the version of LARS is weak.

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