All the Tired Horses

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"All The Tired Horses"
Song by Bob Dylan from the album Self Portrait
Released June 8, 1970
Genre Rock, Folk rock
Length 3:14
Label Columbia
Writer Bob Dylan
Producer Bob Johnston
Self Portrait track listing
"All The Tired Horses"
"Alberta #1"

"All the Tired Horses" is a song written by Bob Dylan, released on his 1970 double album Self Portrait. The song was featured in the 2001 film Blow.

The song is the first track on the album. It is most notable for its absence of Dylan's singing. It consists of a small choir of female voices repeating the same two lines

All the tired horses in the sun
How'm I s'posed to get any ridin' done? Hmm.

to the same melody for 3 minutes and 14 seconds, with varying instrumental accompaniment. In the key of C major, this song consists musically of the chord structure I-vi-iii-V, repeated throughout. This translates in the given key to C-Am-Em-G.

Possible Meanings[edit]

This has been taken as metaphor for simple tiredness, a psychological fatigue stemming from the wild ride of stardom and its attending distractions over his recent past years, or even a fatigue of the spirit itself, as interfering with his songwriting.

Cover Versions[edit]


  • Bob Dylan's official page
  • Don Giller and Ed Lozano. The Definitive Bob Dylan Songbook. Amsco Publications, 2003.
  • Oliver Trager. Keys to the Rain: The Definitive Bob Dylan Encyclopedia. Billboard Books, 2004.

External links[edit]