Bob Dylan, born Robert Allen Zimmerman, is one of the 20th century’s greatest songwriters, celebrated for his profound impact on popular music and American culture.
Dylan’s fame escalated in 1962 when he legally changed his name in homage to poet Dylan Thomas.
His lyrical compositions, characterized by their poetic power, wit and social commentary, have had an influential effect on writers and musicians alike.
Icons like Allen Ginsberg and Joyce Carol Oates have openly praised his transformative work. Dylan’s discography includes acclaimed albums like “Highway 61 Revisited” and “Blonde on Blonde,” and timeless songs like “Mr. Tambourine Man,” “Like a Rolling Stone,” and “Blowin’ in the Wind.”
His musical style, which spans folk rock, rock, gospel, country and jazz, has led to several accolades, including the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2016, a Pulitzer Prize Special Citation in 2008 and inductions into the Songwriters and Rock and Roll Halls of Fame.
Dylan’s lyrical work is also captured in various publications and memoirs.
I have compiled a list of the best Bob Dylan quotes for you.
Inspirational Bob Dylan Quotes
1. “If you want to keep your memories, you first have to live them.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
2. “Behind every beautiful thing, there’s some kind of pain.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
3. “Don’t criticize what you can’t understand.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
4. “When you got nothing, you got nothing to lose.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
5. “He not busy being born is busy dying.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
6. “A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
7. “Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
8. “The times they are a-changin.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
9. “No one is free, even the birds are chained to the sky.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
10. “You can’t be wise and in love at the same time.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
11. “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
12. “People seldom do what they believe in. They do what is convenient, then repent.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
13. “Life is more or less a lie, but then again, that’s exactly the way we want it to be.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
14. “I accept chaos, I’m not sure whether it accepts me.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
15. “Money doesn’t talk, it swears.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
16. “When you feel in your gut what you are and then dynamically pursue it – don’t back down and don’t give up – then you’re going to mystify a lot of folks.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
17. “The purpose of art is to stop time.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
18. “I’ll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
19. “Don’t think twice, it’s alright.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
20. “I think of a hero as someone who understands the degree of responsibility that comes with his freedom.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
21. “All I can do is be me, whoever that is.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
22. “Everything passes, Everything changes, Just do what you think you should do.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
23. “May your heart always be joyful. May your song always be sung.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
24. “May you stay Forever Young.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
25. “People disagreeing everywhere you look makes you wanna stop and read a book.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
Best Bob Dylan Quotes
26. “I was born a long way from where I belong and I am on my way home.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
27. “How many deaths will it take ’till we know that too many people have died?” ~ (Bob Dylan).
28. “We have never arrived. We are in a constant state of becoming.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
29. “Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am…” ~ (Bob Dylan).
30. “There is nothing so stable as change.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
31. “For the loser now Will be later to win.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
32. “Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
33. “Peace is the time it takes to reload your rifle.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
34. “Time is an ocean, but it ends at the shore.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
35. “If you don’t believe there’s a price for this sweet paradise, just remind me to show you the scars.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
36. “Creativity has much to do with experience, observation and imagination, and if any one of those key elements is missing, it doesn’t work.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
37. “How many roads must a man walk down, Before you call him a man? How many seas must a white dove sail, Before she sleeps in the sand? Yes, and how many times must the cannon balls fly, Before they’re forever banned?” ~ (Bob Dylan).
38. “Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
39. “God bless you all with peace, tranquility and good will.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
40. “May you always be courageous, stand upright and be strong, may you stay forever young.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
41. “The line it is drawn The curse it is cast The slow one now Will later be fast As the present now Will later be past The new order is Rapidly fadin’. And the first one now Will later be last For the times they are a-changin’.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
42. “Music attracts the angels in the universe.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
43. “An artist has got to be careful never really to arrive at a place where he thinks he’s AT somewhere. You always have to realize that you’re constantly in a state of becoming. And, as long as you can stay in that realm you’ll sort of be alright.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
44. “Chaos is a friend of mine.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
Top Bob Dylan Quotes
45. “I change during the course of a day. I wake and I’m one person, and when I go to sleep I know for certain I’m somebody else.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
46. “Don’t follow leaders.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
47. “Yesterday’s just a memory, tomorrow is never what it’s supposed to be.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
48. “To live outside the law, you must be honest.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
49. “All this talk about equality. The only thing people really have in common is that they are all going to die.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
50. “May you grow up to be righteous, may you grow up to be true. May you always know the truth and see the lights surrounding you. May you always be courageous, stand upright and be strong. May you stay forever young.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
51. “I hate myself for loving you and the weakness that it showed. You were just a painted face on a trip down to suicide road.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
52. “The naked truth is still taboo.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
53. “Ain’t no use jiving, ain’t no use joking, everything is broken.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
54. “There’s only one day at a time here, then it’s tonight and then tomorrow will be today again.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
55. “The future for me is already a thing of the past – You were my first love and you will be my last.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
56. “Gonna change my way of thinking, make myself a different set of rules. Gonna put my good foot forward and stop being influenced by fools.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
57. “It’s like my whole life never happened, When I see you, it’s as if I never had a thought. I know this dream, it might be crazy, But it’s the only one I’ve got.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
58. “All the truth in the world adds up to one big lie.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
59. “Your heart is like the ocean, mysterious and dark.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
60. “Mona Lisa must have had the highway blues; you can tell by the way she smiles.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
61. “Doesn’t expecting the unexpected make the unexpected expected?” ~ (Bob Dylan).
62. “Your old road is rapidly aging. Please get out of the new one If you can’t lend your hand, For the times they are a-changin’.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
Famous Bob Dylan Quotes
63. “A mistake is to commit a misunderstanding.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
64. “What looks large from a distance, close up ain’t never that big.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
65. “Experience teaches us that silence terrifies people the most.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
66. “There is a house in New Orleans they call the Rising Sun, and it’s been the ruin of many a poor boy and God I know I’m one.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
67. “People don’t live or die, people just float.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
68. “Never make it perfect.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
69. “The hollow horn plays wasted words, proves to warn that he not busy being born is busy dying.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
70. “The walls of pride are high and wide, can’t see over to the other side.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
71. “People have a hard time accepting anything that overwhelms them.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
72. “Whenever anybody does something in a big way, it’s always rejected at home and accepted someplace else.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
Short Bob Dylan Quotes
73. “How does it feel, how does it feel to be without a home, like a complete unknown, like a rolling stone.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
74. “It’s not dark yet But it’s getting there.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
75. “Whatever colors you have in your mind, I’ll show them to you and you’ll see them shine.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
76. “This land is your land and this land is my land, sure, but the world is run by those that never listen to music anyway.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
77. “Well, I sing by night, wander by day. I’m on the road and it looks like I’m here to stay.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
78. “Well, you always know who you are. I just don’t know who I’m gonna become.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
79. “Done laid around, done stayed around This old town too long And it seems like I’ve got to travel on.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
80. “I was so much older then; I’m younger than that now. From the back pages.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
81. “Couldn’t help but make me feel ashamed to live in a land where justice is a game.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
82. “God, I’m glad I’m not me.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
83. “You can always come back, but you can’t come back all the way.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
84. “Don’t get up gentlemen. I’m only passing through!” ~ (Bob Dylan).
85. “Everything that I’m saying You can say it just as good.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
86. “Draft beer, not people.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
Inspiring Bob Dylan Quotes
87. “I gaze into the doorway of temptation’s angry flame And every time I pass that way I always hear my name.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
88. “Loneliness, tenderness, high society, notoriety, you fight for the throne and you travel alone.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
89. “Let me ask you one question: Is your money that good Will it buy you forgiveness: Do you think that it could I think you will find: When your death takes its toll: All the money you made Will never buy back your soul.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
90. “All I’ve got is a red guitar, three chords and the truth.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
91. “The tree of life is growing where the spirit never dies, and the bright light of salvation shines in dark and empty skies.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
92. “Let us not talk falsely now, the hour is getting late.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
93. “There’s eyes behind the mirrors in empty places.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
94. “Everything in New Orleans is a good idea.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
95. “I’ll always thank the Lord when my working day is through, I get my sweet reward to be alone with you.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
96. “I like spiritual songs. They struck me as truthful and serious. They brought me down to earth and they lifted me up all in the same moment.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
97. “Inside the museum infinity goes up on trial. Voices echo, ‘This is what salvation must be like after a while.’ But Mona Lisa must have had the highway blues; you can tell by the way she smiles.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
98. “Come you masters of war You that build all the guns You that build the death planes You that build the big bombs You that hide behind walls You that hide behind desks I just want you to know I can see through your masks.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
99. “Mama, put my guns in the ground, I can’t shoot them anymore. That long black cloud is coming down.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
100. “She knows there’s no success like failure, and that failure’s no success at all.” ~ (Bob Dylan).
101. “Sometimes it’s not enough to know what things mean, sometimes you have to know what things don’t mean.” ~ (Bob Dylan).