Bob Dylan: His 30 best songs from 2000 – 2012 (poll results)

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Back in May 2014:

We again challenge you to put together a top 10 list, or at least 10 songs (if you only provide a top 5 list, they will count as well). Songs 1-5 will receive 2 points each & 6-10 will receive 1 point.

Here is my list:

  1. Mississippi (2001)
  2. Tempest (2012)
  3. High Water (For Charley Patton) (2001)
  4. Roll On John (2012)
  5. Workingman’s Blues #2 (2006)
  6. I Feel A Change Coming On (2008)
  7. Ain’t Talkin’ (2006)
  8. Scarlet Town (2012)
  9. Po’ Boy (2001)
  10. Tin Angel (2012)

Hallgeir’s list:

1. Cross the Green Mountain
2. Mississippi
3. Ain’t Talkin’
4. Tin Angel
5. Forgetful Heart
6. Pay in Blood
7. High Water (for Charley Patton)
8. Scarlet Town
9. Workingman’s Blues #2
10. Beyond here lies nothin’

56 people voted, most of them with a top 10 list. Thanks for the input folks… this is a another GREAT list.

Here are the results of the JV community jury:


Mississippi (2001)

65 points


High Water (For Charley Patton) (2001)

56 points


Cross the Green Mountain (2002)

53 points


Workingman’s Blues #2 (2006)

48 points


Ain’t Talkin’ (2006)

46 points


Pay In Blood (2012)

35 points


Nettie Moore (2006)

30 points


Forgetful Heart (2009)

27 points


Scarlet Town (2012)

26 points


Huck’s Tune (2006)

25 points


Sugar Baby (2001)

24 points


Long & Wasted Years (2012)

23 points


Thunder On The Mountain (2006)

23 points


Tempest (2012)

21 points


Beyond here lies nothin’ (2009)

19 points


I Feel A Change Coming On (2008)

19 points


Lonesome Day Blues (2001)

16 points


Tell Ol’ Bill (2005)

16 points


Tin Angel (2012)

16 points


Po’ Boy (2001)

15 points


Soon After Midnight (2012)

15 points


When The Deal Goes Down (2006)

15 points


Spirit On The Water (2001)

14 points


Honest With Me (2001)

13 points


Summer Days (2001)

13 points


Duquesne Whistle (2012)

11 points


Roll On John (2012)

10 points


Tweedle Dum & Tweedle Dee (2001)

8 points


My Wife’s Hometown (2009)

6 points


Someday Baby (2006)

6 points

Songs with 5 or 4 points: Moonlight, Narrow Way, Cry A While, Early Roman Kings & Waiting For You

16 songs got 3 or less points.

Spotify Playlist:

Mississippi (live 2002):


Cross The Green Mountain:


49 thoughts on “Bob Dylan: His 30 best songs from 2000 – 2012 (poll results)”

  1. 1. Huck’s Tune
    2. ‘Cross The Green Mountain
    3. Highwater (For Charley Patton)
    4. I Feel A Change Coming On
    5. Ain’t Talkin’
    6. Tell Ol’ Bill
    7. Scarlet Town
    8. Beyond Here Lie Nothin’
    9. Long & Wasted Years
    !0. Pay In Blood

  2. 1: High Water (For Charlie Patton)
    2: Mississippi
    3: Nettie Moore
    4: Beyond Here Lies Nothin’
    5: Ain’t Talkin’
    6: Tin Angel
    7: Lonesome Day Blues
    8: The Levee’s Gonna Break
    9: Honest With Me
    10: Duquesne Whistle

  3. Okay Egil, I’ll do one just for you…!

    1: Pay in Blood (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    2: Long & Wasted Years (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    3: Po’ Boy
    4: Floater
    5. Lonesome Day Blues
    6. Highwater
    7. Forgetful Heart (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    8. Sugar Baby
    9: Roll On, John (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    10: Early Roman Kings (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)

  4. I agree – it is difficult. I’m being a bit difficult too. I’m including only Dylan songs (the ones he wrote, and I don’t mind how much he may have stolen, by the way) that date from the ’00s. I put Mississippi in the previous list as it dates from before Things Have Changed. As Tempest dates from the decade we’re currently in, I’ve put those songs in the next list (below). Apologies for appearing overly pedantic, but I think lists are only of interest if they adhere to particular criteria (for example, Dylan songs from each decade). I’m basing my choices primarily on the quality of the songs. I find most of the MT and TTL songs fall short of most of L&T. TTL sounds great but the songs are fairly lightweight; MT has some potential classics that I feel are compromised to some extent. I’d like to hear working versions of the MT songs (like the TTS Someday Baby). The performances of the Tempest songs in London last year were so good I’m happy to have them take up two thirds of this decade’s list already.

    The ’00’s (all album versions unless stated):

    1. Po’ Boy
    2. Floater (I also enjoyed it at Hammersmith 11/03)
    3. Lonesome Day Blues
    4. Highwater (Just about equal between the album version and Hop Farm June ’10)
    5. Forgetful Heart (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    6. Sugar Baby
    7. Bye & Bye (Birmingham 11/03)
    8. Honest With Me
    9. When The Deal Goes Down
    10. Thunder On The Mountain

    The ’10’s (incomplete!)

    1: Pay in Blood (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    2: Long & Wasted Years (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    3: Scarlet Town (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    4: Roll On, John (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    5: Early Roman Kings (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    6: Soon After Midnight (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)
    7: Tin Angel
    8: Tempest
    9: Narrow Way
    10: Duquesne Whistle (Royal Albert Hall 11/13)

    1. I like your approach Martin.

      The reason I mixed up 10s with 00s was that I felt only one album was a bit “boring”, but even more important: I would like to see how people compare the Tempest songs to the L&T, MT & TTL songs.

      But we’re just getting started with these polls. Live versions, tours, outtakes, etc… lots of goodies to ask people about 🙂

  5. nettie moor
    workingman’s blues
    cross the green mountain
    scarlet town
    thunder on the mountain
    forgetful heart
    pay in blood
    highwater( for charlie patton)
    when the deal goes down

    i agree with Hans, extremely difficult.

  6. 1. Ain’t Talkin’
    2. Forgetful Heart
    3. My Wife’s Home Town
    4. Scarlet Town
    5. I Feel A Change Coming On
    6. Early Roman Kings
    7. Beyond Here Lies Nothing
    8. Mississippi
    9. Shake Shake Mama
    10. Tin Angel

  7. Two points:
    1. For some reason everyone (including me) neglected the masterpiece – Things Have Changed.
    2. The main point from those lists is that Dylan’s 2000th work can be favorably compared with any other decade’s work including the 60th .

    1. Hi,

      “Things Have Changed” was recorded May 1999, and most “voters” included it in their “Best songs from 1990s” list.

  8. 1. Tempest
    2. It’s All Good
    3. O’ Little Town of Bethlehem (right to the final “Amen”)
    4. Lonesome Day Blues
    5. Ain’t Talkin’
    6. High Water
    7. Beyond Here Lies Nothin’
    8. Pay in Blood
    9. O’ Come All Ye Faithful (Latin and all)
    10. Must be Santa (even if he did “borrow” the arrangement)

  9. 1. Mississippi
    2. Tin Angel
    3. Tempest
    4. Tell ol’ Bill
    5. Huck’s Tune
    6. Can’t escape from you
    7. Lonsome Day Blues
    8. Nettie Moore
    9. Ain’t Talking
    10.When the Deal Goes Down

  10. 1. Workingman’s Blues #2
    2. Tin Angel
    3. Ain’t talkin’
    4. Po’ Boy
    5. Tempest
    6. Thunder on the Mountain
    7. Roll on John
    8. When the deal goes down
    9. Wasted years
    10. Nettie Moore

  11. 1) Po’ Boy
    2) Highwater (for Charlie Patton)
    3) Cross the Green Mountains
    4) Working Man Blues # 2
    5) Ain’t Talking
    6) Beyond Here Lies Nothing
    7) Forgetful Heart
    8) Duquesne Whistle
    9) Soon After Midnight
    10) Scarlet Town

  12. Cross the green mountain
    Hucks tune
    Tin angel
    High water
    Ain’t Talkin
    workingman’s blues
    Summer days
    Forgetful heart
    Pay in blood
    Scarlet town

  13. 1. Tin Angel ( very visual song, like an epic movie)
    2. Mississippi (feel like a stranger nobody sees)
    3. Spirit OnThe Water (you think I’m over the hill)
    4. Girl From The Red River Shore (go and lead a quiet life)
    5. High Water (especially the live version, the band was on fire that night)
    6. Working Man’s Blues (low wages are a reality if you want to compete abroad)
    7. Forgetful heart (If Poe sang this would be the song)
    8. When The Deal Goes Down (we all wear the same thorny crown)
    9. Most Of The Time (from the bootleg series #8 can’t remember what her lips felt like on mine)
    10. I Feel A Change Comin’ On (I’ve got the blood of the land in my voice)

    There really is no such thing as a bad Dylan song. There is so much going on un everything he writes!

  14. 1. mississippi
    2.tweedle dum and tweedle dee
    4.soon after midnight in blood
    6.hucks tune
    7.cant escape from you
    8.high water river shore
    10.must be santa!!!

  15. 1. Mississippi
    2. Honest with Me
    3. Workingman’s Blues #2
    4. Lonesome Day Blues
    5. Cross the Green Mountain
    6. Sugar Baby
    7. Duquesne Whistle
    8. Tell Ol’ Bill
    9. Po’ Boy
    10. Long and Wasted Years

  16. 1.when the deal goes down
    2.cross the green mountain
    4.soon after midnight
    5.duquesne whistle
    6.roll on john
    7.spirit on the water
    8.beyond the horizon
    9.nettie moore in blood

  17. 1. Working man´s blues
    2. Mississippi
    3. Nettie Moore
    4. Sugar Baby
    5. Tempest
    6. Pay in blood
    7. Forgetful heart
    8. Long and wasted years
    9. Huck’s Tune
    10.When the deal goes down

  18. 1. Mississippi
    2. Cross The Green Mountain
    3. Lonesome Day Blues
    4. Thunder On The Mountain
    5. High Water for Charley
    6. Pay In Blood
    7. Huck’s Tune
    8.Tell Ol Bil
    9. When the Deal Goes Down
    10. Summer Days

    1. Cross the Green Mountain
      Sugar Baby
      Ain’t Talkin
      Beyond Here Lies Nothing
      Huck’s Tune
      Tell Ol Bill
      High Water
      Summer Days
      Pay in Blood

  19. 1. Nettie Moore
    2. Cross the green mountain
    3. Mississippi
    4. Sugar baby
    5. Ain’t talkin’
    6. High water (for Charlie Patton)
    7. Forgetful heart
    8. Pay in blood
    9. Huck’s Tune
    10. When the deal goes down

  20. 1. Ain’t Talking
    2. Working Man Blues #2
    3. ‘Cross the Green Mountain
    4. Pay In Blood
    5. High Water (For Charley Patton)
    6. Spirit On The Water
    7. Tell Ol’ Bill
    8. Soon After Midnight
    9. Duquesne Whistle
    10. Po’ Boy

    I really don’t like TTL :/

  21. tweedle dum and tweedle dee
    high water
    cross the green mountain
    huck’s tune
    spirit on the water
    forgetful heart
    feel a change comin on
    long and wasted years
    early roman kings

  22. Workingman Blues 2
    Long and Wasted Years
    Soon After Midnight
    Nettie Moore
    Cross the Green Mountain
    Spirit on the Water
    Tell Ol’ Bill
    Beyond Here Lies Nothing

  23. Lonesome Day Blues
    Cry Awhile
    Summer Days
    The Levee’s Gonna Break
    Thunder on the Mountain
    It’s All Good
    Narrow Way
    Early Roman Kings
    Duquesne Whistle
    High Water(for Charlie Patton) live version 2003 on Tell Tale Signs

  24. Sugar Baby, High Water, Nettie Moore, Cross the Green Mountain, Huck’s Tune, Thunder on the Mountain, Ain’t Talking, Pay in Blood, Long and Wasted Years, Tempest

    I’m including “Nettie Moore” because I think its a great song and a great performance; that said, I find it difficult to listen to the song, its incredibly bleak, one of the bleakest songs Bob Dylan ever did. If I could include a number 11 song it would be “Forgetful Heart”

  25. After the drought of the nineties in which Mississippi was actually written and in my opinion the best song after Red River Shore and Highlands, but when that poll was on I was stuck in Italy on a wild island near Sicily without internet, 2000etc gave us a bucket of plenty, proving he had been feeding from the well of inspiration meanwhile… with a triad of records that stand in the shadow of H61R BIABH and BOB: Tempest L&T and MT. So this list is as difficult as the one for the sixties:

    1 + 2 Ain’t Talking/Cross the Green Mountain (the last one has me in tears each time and makes me think of the atmosphere of Blonde on Blonde but more human, the first is of frightening genius, just like Desolation Row
    3 Scarlet Town (another kid of Desolation Row)
    4 Long and Waisted Years (unique)
    5 Pay in Blood (a savage Like a Rolling Stone and that is saying something)
    6 Nettie Moore (unique also and lyrically better even than LAWY)
    7 High Water (live a roller coaster, on the album real deep like a track from The Times the are a-changing
    8 Po’ Boy (back to the Chaplin mask, great!)
    9 Tin Angel (a surreal take on the atmosphere of The Times etc)
    10 Working Man’s Blues (though Huck’s Tune moves me more, this one has class, I just don’t know, you folks decide 😉

  26. 1. Workingman Blues #2
    2. High Water
    3. Pay in Blood
    4. Long And Wasted Years
    5. Ain’t Talking
    6. Scarlet Town
    7. Huck’s Tune
    8. Sugar Baby
    9. Cross The Green Mountain
    10. Roll on John

  27. Forgetful Heart/Cross the Green Mountain/Ain’t Talkin’/High Water/I feel a change comin’ on/Soon after midnight/Pay in blood/Narrow Way/Scarlet Town/Beyond here lies nothing

  28. Sugar baby, lonesome day blues, Rollin and Tumblin, these dreams of you, PO’ Boy, honest With Me, thunder on the mountain, Cry a While,Duquesne whistle, tweedle dumb and tweedle dee

  29. Mississippi
    Thunder on the Mountain
    Pay in Blood
    Spirit on the Water
    Workingman’s Blues
    Beyond Here Lies Nothing
    My Wife’s Hometown
    Honest With Me
    Duquense Whistle

  30. oh forgot Forgetful Heart….um, I think I’d change it with I Feel a Change Coming on…please adjust accordingly

  31. 01. Cross the Green Mountain
    02 High Water (for Charlie Patton)
    03. Mississippi
    04. Roll on John
    05. Sugar Baby
    06. Ain’t Talking
    07. Nettie Moore
    08. Spirit on the Water
    09. Forgetful Heart
    09. I Feel A Change Comin’ On
    10. Little Drummer Boy
    just misses – Workingman Blues #2, Can’t Escape from You, Dixie, Change My Way of Thinking )w/ Mavis Staples)

  32. Huck’s Tune, Mississippi, Cross the Green Mountain, Thunder on the Mountain, Nettie Moore, Workingman Blues, Soon After Midnight, Duquesne Whistle, I Feel a Change , Soon After Midnight

  33. Sugar Baby
    Cross The Green Mountain
    Ain’t Talkin’
    My Wife’s Hometown
    Long And Wasted Years
    Forgetful Heart
    I Feel A Change Comin’ On
    Po’ Boy

  34. Ain’t Talkin’
    High Water
    I Feel A Change A Comin’ On
    Forgetful Heart
    Narrow Way
    Soon After Midnight
    Dreamin’ Of You
    Scarlet Town
    Pay In Blood
    Thunder On The Mountain

  35. 1. Nettie Moore
    2. Mississippi
    3. High Water
    4. Cross The Green Mountain
    5. Tempest
    6. Po’ Boy
    7. Working Man Blues
    8. Huck’s Tune
    9. Waiting For You
    10. Must Be Santa

  36. Aint Talking
    Nettie Moore
    Pay in Blood
    Working Mans Blues
    Honest with Me

    I hope that relects live performances as well. Aint Talking so many times, including Rome last year. Nettie Moore in Boston when you could hear a pin drop. Pay in Blood on record and at the univ tour in early 2013. Working mans Blues in Glasgow, and Honest With Me just for Bob himself – how many times does he have to make the point to us

    Frank Mayes

  37. 1. Moonlight
    2.Red River Shore
    3. Cross the Green Mountain
    4. Tell Ol Bill
    5. When the Deal Goes Down
    6. Mississippi
    7. Floater
    8. Workingmans-blues
    9. Tempest
    10. Beyond Here Lies Nothin

  38. Forgetful Heart
    Shake Shake Mama
    Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum
    Thunder On The Mountain
    Summer Days
    Workingman’s Blues #2
    Someday Baby
    Beyond Here Lies Nothin’
    Early Roman Kings
    Long And Wasted Years

  39. Scarlet town
    Cross the green mountain
    High Water
    Cry a While
    My wife’s hometown
    ain’t talkin
    nettie moore
    pay in blood

  40. Mississippi
    Cross The Green Mountain
    Scarlet Town
    Nettie Moore
    Working Mans Blues
    Thunder On The Mountain
    High Water for Charley
    Pay In Blood
    Huck’s Tune
    Tell Ol Bill

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