Playlist: Bob Dylan overlooked songs by decade – the 1970s

bob dylan florida april 1976Hidden gems, buried treasures, deep cuts, forgotten or overlooked tracks, these songs have many descriptions. What are they?

Well, to me, it’s a great song that seldom (or never) is on the “best-of” lists of the artist, and it could have/should have been. They are sometimes alternative recordings or “out of print” releases.

I am talking about great songs that are often overlooked. We are talking about personal favorites that you wouldn’t rate among the artists top 20 (maybe), but deserve more praise and recognition than they get.

These are songs which takes its programming from non-single album tracks, B-sides, and other obscure songs.

While we were dissecting the Bob Dylan classics, other good songs fades into the background, and crucially, these tracks will help Dylan fans to discover “the whole story”.  As a Bob Dylan music fan, I have a responsibility to help introduce fellow Dylanologists to my own musical discoveries, particularly when they draw attention to forgotten brilliance. Bob Dylan has a vast catalog  that contain some “hidden” songs that his biggest fans know by heart  just as much. For every one of his songs that turned into classics, there are other essentials scattered through his production.

But let’s face it: there’s no such thing as a “buried treasure” in the Bob Dylan catalogue.  How can there be?
This is the most over-analyzed artist in the music history.  Most of what he has recorded are readily available in the form of an official CD/LP/Stream and more material are becoming available each year. So, these are songs that the hardened Dylan fan knows but are often overlooked by casual listeners. These are tracks that people at large might not know very well.

So what are these lists all about (there will be six of them)?
They are a collection of 10 tracks per decade, as chosen by me (Hallgeir), which you may not hear enough. Lists of fantastic stuff by an artist that has made a lot of great “unknown” stuff, but material that doesn’t get heavy rotation on the radio or the streaming services.

So with that in mind, and in celebration of the eternal hunt for lesser known genus, here are ten great overlooked songs recorded, but not necessarily written, by Bob Dylan from the 70s. There will follow a post for all of his decades as a recording artist.

Check out the 1960s list

Overlooked songs the1970s

– Sign on the window (New Morning, 1970)
– It hurts me too (Self Portrait, 1970)
– Billy 4 (Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid, 1973)
– Going, Going , Gone (Planet Waves, 1974)
– Wedding Song (Planet Waves, 1974)
– Black Diamond Bay (Desire, 1975)
– Where Are You Tonight? (Journey Through Dark Heat) (Street Legal,1978)
– New Pony (Street Legal, 1978)
– True Love Tends to Forget (Street-Legal, 1978)
– Precious Angel (Slow Train Coming, 1979)

Bob Dylan-Where Are You Tonight (Journey Through Dark Heat)- Live,Charlotte, 1978:

– Hallgeir

12 thoughts on “Playlist: Bob Dylan overlooked songs by decade – the 1970s”

  1. Abandoned Love! Possibly my favorite Dylan song of the 70’s. How on Earth did this not make the album?

  2. what song is playing when Billy the Kid gives up to pat garret at the cabin at stinking springs. i have never heard it before or since.

    1. The song is called Billy Surrenders, and it’s not on the official soundtrack album. There are two versions (that I know of) available on bootlegs from the Pat Garret sessions, but none of them have the chorus, the “lalalalalala” just the music.

      If anyone knows more please tell me 🙂

      1. Thank you so much for responding. I will keep my eye out for the bootleg Pat Garret to hear it. What a scene!

  3. So much of what Bob did in the ’70s was outstanding. Black Diamond Bay, Where Are You Tonight, Going Going Gone and Billy 4 are tremendous choices! I would add personal faves Baby Stop Crying, Something There Is About You, I Believe In You, We Better Talk This Over, One More Weekend, Clothes Line Saga, Open The Door, Homer, Still In Town, Blowin’ In The Wind (slow blues version).

    1. You’ve got me diving into stuff from this period! Delete Open the Door and Clothes Line Saga, above, and instead add Bring Me A Little Water, Sign On The Cross and These Hands. I think.

      1. Sign on the cross will be on one of the lists (when it was officially released). Bring me a little water and These hands will get another listen from me.

        Thanks for your comments!

  4. Looks like you are not considering “live” versions – otherwise I’d add Abandoned Love from The Other End Club. Studio version good too.

    “Nobody ‘cept You” is another personal favourite of mine that I’d add.

    From the religious period, I’d go with “Trouble in Mind” rather than a track off such a well-selling album. It’s one of Bob’s most nakedly confessional songs I think.

    “Ain’t No Man Righteous” if we are allowed live tracks too.

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