The 10 Greatest Bob Dylan Covers That Stood The Test Of Time


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Bob Dylan’s music has been an undeniable influence on popular music for over five decades. His works are revered and celebrated by fans, and his songs have been covered by countless artists across the globe. Some of these covers have become just as iconic and enduring as Dylan’s own versions.

From his iconic hits to deep cuts, Dylan’s catalog has been re-imagined in every genre, and some of those covers have even managed to outshine the originals. Here are the 10 greatest Bob Dylan covers that have stood the test of time:



“It Ain’t Me Babe” – Johnny Cash and June Carter

In 1964, country icon Johnny Cash recorded a cover of Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me Babe” with his future wife June Carter. With Cash’s grizzled baritone and Carter’s twanging lilt, they made the song entirely their own.

“All Along the Watchtower” – The Jimi Hendrix Experience

Jimi Hendrix’s cover of Dylan’s 1967 song “All Along the Watchtower” is arguably more well-known than the original. Hendrix’s version quickly became a Top 20 hit when it was released in 1968, just months after Dylan’s original.

“Gotta Serve Somebody” – Mavis Staples

Powerhouse vocalist Mavis Staples’ cover of Dylan’s 1979 gospel-inspired “Gotta Serve Somebody” is one of the most notable renditions of the song. Dozens of artists, including Willie Nelson, Natalie Cole, Etta James, and Judy Collins, have also covered the song.

“Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” – Guns N’ Roses

Guns N’ Roses’ cover of Dylan’s “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” is arguably the most famous rendition of the song. The band’s version features power chords and anthemic vocals that shrug off Dylan’s simplistic arrangement.

“Mr. Tambourine Man” – The Byrds

The Byrds’ version of Dylan’s classic tune “Mr. Tambourine Man” was released just a month after Dylan’s original in March 1965. The band’s interpretation is nearly as iconic as Dylan’s, and it helped to popularize folk-rock as a genre.

“Maggie’s Farm” – Rage Against the Machine

Rage Against the Machine’s hard-edged interpretation of Dylan’s “Maggie’s Farm” drives home the song’s defiant “I ain’t gonna work…” lyrics. The band’s version is one of the most powerful covers of any Dylan song.

“Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” – Nina Simone

Nina Simone’s haunting version of Dylan’s 1965 song “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” is one of the best covers of any Dylan song. Her rich contralto beautifully guides the tune’s narrative lyrics.

“One More Cup of Coffee” – The White Stripes

The White Stripes add a certain edginess to Dylan’s “One More Cup of Coffee,” while frontman Jack White pretty accurately mimics Dylan’s quavering vocals.

“Million Miles” – Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt’s cover of Dylan’s blues-tinged “Million Miles” perfectly matches her voice with the song’s slow-rocking arrangement. It’s a stunning interpretation of one of Dylan’s lesser-known tracks.

“Boots of Spanish Leather” – The Lumineers

The Lumineers’ stripped-down, emotionally charged cover of Dylan’s 1964 ballad “Boots of Spanish Leather” is a tear-jerking masterpiece. The band’s rendition is one of the best covers of any Dylan song, and it’s a testament to the power of his music.