My favourite Bob Dylan bootleg 1983: Infidels outtakes (Rough cuts)

Bob Dylan - Rough Cuts (Infidels Studio Sessions) - Front


My favourite Bob Dylan bootleg 1983: Infidels outtakes (Rough cuts)

 For the first time in his career, Dylan books a month of sessions to record an album. The sessions will take place at the Power Station in New York, across the way from Sony Studios. Dylan coproduces the album with Mark Knopfler. The band they have devised for the sessions ranks as one of his most inspired gatherings. The rhythm section is Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare. The two-pronged guitar attack is to be provided by Knopfler and ex-Stones axeman Mick Taylor. Keyboardist Alan Clark has been enlisted from Knopfler’s band. The sessions result in 16 original new songs, 14 cover versions, and a couple of instrumentals (copyrighted under the titles, “Dark Groove” and “Don’t Fly Unless It’s Safe”).
~Clinton Heylin (Still on the Road: The Songs of Bob Dylan Vol. 2, . 1974-2008)

This is a fantastic bootleg/collection, the material and versions recorded included in these month-long sessions are impressive. The Infidels albums and singles, Death is not the end on the album Down in the Groove, Five tracks on Bootleg series vol 1-3: Blind Willie McTell (acoustic), Tell Me, Someone’s got a hold of my heart, Foot of Pride and Lord Protect My Child.

“…This Power Station material has also been released, in part, in several packages; under various titles. The quality of this material is great. There is some slight tape hiss, and at times ‘dead air’ noise. The overall sound, success of  ‘Infidels’, and desire for studio outtakes has been the spawn of the numerous releases. 

The outtakes themselves are most highly recommended. There really seems to be no particular standout as far as the various versions of CDs, … If you own one, for all practical purposes you own then all.”

Here we have some brilliant outtakes from the Infidels sessions. Most importantly the electric versions of “Blind Willie McTell”. This is worth the whole package, really.

Other entries in this series:

My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 1962: The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan Outtakes
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 1969: The Dylan / Cash Sessions
My favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 2011: Funen Village Denmark June 27
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 2012: The Day of Wine and Roses, Barolo, Italy July 16
My Favourite Bob Dylan bootleg from 2014: Gothenburg Sweden July 15

Another bootleg from the same sessions


Studio A
Power Station
New York City, New York
April 11 – May 17.

  1. Sweetheart Like You
  2. Someone’s Got A Hold Of My Heart
  3. Lord Protect My Child
  4. Angel Flying Too Close To The Ground
  5. Foot Of Pride
  6. I And I
  7. Tell Me
  8. Union Sundown
  9. Julius And Ethel
  10. Jokerman
  11. License To Kill
  12. Man Of Peace
  13. Don’t Fall Apart On Me Tonight
  14. Neighborhood Bully
  15. Blind Willie McTell (electric)
  16. This Was My Love (Jim Harbert)
  17. This Was My Love (Jim Harbert)
  18. Angel Flying Too Close To The Ground
  19. Dark Groove (Instrumental)
  20. Don’t Fly Unless It’s Safe (Instrumental)
  21. Clean Cut Kid
  22. Death Is Not The End
  23. Sweetheart Like You
  24. Union Sundown
  25. Sweetheart Like You (Several rehearsals)

dylan knopfler
Infidels outtakes by alldylan on Grooveshark

rough cuts back

– Hallgeir


16 thoughts on “My favourite Bob Dylan bootleg 1983: Infidels outtakes (Rough cuts)”

    1. jzsnake,

      I’m widjew on this comment. Neighborhood tells a true story which is too nasty for those who are ‘too blind to see’ to really understand.


  1. The question is: what “Infildels” would you have put out if you were the person called to select and sequence tracks from the sessions? Thanks for your posts.

  2. Am still searching for one on vinyl. And though the selection on the official album has its reasons (one being that McTell is unfinished, but would have been worthy of inclusion if he had stuck to his great workmethod of the sixties, another that Foot of Pride bears a lot of resemblance in sound to Man of Peace, which I at least prefer because of its imagery), I can envison Infidels as a interesting double elpee. Still the mix on the official is quite atrocious and that already makes it for me a frustrating entry in the pantheon of brilliant releases. I for one have given up listening to it and concur with Dylan himself, who said there were some good songs written by him in the eighies, he just can’t bear to hear them anymore in their released versions.

    1. I agree with you on almost all, but I think Blind Willie McTell sounds very finished and think it should get an official release.

      Thank you insightful comments

      – hallgeir

      1. Blind Willie McTell is finished enough for me too, sticking to first takes or at least trying not to play them to death in the studio had been his strength, but the whole technical way of recording that took over in the studio in those years just did not leve him the breath to do so… but he learned to do it his own way again, with superb results, also in his last treasure, Shadows, which with a little more roughness and a little less reverence even would have been better maybe, but I like it already in its proper subtlety., though I understand why for those who mistake Sinatra with bourgeois and restrict rock ‘n roll to fast and furious, Shadows comes as a nuisance…

        1. Shadows is hard to like for me (even if the new video was fun), it’s not that Sinatra is bourgeois, but I think you got me pegged about that rock’n roll feeling. It feels to slow for me. I will try more, I will play it a lot more and I look forward to hear more of the material in a live setting. Right now it is one of the Dylan albums I enjoy the least. I feel like sleeping after a few tunes, hopefully it will sink in. If it does, I will be the first to admit I was wrong, but right now it doesn’t seem likely to happen.

          Thanks again for your interesting views

          – Hallgeir

          1. sometimes the less you try, the better it can catch you off guard… and there’s so many good stuff of him around, you don’t have to ‘get’ this curious beast… while the too careful singing, which in fact accentuates the slippery moments, first had me catching my breath, preventing me from letting the heavy atmosphere sink in, one night all those memories of my late wife took me to a nightly starry and silvery ebb tide feeling, that has stayed with me since whenever that spooky steel guitar and sincere voice full of the elemental deepness of the raw blues and morbid country, laying behind rock ‘n roll, envelop me in their trance…

            and by the way. keep your good work going, it’s always inspiring reading your posts

          2. Thank you!

            That is one of the best reasons I’ve read about why Shadows is worth listening to

            Always good to hear from you

            – Hallgeir

  3. “Outfidels” was one of the first bootlegs I heard. I still love that title !

    What an album Infidels could have been.

    1. I think it is a good album as it is, but you are right, it could have been a very special album

      Thanks for the feedback!

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