Songs covered by Bob Dylan
Dylan has also covered hundreds of songs. When he first started his professional career he performed traditional Folk and Blues standards as well as the songs of Woody Guthrie and blues musicians he admired.
Ten years later, in 1970, he recorded a number of songs he liked that were composed by other artists he admired. Some of these "tributes" (as you could call them) were issued on 'Self Portrait' (and "Dylan" in 1973). These albums were not much appreciated at the time by fans expecting all original Dylan songs. More than forty years later more songs from these sessions were released on "Another Self Portrait" as part of the continuing Dylan official Bootleg series.
During the first Rolling Thunder Tour, in the fall of 1975, Dylan started to add traditional and contemporary covers to his set lists again. And this continued as the Never Ending Tour has evolved. Sometimes the covers would enter the set lists for lengthy periods (an example "Duncan and Brady" played more than 80 times in three years). And sometimes a cover would only be played for a short period ("Farewell to the Gold" for example which has only been played once).
And in the Nineties there were two albums of traditional folk songs and covers. First "Good As I Been To You" and then "World Gone Wrong". These albums were also solo and acoustic - his first such for many years.
With the albums "Shadows in The Night" and Fallen Angels" Dylan again paid homage to the Great American Songbook with heart felt renditions of the songs he loves.
The songs he didn't write
In this part of our website you will find some of the songs Dylan covered himself. Wew will limit ourselves to the ones that were released on his official albums. Where possible we'll give you a soundbyte of the original (or oldest version we've found).
If you are interested in more then please try to get a copy of "The Songs He Didn't Write", an excellent book by Derek Barker. Encyclopedic and exhaustive, this guide to the more than 500 songs Bob Dylan has covered, in concert or on record, details the history of each song and offers an explanation of how he came to perform them. His masterful interpretations range from the more obvious blues, country, folk, and gospel recordings to contemporary writers such as Warren Zevon and John Hiatt. In addition to the listing of these covered songs, this compendium also includes a lengthy section detailing all of the remaining tracks that Dylan has written for others, but which remain unrecorded by the man himself.