From the Bootleg Series liner notes (John Bauldie):
First published in Broadside magazine in March 1963, this is a more accomplished reworking of the subject of the earlier "Man on the Street". Once more, Dylan plundered the past for this song's melody and format, for "Only a Hobo" is an obvious adaptation of Aunt Molly Jackson's "Poor Miner's Farewell" (which is itself a restatement of several older, similar songs about, among others, dead sailors or cowboys). It also shares its tune with Woody Guthrie's "The Great Divide".
Return to Roots of Bob
Send comments to Seth Kulick