When introducing Bob Dylan to the Rock'n'Roll hall of fame Bruce Springsteen made this remark about Like a Rolling Stone, elected the best rock song of all time:
"The first time I heard Bob Dylan, I was in the car with my mother listening to WMCA, and on came that snare shot that sounded like somebody had kicked open the door to your mind""
The snare shot was an unintentional consequence of Al Kooper -normally a guitarist- sitting in front of the electric organ, somehow intimidated by the skills of the Blues Guitar Genius Mike Bloomfield. He played the organ timidly, lagging behind not to miss a tone. The musical director wanted to take Kooper off the organ, but Dylan liked his style and told him to turn the organ volume on.
No one was able to dind out, who the song was about after all these years. Some say its about Edie Sedgwick, some about Joan Baez, and some even say Dylan himself... I found this great article about the song on the web, which analytically explores the lyrics, and the music.
The song is so important in Dylan's career that books have been written about it, and great Martin Scorsese chose to close his documentary No Direction Home with a live performance of this song, where Dylan is accused by the Manchester crowd of being the Judas of the folk music movement. It is a testimony to the quality of his song, the audience boos an artist, and the artist replies by telling his band to play it out loud, to irritate the audience. And the audience stays. Who can be so brave? Well maybe Boyd Rice, who uses high voltage lights and high frequency sounds to irritate his audience, but he is a psycho anyway...