Ranking 4 Bob Dylan Penned Songs That Went No. 1

Bob Dylan is one of the world’s most prolific songwriters. Since he emerged in the 1960s, Dylan quickly established himself as a wordsmith unlike any other.

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Though Dylan hasn’t amassed as many No. 1 hits as one might expect from a career as illustrious as his, his words have had a resounding impact on the culture at large, so much so that several artists have covered his songs and sent them to the top of the charts. Below, we rank the handful of Dylan’s songs that reached No. 1 on the charts over the past six decades.

1. “Blowin’ in the Wind”

“Blowin’ in the Wind” was the second single off Dylan’s 1963 sophomore album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Not long after Dylan released it, folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary got their hands on it, recording a cover for their album, In the Wind. Their version made it to No. 2 on the Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. Dylan’s original recording of this revered civil rights anthem was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for its historical significance in 1994.

2. “Like a Rolling Stone”

“Like a Rolling Stone” was Dylan’s first career hit upon its release in 1965 and has long been regarded as one of his most important songs. Penned at a turning point in his career, the song reignited his inspiration as a musician. “Rolling Stone” reached No. 1 on the now-defunct Cash Box Top 100.

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3. “Mr. Tambourine Man”

Just call him “Mr. Tambourine Man.” In 1965, Dylan recorded “Mr. Tambourine Man” for his legacy-building album, Bringing It All Back Home. Though Dylan’s version is highly regarded, rock band The Byrds took it to the top of the charts. Released as The Byrds’ debut single in April 1965, their version of ‘Tambourine” is credited for spearheading the fusion of folk, rock and pop, and topped the Billboard Hot 100.

4. “Murder Most Foul”

More than 60 years into his career, Dylan proved that he still isn’t afraid to approach tough subject matters with “Murder Most Foul.” The lead single and final track on his 2020 album, Rough and Rowdy Ways, “Murder Most Foul” finds Dylan reflecting on the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy nearly 60 years later. The 17-minute song marked a historic moment for Dylan, as it was his first to hit No. 1 on any Billboard chart with him as the sole singer when it reached the top of the Rock Digital Song Sales chart.

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