Singer-songwriter Bob Dylan has come to be a figure of political and social influence for his powerful lyricism regarding civil rights. His outstanding writing has also been utilized by other famous musicians.
Bob Dylan has written a range of songs for a number of famous musicians. He wrote Wanted Man for Johnny Cash, along with other songs for various artists. Being one of the most popular songwriters of his time, he has had many other artists cover his music since. These include Cher, Jimi Hendrix, My Chemical Romance, and Adele, among others.
This article will comprise some of the most famous pieces Bob Dylan has penned for other musicians.
Famous Songs Covered By Others
Bob Dylan is one of the most covered artists in history. Other musicians often put their own spin on his lyrics.
All Along The Watchtower was a song originally written by Bob Dylan, but popularized by famous musician Jimi Hendrix.
This is likely the most famous cover of a Bob Dylan song, and Hendrix went on to put it on his album Electric Ladyland.
Dylan greatly appreciated Hendrix’s cover, stating in a 1995 interview, “It overwhelmed me, really. He had such talent, he could find things inside a song and vigorously develop them.”
Irish rock band U2 also covered this song and performed it live. U2 has recorded and covered several Bob Dylan tracks that later went on to become chart toppers, such as Love Rescue Me.
Desolation Row was originally written and recorded by Bob Dylan for his album Highway 61 Revisited. My Chemical Romance later re-recorded this for the 2009 movie Watchmen.
Adele’s cover of Bob Dylan’s song Make You Feel My Love went gold in the U.S and platinum in the U.K.
She spoke of her appreciation for him in an interview with Manchester Evening News.
“The lyrics are just amazing, and summed up exactly what I’d been trying to say in my songs…It’s weird that my favorite song on my album is a cover, but I couldn’t not put it on there.”
American rock band The Byrds covered various Bob Dylan songs.
In fact, they have two compilation albums titled The Byrds Play Dylan with an expansive collection of 20 titles including Mr. Tambourine Man and Just Like a Woman.
Countless more singers, including Cher, Glen Campbell, Tracy Chapman have recreated the artist’s work.
Songs Written By Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan wrote the song Wanted Man for Johnny Cash in 1969 for his album At San Quentin.
Another song titled Jammin’ Me was released by Tom Petty with his band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and was co-written by Dylan himself.
Steel Bars, which was also co-written by Bob Dylan, was a hit title by singer Michael Bolton.
Bolton said of the collaboration, “Someone who works with Dylan called me up and said, ‘Bob Dylan would like to write with you. I was awed. I told him, ‘I don’t even know how I could write a lyric when working with you … I’m too intimidated.’”
Joan Baez released the song Love Is Just A Four Letter Word in 1968, which Bob Dylan had written the lyrics for, but never recorded and released.
Baez covered several other Bob Dylan songs, giving him a platform for his music.
The band Manfred Mann released the song Mighty Quinn in 1968, which Dylan had written and recorded, but did not release until 1970 after it gained fame for its cover, which reached the Top 10 in the UK Charts.
The site Nobody Sings Dylan like Dylan holds all archives of Bob Dylan covers, with a staggering number of over 105,000 covers.
Dylan’s impressive lyricism combined with his passion for activism provides a brilliant base from which he has created masterpieces for both himself and other musicians.