Almanac Music: The Byrds – ‘Mr Tambourine Man’




One of my all-time favourite bands is The Byrds.


I was fortunate to see a reduced version of The Byrds perform in Melbourne, 1978(?) featuring Roger McGuinn, Gene Clark and Chris Hillman, plus a drummer. I don’t recall a lot about the concert except that played all the hits but were only on stage for about an hour.


Roger McGuinn I saw perform his one show at Byron Bay probably twenty odd years ago. He was fantastic, took the crowd through the history of his influences but played little Byrds stuff though he did tease the audience while setting up by playing the lead in riff to ‘Mr Tambourine Man’ which sent everyone into a frenzy.


Chris Hillman I saw with Herb Pederson at Port Fairy FF a few years back and he was sensational.


David Crosby I have seen two or three times in Melbourne and Byron Bay.


The Byrds were truly a great sounding collective, McGuinn’s Rickenbacker guitar sound, the magnificent harmonies and the fabulous songs they performed certainly made the one great bands of all time, and a great favourite of mine.


Check out the article below and the clips.

June 26, ’65: Byrds Soar to #1 With ‘Mr. Tambourine Man’


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About Colin Ritchie

Retired teacher who enjoys following the Bombers, listening to music especially Bob Dylan, reading, and swimming.


  1. Thanks for this, Col.

    I greatly admire The Byrds. Their influence on popular music is profound. Their first is one the great debut albums in popular music. And what a cavalcade of stars: McGuinn, Clark, Hillmann, Crosby, Parsons, White, Battin….
    You can hear them in such bands as REM.
    And “Eight Miles High” – what a track! Arguably the earliest psychedelic track

  2. Colin Ritchie says

    ‘Eight Miles High’ has been one of my favourites for a long time. A classic! They certainly led the way in so many ways. I don’t think we’d be seeing alt country rock and Americana if it wasn’t for the Byrds.

  3. roger lowrey says

    Nicely played Col.

    Gotta love a Rickenbacker guitar!


  4. “Younger Than Yesterday” was a fave of mine. The one featuring Hugh Masekela.

    Reckon the Lovin’ Spoonful nearly beat them to the punch with the country influence though (see “Butchie’s Tune” on the Daydream LP.

    You’ve probably seen it but there’s a cracking version of “Eight Miles High” on YouTube from 1970 performed right near the end of the Fillmore East’s tenure as a concert venue and it’s at least eight miles from what the original version sounded like!

  5. Even though I was born in the early 1980s, I’ve been a fan of The Byrds for a long while. My favourite album and song of theirs is Turn! Turn! Turn!
    The covers of Mr Tambourine Man and Turn! Turn! Turn! are far better than the originals, in my opinion.
    Another one of their best songs, albeit underrated, is Have you seen her face.

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