This was written and originally recorded by Bob Dylan in 1967, but it was the Jimi Hendrix cover that made the song famous. Many other artists have covered it, including Eric Clapton, Neil Young, U2, Dave Matthews Band and The Grateful Dead. Dylan was so impressed with Jimi's version that Dylan for years played it the way that Jimi had recorded it.
Hendrix had been working on and off with the members of the band Traffic as he recorded Electric Ladyland. Traffic guitarist Dave Mason caught Hendrix at a party and the two discussed Bob Dylan's newest album, John Wesley Harding, containing "All Along The Watchtower." Hendrix, long fascinated with Dylan, decided to cover the song on the album. On the resulting track, Mason plays rhythm on a 12-string acoustic guitar.
There must be some kind of way outta here Said the joker to the thief There's too much confusion I can't get no relief
Business men, they drink my wine Plowman dig my earth None were level on the mind Nobody up at his word Hey, hey
No reason to get excited The thief he kindly spoke There are many here among us Who feel that life is but a joke But, uh, but you and I, we've been through that And this is not our fate So let us stop talkin' falsely now The hour's getting late, hey
All along the watchtower Princes kept the view While all the women came and went Barefoot servants, too Outside in the cold distance A wildcat did growl Two riders were approaching And the wind began to howl
Music video by The Jimi Hendrix Experience performing All Along The Watchtower. (C) 2009 Experience Hendrix L.L.C., under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment"