Lou Reed – Foot of Pride – The Best Dylan Covers
“That’s the song I picked to do at Bobfest (in New York in 1992). I’d been listening to it almost every day for two months. It’s so fucking funny: ‘Did he make it to the top? Well, he probably did and dropped.’ There are so many verses, it was impossible to learn. G.E. Smith, who was playing with me, turned the pages. There is a lot of anger here. It’s not the Three Stooges.”
– Lou Reed
Foot of Pride is an outtake from the Infidels sessions. As with most Dylan albums, outtakes and rough mixes from Infidels were bootlegged and these sessions had some very interesting gems. A take of Foot of Pride with Bob Dylan was later released on The Bootleg Series Vol. 1-3.
Bob Dylan has not performed the song live (to my knowledge) but Lou Reed does a great job.
On October 16, 1992, New York City’s hottest concert ticket was the live gathering of musical giants, legend and archetypes who’d come to Madison Square Garden to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Bob Dylan’s first Columbia Records album and play a selection of Dylan songs from culturally iconic (John Mellencamp’s no-nonsense “Like A Rolling Stone”) to bootleg obscure (Lou Reed’s acerbic take on “Foot of Pride”) that had moved and inspired them over the decades.
The four hour show, performed for a sold-out audience of more than 18,000 fans and live-cast around the world, brought together an unprecedented roster of artists and icons including Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, Lou Reed, The Clancy Brothers, Ritchie Havens, Johnny Winter, Roger McGuinn, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Stevie Wonder, Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Ron Wood, Chrissie Hynde, The O’Jays, Eddie Vedder, Sinéad O’Connor, Tracy Chapman, George Harrison (then making his first US concert appearance in 18 years) and more. Providing musical backing throughout the show was an ensemble dream team featuring three members of Booker T. & The M.G.’s, G.E. Smith on guitar with Jim Keltner and Anton Fig on drums.
Dubbed “Bobfest” on stage by a jubilant Neil Young, the 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration reached a transcendent crescendo with an unforgettable performance and all-star jam featuring the evening’s honoree.
Viewed anew from a 20-year perspective, Bob Dylan – The 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration – Deluxe Edition is a remarkable testament to the enduring legacy and ongoing musical influence of Bob Dylan. That valedictory gathering from more than 20 years ago proved to be a mid-career retrospective of a recording artist and performer who continues to inform and transform the cultural landscape.
Lou Reed – Foot of Pride (audio):
Lou Reed – Foot of Pride (video, concert footage):
“Reed’s 10-minute talking roadhouse blues gives new life to this seldom-covered track. If not Lou, then… we have to pick a new song because we’ve never heard anyone else tackle it.”
– Paste Magazine
Lou Reed interview where he talks about Foot of pride and Bob Dylan (and Leonard Cohen):