Traveling Wilburys - Dirty World [Album Version]Details

"Dirty World started when Dylan jokingly suggested 'let's do one like Prince' and began to sing 'love your sexy body' (in a drawl that Harrison imitates well), and 'we just pounced on it. Okay!'"
Robin Denselow (November 5 1988 - The Guardian)

"And the second one, which is this one called Dirty World-- I mean, literally, it was just, y'know... Because Bob's just very funny. I mean, a lot of people take him seriously and I and if you know Dylan and his songs, he's such a joker, really. And he just sat down and we said, 'Okay, what we gonna do?' And Bob said, 'Let's do one like Prince!' [laughs] And he just started banging away, 'Love your sexy body. Ooh, baby.' And it just turned, you know, like into that tune. [It sounds nothing like Prince, really.] It sounds nothing like him. But that track, I mean, I love that track. It's just so funny, really. [...] I had a camera on that take, when we were singing that. And I-- You know, it's just a static shot through the window of us around the vocal mike. And [as] Jeff was saying, we decided to do this thing about 'he loves your-- he loves your--' And then we wrote lists of... I mean, even that was funny. I mean, I don't know how other people write songs, but that bit... I mean, I just picked up a bunch of magazines and gave everybody a magazine. And Roy Orbison had Vogue magazine or something like that. I had some copies of Auto Sport which I think I gave to Bob Dylan. And then we just started reading out things like 'five speed gear box' and stuff like that. And just wrote down a big list of things. And then we reduced it down to about twelve ones that sounded interesting. We just wrote this random list and had it on the microphone. And then we just did the take. And whoever sang first sang the first one. And then we just sang 'round the group until we'd done 'em all. [...] And like the drummer on Rattled, he's playing on the refrigerator with his sticks. You know, it had to be a bit rough, but that was the fun back then."
George Harrison (February 10, 1990 - Classic Albums radio interview by Roger Scott)

"We had a list. Every time it came 'round to Roy Orbison, he always got the 'Trembling Wilbury.' And it was just the funniest thing. [Roy's] got the big, operatic [sings] 'Trembling Wilbury.' And we always collapsed every time. And no matter how we rearranged it, he always ended up with 'Trembling Wilbury' on the end. "
Jeff Lynne (February 10, 1990 - Classic Albums radio interview by Roger Scott)

"We decided to do this thing about 'he loves your-- he loves your--' And then we wrote lists of... I mean, even that was funny. I mean, I don't know how other people write songs, but that bit... I mean, I just picked up a bunch of magazines and gave everybody a magazine. And then we just started reading out things like 'five speed gear box' and stuff like that. And just wrote down a big list of things. And then we reduced it down to about twelve ones that sounded interesting. We just wrote this random list and had it on the microphone. And then we just did the take. And whoever sang first sang the first one. And then we just sang 'round the group until we'd done 'em all."
George Harrison (circa 1990 - The Traveling Wilburys Revisited BBC Radio 2 programme (broadcast May 26, 2007))

"And every time it came 'round to Roy Orbison, he always got the 'Trembling Wilbury.' And it was just the funniest thing. [Roy's] got the big, operatic [sings] 'Trembling Wilbury.' And we always collapsed every time. And no matter how we rearranged it, he always ended up with 'Trembling Wilbury' on the end. "
Jeff Lynne (circa 1990 - The Traveling Wilburys Revisited BBC Radio 2 programme (broadcast May 26, 2007))

"The second song they recorded was Dirty World, which was based on an idea by Bob Dylan and his 'Let's do one like Prince' remark. George: 'We decided to do this thing about 'He loves your... he loves you...' and then we wrote a list of things. I just picked up a bunch of magazines and gave everybody one, like Roy Orbison had a Vogue magazine, and I had some copies of Motor Sport magazine which I gave to Bob Dylan and then we all started reading out little things like 'five speed gear box' and stuff like that and just wrote down a big list of things and then we reduced it down to about twelve and that sounded interesting. We just wrote this random list and had it on the microphone and then we just did the take. Whoever sang first, sang the first one and then we just sang around until we had done them all.' [Jeff Lynne added,] 'And every time it came 'round to Roy Orbison, he always got the 'Trembling Wilbury!' And it was just the funniest thing! Roy-- the big voice, the big operatic 'Trembling Wilbury'. We just collapsed every time. And no matter how we rearranged it, he always end up with 'Trembling Wilbury on the end!' (Jeff)"
Patrik Guttenbacher, Marc Haines, & Alexander von Petersdorff (1996 Unexpected Messages)

"Early (7?) to Mid-May 1988: The Traveling Wilburys, augmented by Jim Keltner on drums reassemble at Dave Stewart's Los Angeles studio to record the remaining songs for the Wilburys's [sic] Volume One in just 10 days. Of the nine songs cut, three are sun by Dylan: Dirty World, Tweeter And The Monkey Man, and Congratulations."
Clinton Heylin (1996 - Bob Dylan: A Life In Stolen Moments: Day By Day, 1941-1995)

"Dylan's publishing grabbed this track, the hilarious Dirty World, the second song recorded for the LP. Dylan's concept was to 'do one like Prince' as a semi-tribute to the Purple One. However, it must have been in lyrical reference only, as the music bears little resemblance to anything The Artist Formerly Known As The Artist Formerly Known As Prince has ever released!"
Chip Madinger and Mark Easter (October 2000 - Eight Arms To Hold You - The Solo Beatles Compendium)

"Most of the songs [on Volume One] were lightweight fare, though Bob's playful wit was particularly evident on Dirty World."
Howard Sounes (April 2001 - Down The Highway: The Life Of Bob Dylan)

"The first song they recorded at the bona fide Traveling Wilburys Volume One sessions was Dirty World, a Dylanesque pastiche in the tradition of Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat and Rita Mac. According to Harrison, Dylan announced he wanted to 'do one like Prince... [and then] he just started banging away: Love your sexy body...' "
Clinton Heylin (2001 - Bob Dylan: Behind The Shades Revisited)

"Dirty World offered a surprisingly serviceable variation on the standard rock'n'roll automotive sexual metaphor, the tangle-haired bard indulging in saucy flattery such as 'You don't need no wax job/ You're smooth enough for me' before the rest of the band chipped in their cryptic commendations."[Dirty World is] a track from The Traveling Wilburys: Volume 1 [sic] with Bob Dylan taking over lead vocals. Apart from the Wilburys themselves, other musicians included Jim Keltner on drums, Ray Cooper on percussion and Jim Horn on horns."
Bill Harry (2003 - The George Harrison Encyclopedia)

"
Andy Gill (June 19, 2007 - The Independent)

"But much more fun is Bob Dylan's Dirty World, a raunchy love song of sorts to a woman's pickup truck."
Philip J. Reed (June 19, 2007 - noisetosignal.org)

"Dirty World has Bob Dylan perform one of the best vocal performances of his career."
Brendan Keane (June 28, 2007 - Wexford Echo)

"Each member in turn gets a shot on lead vocals [including] Bob Dylan on the tongue-in-cheek double meaning Dirty World..."
Mick Lynch (2007 - Remember The Eighties website)

"Dirty World came about when Bob jokingly suggested that they should do something like Prince, and spontaneously began to sing ‘love your sexy body,’ although each member came up with ideas to fill in the closing lyric lines of ‘He loves your...’ "
John Van der Kiste (August 2015 - Jeff Lynne: Electric Light Orchestra - Before and After)

"Dylan sings lead on such gems as Dirty World (which always reminds me of the Newbeats’ 1964 hit Bread and Butter) and Congratulations."
Jeff Burger (July 15, 2016 - The Morton Report)

"Dirty World, a mischievous love song, features some great call-and-response vocals and typically classy saxophone work from Jim Horn, whose playing was so widely admired that he had played on albums with artists as diverse as Elvis Presley, Carpenters, Frank Sinatra and Dizzy Gillespie."
Martin Chilton (October 17, 2018 - uDiscoverMusic.com website)

"The sessions for the first Wilburys album also gave Keltner the rare opportunity to hang out with Dylan -- whom he had toured with throughout his Born Again period -- in a more relaxed atmosphere. It was a vibe that would provide the levity of such Dylan-led numbers as Dirty World, Congratulations and Tweeter and the Monkey Man in ways you didn't experience on his proper albums."
Ron Hart (October 18, 2018 - Billboard)

"As Harrison might have recalled from his alter ego project 21 years earlier, the mask of a fake band encouraged creativity and humor. How else could Dylan, during a streak of commercially unsuccessful and critically panned mid-’80s albums, have written Dirty World, whose very funny couplets belie its narrator’s melange of jealousy, hurt, lust, and misogynistic contempt..."
Trevor J. Levin (October 28, 2018 - The Harvard Crimson)


  • Running Time: 3:29
  • Record Date: May 7 to 16, 1988 (original recordings) and Summer 1988 (final mixing)
  • Record Location: Dave Stewart Studios, Los Angeles, USA (original recordings) & Friar Park Studios, Henley-On-Thames, Oxfordshire, UK (George Harrison's home studio) (final mixing)
  • Written By: Traveling Wilburys (Special Rider Music indicates that Bob Dylan is the primary songwriter)
  • Produced By: Jeff Lynne & George Harrison
  • Engineered By: Richard Dodd, Phil MacDonald, Don Smith and Bill Bottrell
  • Performed By: Bob "Lucky" Dylan (lead vocals, acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Jeff "Otis" Lynne (guitars, bass, backing vocals), George "Nelson" Harrison (guitars, backing vocals), Tom "Charlie T." Petty (acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Roy "Lefty" Orbison (acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Jim Keltner (drums), Ray Cooper (percussion),Jim Horn (saxophone)

  • Released On:
    • Volume One LP album (1988 October 18 — USA — Wilbury Records 25796-1)
    • Volume One CD album (1988 October 18 — USA — Wilbury Records 25796-2)
    • Volume One LP album (1988 October 24 — UK — Wilbury Records WX 224)
    • Volume One CD album (1988 October 24 — UK — Wilbury Records 925796-2)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection CD/DVD album (2007 June 11 — UK — Rhino/Wilbury Records 8122799824)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Deluxe CD/DVD album (2007 June 11 — UK — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 167868)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Deluxe Digital album (2007 June 11 — UK — Rhino/Wilbury Records ?)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection CD/DVD album (2007 June 12 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 167804)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Deluxe CD/DVD album (2007 June 12 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 167868)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Deluxe Digital album (2007 June 12 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records ?)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Second Deluxe CD/DVD album (2007 November 20 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 167868)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Second Deluxe CD/DVD album (2007 December 3 — UK — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 167868)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection LP album (2007 December 4 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records RHI 224316)
    • Vol 1 CD album (2008 June 2 — UK — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 ?)
    • Vol 1 CD album (2008 June 3 — USA — Rhino/Wilbury Records R2 255036)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection LP album (2016 June 3 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle CRE-39517-01)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection CD/DVD album (2016 June 3 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle CRE-39515)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Third Deluxe CD/DVD album (2016 June 3 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle CRE-39516-00)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Deluxe Digital album (2016 June 3 — UK — Concord Bicycle ??)
    • The Traveling Wilburys Collection Digital album (2016 June 3 — UK — Concord Bicycle ?)
    • Vol. 1 Digital album (2016 June 3 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle ???)
    • Vol. 1 LP album (2016 October 4 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle ?)
    • Vol. 1 CD album (2016 October 14 — Worldwide — Concord Bicycle ???)
    • Volume One picture disc LP album (2018 November 2 — USA — Craft Recordings CR00040)
    • Volume One orange vinyl LP album (2020 October 9 — UK/USA — Wilbury Records CRE00213)

  • Cover Versions:
    • Strumming To The Wilbury's on their A Tribute To The Traveling Wilbury's album (04/2006)
    • Trembling Wilburys on their MySpace page (2010)