Bob Dylan turns 70 May 24, and to mark the milestone Rolling Stone has put together “The 70 Greatest Dylan Songs.” Twelve of the songs feature commentaries by rock stars.
Ranked No. 1 is “Like a Rolling Stone” (1965), which Bono called “the birth of an iconoclast that will give the rock era its great voice and vandal.”
“Mr. Tambourine Man” (No. 8 ) was popularized by The Byrds. “Bob did not envision this song the way we did it,” wrote former Bryds vocalist David Crosby. “When he came to the studio where we we were rehearsing and heard us do ‘Mr. Tambourine Man,’ he was stoked.”
I’ve never been a big Dylan fan, but I liked a
lot of his songs, including No. 24 “Lay, Lady, Lay,” which came out in 1969 when I was a sophomore in high school. Lenny Kravitz summed it up well in Rolling Stone. “It’s a simple, beautiful love song, and I love the whole feel of it.”
The only Dylan album I own is his 2009 “Christmas in the Heart.” As Entertainer writer Cory Frye aptly put it, Dylan sounded like “wet cigarettes” on that one, but he gave it a good try. Cory, by the way, will have a story about about Dylan in the May 20-27 Entertainer.
So here’s a question: What’s your favorite Dylan song?