Bob Dylan Best Songs from the 80s – 6 different lists (Rolling Stone, Uncut, The Guardian and more..)

In the time of my confession, in the hour of my deepest need
When the pool of tears beneath my feet floods every newborn seed

Four of the original lists aren’t actually made up of songs only from the 1980s, but I’ve pulled out the songs recorded in the 1980s and ranked accordingly.

The Guardian

From the list “Bob Dylan’s 50 greatest songs – ranked!” – April 2020

    1. Blind Willie McTell – The Bootleg Series Volumes 1–3 (Rare & Unreleased) 1961–1991 (1991)
    2. The Groom’s Still Waiting at the Altar – Biograph (1985)
    3. Most Of The Time – Oh Mercy (1989)
    4. Brownsville Girl – Knocked Out Loaded (1986)
    5. Jokerman – Infidels (1983)

Blind Willie McTell

The Groom’s Still Waiting at the Altar

Continue reading “Bob Dylan Best Songs from the 80s – 6 different lists (Rolling Stone, Uncut, The Guardian and more..)”

Bob Dylan’s Best Songs: Blind Willie McTell (recorded May 5, 1983)

Blind-Willie-McTell & Bob Dylan

Kurt Loder: I heard an outtake from the Infidels sessions called Blind Willie McTell. Is that ever going to come out? It’s a great song.
Bob Dylan: I didn’t think I recorded it right. But I don’t know why that stuff gets out on me. I mean, it never seems to get out on other people.
~Kurt Loder interview 1984

[Blind Willie McTell] He was just a very smooth operating bluesman. His songs always reminded me of… As trains, but that ‘s just my hang up, you know, trains. And his vocal style, and his sound seems to fit right in with that lonesome sound. His kinda, you know, Ragtime… kinda thing on a 12 string guitar, so it made everything he did sound, you know, give it a little higher pitch. You know, you could probably call… You could probably call… you could probably say he was the Van Gogh of Blues. You could probably say he was the Van Gogh of the country Blues.
~Bob Dylan (Eliot Mintz Interview, March 1991)

Released version:

Unreleased “electric” version:

Continue reading “Bob Dylan’s Best Songs: Blind Willie McTell (recorded May 5, 1983)”

January 17: Mick Taylor was born in 1949 , here playing Blind Willie McTell by Bob Dylan

Happy 72nd birthday Mick Taylor!

Any fan of classic rock needs no introduction to Mick Taylor. The legendary  guitarist first made his mark in the 1960′s playing with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers as the successor to Eric Clapton. As if this wasn’t enough, Mick Taylor would eventually go on to replace the late Brian Jones in The Rolling Stones. He would  leave the Stones in 1974, but he was a big part on some of their most seminal albums, such as Let it BleedSticky Fingers, and Exile on Main Street. Over the years, Taylor would carve out his own solo career, but would continue to maintain contact with the Stones, eventually being present for the band’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.

In 1983, Taylor joined Mark Knopfler and played on Dylan’s Infidels album. He also appeared on Dylan’s live album Real Live, as well as the follow-up studio album Empire Burlesque. In 1984, Dylan asked Mick Taylor to assemble an experienced rock and roll band for a European tour he signed with Bill Graham. Ian McLagan was hired to play piano and hammond organ, Greg Sutton to play bass and Colin Allen, a long-time friend of Taylor, on drums. The tour lasted for four weeks at venues such as Munich’s Olympic Stadium Arena and Milan’s San Siro Stadium, sharing the bill with Carlos Santana and Joan Baez, who appeared on the same bill for a couple of shows.

He played with The Stones again as a special guest on their 50 & Counting Tour in 2013.

His take on Bob Dylan’s Blind Willie McTell is faithful but playful, for instance he incorporates snippets from All along the Watchtower in the middle of the song. But it is his fantastic guitar playing that is the reason I chose this as todays video. There are not many guitarists in his league. Fantastic!

Blind Willie McTell – Mick Taylor (2009):

October 27: Bob Dylan released Infidels in 1983

….I wanted to call my next album, whenever I made it, Surviving In A Ruthless World. I wanted to call it that. Before we even went into the studio, “The next album I do I’m gonna call Surviving in a Ruthless World”. But something was holding me back from it, because for some reason… somebody pointed out to me that the last bunch of albums that I made all started with the letter S. And I’d say, “Is that right?” There must be a story or something. I didn’t want to do another one beginning with S just f for superstitious reasons. I didn’t want to get bogged down in the letter S whatever the letter S stands for. And this Infidels came out, just came into my head one day, I guess. This was after we had that album done that it just came in my head that this is the right title for this album. I mean, I don’t know any more about it than anybody else really. I did it. I did the album, and I call it that, but what it means is for other people to interpret, you know, if it means something to them. Infidels is a word that’s in the dictionary and whoever it applies to… to everybody on the album, every character. Maybe it’s all about infidels.
~Bob Dylan (to Kurt Loder in March 1984)

Bob Dylan – Jokerman (official video):

 

Continue reading “October 27: Bob Dylan released Infidels in 1983”

October 6: Watch Bob Dylan Performing a Mind-Blowing Blind Willie McTell in London, England 2000

Seen the arrow on the doorpost
Saying, “This land is condemned
All the way from New Orleans
To Jerusalem”
I traveled through East Texas
Where many martyrs fell
And I know no one can sing the blues
Like Blind Willie McTell

A FANTASTIC version.

Wembley Arena
London, England
6 October 2000

Continue reading “October 6: Watch Bob Dylan Performing a Mind-Blowing Blind Willie McTell in London, England 2000”

Bob Dylan: 5 Brilliant live performances from the year 2000

We’re playing over here with a lot of pride, it’s a big honor to play in this country, Great Britain. When I grew up, they used to tell me about the Battle of Britain, RAF, Winston Churchill, all that stuff. Now, we all know that Britain stood alone and without any allies; and that always meant a lot to me and everybody that I grew up With.
-Bob Dylan (Onstage, Wembley Arena, London, 5th October 2000)

Never Ending Tour 2000

Start date March 10, 2000
End date November 19, 2000
Legs 5
No. of shows 75 in North America
37 in Europe
112 in Total

The year 2000 is regarded by many bobcats to be among the best N.E.T. years.

The year kicked-off with 2 great shows @ Anaheim, California on March 10. The early show featured 2 live debuts; Tell Me That It Isn’t True and Things Have Changed.

Sun Theatre
Anaheim, California
10 March 2000
Early show

  • Bob Dylan (vocal & guitar)
  • Charlie Sexton (guitar)
  • Larry Campbell (guitar, mandolin, pedal steel guitar & electric slide guitar)
  • Tony Garnier (bass)
  • David Kemper (drums & percussion)

Tell Me That It Isn’t True

I have heard rumors all over town
They say that you’re planning to put me down
All I would like you to do
Is tell me that it isn’t true



Continue reading “Bob Dylan: 5 Brilliant live performances from the year 2000”