100 Greatest Bob Dylan Songs

From "Just Like a Woman" to "John Wesley Harding," we count down the American icon's key masterpieces

Load Previous

33. "Idiot Wind" (1975)

The original version of this Blood on the Tracks centerpiece was a rueful acoustic ballad, but when Dylan rerecorded half of the album at the last minute in Minneapolis, the heavily rewritten "Idiot Wind" became one of his most scathing, frothing, furious songs – a rant against the woman he married and idiocy itself. "You're an idiot, babe/It's a wonder that you still know how to breathe," goes the chorus, and that's not even as harsh as it gets. Dylan makes sure he's not spared from blame: "It's a wonder we can even feed ourselves," he sings in the last line. The live version on Hard Rain – performed with its apparent target, his soon-to-be ex-wife, in the audience – is crueler and even more gloriously raging. Dylan said of the song, "I didn't feel that one was too personal, but I felt it seemed too personal. Which might be the same thing."

Back to Top