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Bob Dylan: Pledging My Time

Well, early in the mornin’
’Til late at night
I got a poison headache
But I feel all right
I’m pledging my time to you
Hopin’ you’ll come through, too

..a Chicago blues song with a totally different atmosphere from “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35.” Dylan gives a nod not only to the marching bands of the Vieux Carré in New Orleans but also to the creators of the legendary country and modern blues. Even if Mike Marqusee puts Dylan’s song on the same level as “Come On in My Kitchen” by Robert Johnson, “Pledging My Time” sounds above all like a tribute to the electric blues legend Elmore James and his version of “It Hurts Me Too.” The harmonica and Dylan’s voice are plaintive— the narrator tells of a strange love story full of contradictory feelings: “I got a poison headache / But I feel all right.” The song proceeds in this somber, melancholy style, with Robbie Robertson’s guitar and Hargus “Pig” Robbins’s piano creating its heavy atmosphere. Andy Gill wrote of the song’s “smoky, late-night club ambiance whose few remaining patrons have slipped beyond tipsy to the sour, sore-headed aftermath of drunk.”
-Margotin, Philippe; Guesdon, Jean-Michel. Bob Dylan All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Track

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