Bob Dylan always had a special place in his heart for The Rolling Stones. Having seen their meteoric rise to prominence alongside his own, the two artists share a special bond.
Given their supreme impact on contemporary music, comparisons and debates around Dylan and the Rolling Stones have rolled on for decades. However, despite having worked up a healthy chart competition over the decades, both have remained complimentary of their work.
“The Rolling Stones are truly the greatest rock and roll band in the world and always will be,” Dylan once famously said of his contemporaries.
“The last too,” he added. “Everything that came after them, metal, rap, punk, new wave, pop-rock, you name it… you can trace it all back to the Rolling Stones. They were the first and the last and no one’s ever done it better.”
The feeling was very much equal, Stones guitarist Keith Richards once said of Dylan: “I’d work with Bob any[where]. I’d work with Bob in hell or heaven. I love him.”
Now, as Dylan prepares to release his eagerly anticipated new album, the musician has been in reflective mood with a series of new releases. In ‘I Contain Multitudes’, Dylan’s new and expansive song, the musician name checks The Stones while revisiting some of his contemporaries and historical figures as he sings: “I’m just like Anne Frank, like Indiana Jones. And them British bad boys, The Rolling Stones.”
Now, in a new interview with The New York Times in promotion of his upcoming record, Dylan was asked to name any songs by The Stones he wishes he had written himself: “Oh, I don’t know, maybe ‘Angie’, he said.
Adding: “’Ventilator Blues’ and what else, let me see. Oh yeah, ‘Wild Horses’.”
The 3 Rolling Stones songs Bob Dylan wishes he had written:
- ‘Wild Horses’
- ‘Ventilator Blues’
Elsewhere in the conversation, Dylan paid tribute to the late Little Richard who he said “lit a match under me.”
Dylan continued: “Tuned me into things I never would have known on my own. Little Richard was a great gospel singer. But I think he was looked at as an outsider or an interloper in the gospel world. They didn’t accept him there. And of course the rock ’n’ roll world wanted to keep him singing ‘Good Golly, Miss Molly.’
“So his gospel music wasn’t accepted in either world. I think the same thing happened to Sister Rosetta Tharpe. I can’t imagine either of them being bothered too much about it. Both are what we used to call people of high character.”
Read the full Dylan interview with New York Times here.