July 31: Bob Dylan 5th recording session for Desire 1975


The result is a sound and a set of songs unlike anything Dylan or anyone else has ever done before…. The lyrics of “Sara” and “Abandoned Love” (and, for that matter, of “Isis” and “Hurricane”) could not be more perfect, but overall the triumph of Desire is musical
~Paul Williams (BD performing artist 1974-86)

Recorded in the summer lull before the first Rolling Thunder tour and released soon after it, the stand-out tracks are ‘Isis’, ‘Romance in Durango’ and ‘Black Diamond Bay’, but ‘Hurricane’, ‘One More Cup of Coffee’ and ‘Oh Sister’ are breathing down their necks.
~Michael Gray (BD Encyclopedia)

Studio E
Columbia Recording Studios
New York City, New York
31 July 1975
5th Desire session, produced by Don DeVito

The following night [31 July 1975], Dylan held another session, this time recording three songs. From this session, Dylan recorded the master take for “Isis” as well as master takes for “Abandoned Love” and “Sara.” Dylan’s wife Sara, the subject of the song that bore her name, also accompanied him to this session.


  1. Golden Loom
  2. Abandoned Love
    released 28 October 1985 – Biograph
  3. Abandoned Love
  4. Town (Reference)
  5. Town (Reference)
  6. Sara
  7. Sara
  8. Sara
  9. Sara
  10. Sara
  11. Sara
    Desire is an extraordinary album, and never more so than when Dylan shares himself, unambiguously, in “Sara”
    ~Paul Williams (BD Performing artist 1974-86) 
    released 16 January 1976 – Desire

  12. Isis (Bob Dylan–Jacques Levy/Bob Dylan)
  13. Isis (Bob Dylan–Jacques Levy/Bob Dylan)
    released 16 January 1976 – Desire

Recorded 8 pm – 4 am


  • Bob Dylan (guitar, vocal)
  • Emmylou Harris (vocal)*
  • Scarlet Rivera (violin)
  • Sheena Seidenberg (tambourine & congas)
  • Rob Stoner (bass & harmony vocal on Abandoned Love*)
  • Howie Wyeth (drums)

*Received an email from Rob Stoner, so I had to adjust some details.
Thanks Rob. 

bob dylan desire


5 thoughts on “July 31: Bob Dylan 5th recording session for Desire 1975”

  1. Pretty cool that Rob Stoner emailed you! Needless to say I love this album and all 3 cuts made on this day were amazing.

  2. I have yet to read a satisfying explanation of the input of Jacques Levy into this album. Dylan once said that “Joey” wasn’t his (I’m paraphrasing), but was Levy’s. Can anybody enlighten me, or direct me to a book or website that actually knows something clear about this. Thanks.

  3. Can you imagine this amazing album plus all this great outtakes in 1 release, it would be the greatest album ever

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