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"The times, they are a changing"

Posted by ESC on April 09, 2001

In Reply to: "The Times, they are a changing" posted by Dawn Jaeger on April 09, 2001

: Our yearbook wants to use this quote and know it came from a musical lyric, but no one seems to know what song and who sang it.


During the 1960s, the lyrics of rock music reflected the energy and rebellious mood of many young people. Bob Dylan (b. 1941), though more well-known as a folk singer, released the following song in 1964, and (it) has been called an "anthem for the protest movement."

Come gather round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a'changin'

Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
And don't speak too soon
For the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who
That it's namin'
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a'changin'

Come senators, congressmen
please heed the call
Don't stand in the doorway
Don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside
And it is ragin'
It'll soon shake your windows
And rattle your wall
For the times they are a'changin'

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road
Is rapidly agin'
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a'changin'

The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin'
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a'changin'

Source: Bob Dylan, Lyrics, 1962-1985 (New York: Knopf, 1992), p. 91