Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter, artist and writer. He has been influential in popular music and culture for more than five decades. Much of his most celebrated work dates from the 1960s when his songs chronicled social unrest, although Dylan repudiated suggestions from journalists that he was a spokesman for his generation.
Nevertheless, early songs such as "Blowin' in the Wind" and "The Times They Are a-Changin'" became anthems for the American civil rights and anti-war movements. After he left his initial base in the American folk music revival, his six-minute single "Like a Rolling Stone" altered the range of popular music in 1965. His mid-1960s recordings, backed by rock musicians, reached the top end of the United States music charts while also attracting denunciation and criticism from others in the folk movement.
Bob Dylan's lyrics have incorporated various political, social, philosophical, and literary influences. They defied existing pop music conventions and appealed to the burgeoning counterculture. Initially inspired by the performances of Little Richard and the songwriting of Woody Guthrie, Robert Johnson, and Hank Williams, Dylan has amplified and personalized musical genres. His recording career, spanning more than 50 years, has explored the traditions in American song—from folk, blues, and country to gospel, rock and roll, and rockabilly to English, Scottish, and Irish folk music, embracing even jazz and the Great American Songbook. Dylan performs with guitar, keyboards, and harmonica.
Backed by a changing lineup of musicians, Bob Dylan has toured steadily since the late 1980s on what has been dubbed the Never Ending Tour. His accomplishments as a recording artist and performer have been central to his career, but songwriting is considered his greatest contribution.
Browse our unique collection of Bob Dylan photos and prints below
Early set of contact sheet photos by Don Hunstein taken of Bob Dylan in his New York apartment on West 4th Street in 1963.
Bob Dylan looks out of the window of the Roxy Hearts Diner in Portland, Oregon whilst on the second leg of his Gospel Tour in January, 1980
Bob Dylan relaxing and having a pint during the recordings for his BBC concert at BBC Studios in June 1965
In the studio in Santa Monica, California in 1980, Bob Dylan is captured whilst leaning on his guitar case.
Bob Dylan during his recording sessions for 'Highway 61 Revisited' at Columbia Studios in June 1965
At Columbia Studios, New York 1963 Bob Dylan crouching with his guitar during a recording session for his second studio album 'Freewheelin''
Bob Dylan relaxing in the studio in Santa Monica in September 1980
Bob Dylan rehearsing for the recording of his BBC In Concert show at BBC Studios, Shepherds Bush in London in June 1965
"This image of Bob Dylan and bass player Tony Garnier, snatched at an open air concert in Italy, sums up a beautiful partnership."
Bob Dylan hanging out on the streets of Portland, Orgeon prior to performing there as part of his Gospel Tour in January 1980.
Bob Dylan performing live onstage at the Royal Albert Hall in London in November 2013.
Bob Dylan sitting with his girlfriend Suze Rotolo in their apartment in New York in February 1963
Contact sheet of Bob Dylan taken at the Isle of Wight Press Conference in August 1969
Bob Dylan taken in Italy during a press conference for the launch of his 1984 European Tour
Bob Dylan shot while recording his 5th studio album, Bringing It All Back Home, in Columbia Recording Studios in New York City 1965.
Limited edition print of Morgan Howell's original painting of the cover of Bob Dylan's 'Like A Rolling Stone' vinyl single
An alternative version to the cover of the Bob Dylan Free Wheelin' album, which was similar, but also in colour.
Bob Dylan recording the Freewheelin' album in Columbia Recording Studios, New York City in 1963.
Bob Dylan rehearsing to an empty house on the Carnegie Hall stage in New York city, 1963.
Bob Dylan captured with his classic stare whilst performing on The Main Stage at the Glastonbury Festival in 1998
Onstage in Montreal, Canada in April 1980 during Bob Dylan's Gospel Tour
Bob Dylan and his band at the end of the second of three shows in London at Royal Albert Hall on November 26, 2013.
Bob Dylan photographed by Ed Caraeff in Los Angeles, California in January 1974.
Bob Dylan onstage at the Ahoy, Rotterdam in the Netherlands in June 1984.
Limited edition of Morgan Howell's original painting of the cover of Bob Dylan's 'Blowin' In The Wind' vinyl single
Bob Dylan onstage at the Pavillon de Paris, Paris during his 'Street Legal' tour in July 1978
Bob Dylan performing onstage at the Salzburgarena, Salzburg, Austria in July 2012 as part of his Never Ending Tour.
Bob Dylan striking an Elvis-like pose whilst onstage at the Arena di Verona in April 2018
Bob Dylan and his band performing in 2014 at Beacon Theatre in New York.
Bob Dylan performing in the South Tyrol town of Merano, Italy in 1992.
"Oh, the streets of Rome are filled with rubble" Bob Dylan live at Terme di Caracalla, Rome 2015, one of the world's most beautiful venues
Bob Dylan captured by Paolo Brillo during his performance at Padova, Italy in June 2010
Bob Dylan performing at the Braehead Arena, Glasgow in October 2011
The Royal Albert Hall in London October 2015, Bob Dylan is onstage during one of his five sold out concerts at the venue
Bob Dylan performing onstage in Stadhalle Furth, Germany in March 1995
Bob Dylan performing at HMV Hammersmith Apollo, London on November 20, 2011 during the second of three shows.
Bob Dylan onstage at the picturesque archaeological site of Terme di Caracalla, Rome in June 2015
Bob Dylan performing at the medieval Castello Scaligero, Verona in July 1998
In December 2014, Bob Dylan onstage with his band at the Beacon Theatre in New York