Does Bob Dylan play chess?


Here's a picture from the 27.09.12 Rolling Stone Interview with Bob Dylan, nary a word in the entire interview about this interesting picture of Dylan seated before an empty chessboard with Anatoly Karpov looking on in the background.  I shrank the original pic quite a bit so it would fit here, I could probably submit a larger image if anyone's interested; but if it's much larger you won't be able to see all of it at once.


from here:

It appears that Bob Dylan was also a keen chess player. In the Bob Spitz biography, there are several paragraphs describing how Dylan used to try to psyche his opponent out by talking during the game. He also was known to do the same wild, nervous leg shaking motion while playing that he does when he is singing. There is also a report that Dylan's manager paid Bobby Fischer so Dylan could play chess with him.

In the Bob Dylan art gallery online, one of the artists has done a sketch called "Only a Pawn in their Game" with Dylan playing chess, the title being taken from a song in the album "The Times They Are A-Changin' (Jan. 1964). Also, if you have the issue of MOJO with Dylan on the cover there is a beautiful picture of him playing chess.


very cool ... yea, maybe a link to the larger one?  



Monologue by Bob Dylan:

“First time I ever worked in East Orange, New Jersey.

Folks never go to East Orange, New Jersey; it’s a horrible town. I went there to play in a coffee house in East Orange, New Jersey. It was a chess playing coffee house out there. It was so bad…uh…so bad, people playing chess out there. Uh…that’s all they thought about out there was chess and chess and chess. People come up to me, you play your song, you play you a real quiet song. In the middle of the song you hear “Check”, [female laughter in background] And “Hey, that was a good move” and all kinds of stuff like that.

Hey folks it was so bad I had a little dream out there the first night I worked about this chess playing stuff. I dreamed I went to work out in East Orange, New Jersey, and, uh, about time I quit in two days I went there to ask the guy for my money. I says, “Can I have some money, I worked two days for ya?” He says, “Uh… Well OK, we don’t pay you money around here though” I says “Uh, yeah?” He says “Well” he says, uh, ”Yeah, we pay ya chess men”, I said “Uh, well give me my chess men then, I worked two days”. I sort of…didn’t really figure, I thought he was lying at first, but I took it anyway. He gave me a king and a queen for working two days. I said “Fine, that’s OK”.

So I took my king and queen and went down to a bar, nearest bar I could find. I walked in the bar and I ordered a pint. I… I got on the bar, “Bartender”, I says “Can I have a pint?” I’ll be damned if he didn’t give me a pint. He asked me for the money. I gave him my king and queen. I’ll be damned, you know he took that king and queen, threw it under the counter, and brought me out four pawns, two bishops, and a rook for change.

That’s a little story about East Orange, New Jersey.”


classic stuff rooperi :)


rooperi thanks for the input here it's




Yes he plays, a LOT. Has been playing since the early 60s. Seems he has a weakness for the whites


He's probably sketching for one of his many art book undertakings


I am bob dylan converstion over


and I'm Maybelle Carter.