Diamonds My Way
June 29th, 2018
Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you awesome songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, Taylor Goldsmith of the folk-rock supergroup The New Basement Tapes channels Bob Dylan in "Diamond Ring," a nearly forgotten song about second chances.



In the tune, the song's protagonist is heading back to St. Louis, where he's hoping to reconnect with his old flame, Alice. And this time he's willing to make a life-long commitment.

He sings, "That old organ grinder's gonna wind his box / And the knife sharpener's gonna sing / When I get back to St. Louis again / I'm gonna buy that diamond ring / Diamond ring / Diamond ring / Shine like gold / Behold that diamond ring."

"Diamond Ring" is one of more than 100 songs Dylan wrote in 1967 while recovering from a near-fatal motorcycle accident in his Big Pink home near Woodstock, N.Y. While 16 of those works went on to be included in Dylan's highly regarded 1975 album, The Basement Tapes, many of the other songs, including "Diamond Ring," remained forgotten — until recently.

With a nod from Dylan himself, producer T Bone Burnett assembled a supergroup of "musical archaeologists" — including Goldsmith, Elvis Costello, Marcus Mumford, Jim James and Rhiannon Giddens — to re-imagine many of Dylan's "lost" works.

The all-stars recorded more than 40 Dylan songs during a two-week session, according to music.avclub.com. The creative process saw members of the group swapping instrumental and vocal roles on the different album tracks.

The group eventually released two versions of Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes in November of 2014. "Diamond Ring" appears as a bonus track in the deluxe 20-song version.

Goldsmith, who is best-known as a member of the Los Angeles-based folk rock band Dawes, has collaborated with Dylan before. His band toured with the legendary singer-songwriter in 2013.

Please check out the audio track of Goldsmith and The New Basement Tapes all-stars performing "Diamond Ring." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"Diamond Ring"
Written by Bob Dylan and Taylor Goldsmith. Performed by The New Basement Tapes.

If I ever get back to St. Louis again
There's gonna be some changes made
I'm gonna find old Alice and right away where I left off
It's gonna be just as if I'd stayed

That old organ grinder's gonna wind his box
And the knife sharpener's gonna sing
When I get back to St. Louis again
I'm gonna buy that diamond ring

Diamond ring
Diamond ring
Shine like gold
Behold that diamond ring

If I ever get back to St. Louis again
Everybody's gonna smile
One of the Mack girls dragged me up to Washington
I got stuck there for a while

She gave me more misery than a man can hold
And I took her bad advice
Now I don't aim to bother anyone
I have paid that awful price

Diamond ring
Diamond ring
Shine like gold
Behold that diamond ring

If ever I get back to St. Louis again
That diamond ring is gonna shine
That old burlesque dancer is gonna bum around
And everything's gonna be fine

I'm gonna settle up my accounts with lead
And leave the rest up to the law
Then I'm gonna marry the one I love
And head out for Wichita

Diamond ring
Diamond ring
Shine like gold
Behold that diamond ring


Credit: Screen capture via universal-music.de.