100 Greatest Bob Dylan Songs

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

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90. "The Groom's Still Waiting at the Altar" (1981)

Todd Snider: Bob Dylan finds a million different ways to do one-four-five blues, Chuck Berry-style rock & roll, my favorite kind of song. I think there's a story getting told here that I don't totally understand, but who cares? It's just a great poem. I have no idea what the groom's still waiting at the altar for, but I feel terrible for him. Dylan invented this kind of song, where each verse has some wisdom being imparted without being preachy, like, "I know God has mercy on those that are slandered and humiliated," and, "I see people who are supposed to know better than to stand around like furniture." It's perfect. I wish I had thought of it.

But people that try to copy him end up looking ridiculous. A whole generation tried; they fucking Strawberry Alarm Clocked themselves to death. I still try to copy him, and it's like trying to steal something from somebody's house and everything in the house weighs 4,000 pounds. You're like, "Shit, how am I gonna get this out of here?" And you just can't. I opened up for him a little bit in the Eighties; I got to sit onstage and watch him sing, and it was incredible. He was drinking a lot, but it didn't seem to hurt him too much. Around the Eighties, people started saying he wasn't doing good stuff. The production sort of sounds like Phil Collins and shit; it reminds me of when I had just gotten out of high school, a time that kind of hurts the heart a little, I guess. I thought those albums were monsters.

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