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Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks

March 1, 2018

On this date in 1975, Bob Dylan’s raw and painful Blood on the Tracks, released six weeks earlier, became the number-one album on the chart compiled by Billboard magazine. It would remain at the top spot until March 15. Ranked number 16 on Rolling Stone magazine’s “definitive list of the 500 greatest albums of all time,” Blood on the Tracks featured songs including “Tangled Up in Blue,” “Shelter from the Storm,” “Idiot Wind,” “If You See Her, Say Hello,” and “Simple Twist of Fate.” (Scroll down to see Dylan performing “Shelter from the Storm” live in 1976.) Some critics claim that the album’s lyrics were essentially autobiographical and reflected Dylan’s struggles with his estrangement from his then-wife Sara Lownds (born Shirley Noznisky). Dylan himself has denied this. Either way, on this same date two years later, Lownds — the subject of “Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands,” among other Dylan songs — would file for divorce in California. The couple had four children.

“We had a falling-out, like lovers often will
And to think of how she left that night, it still brings me a chill
And though our separation, it pierced me to the heart
She still lives inside of me, we’ve never been apart . . .”
—Bob Dylan, “If You See Her, Say Hello”