The Forgotten Gospel Song

The Forgotten Gospel Song? "I Ain't Gonna Go to Hell for Anybody", which was written sometime in 1980 and never formally released.

This jaunty gospel, hell-fire spittin' tune has a page on Bob Dylan's website, but no lyrics are listed.


Perhaps Bob has felt that he's embarrassed that he once espoused such a dogmatic religious claims, or maybe he now feels he was too hard on himself and left room for only guilt, not mercy. In this song, Bob also claims he can "write and steal as well as anybody", so it's possible that his lawyers advised the lyrics to this tune be taken down, given Dylan's accusations of plagiarism over the years. In any event, these are all possibilities as to why the lyrics are not provided on Bob's website.

The song features an introspective Dylan, reviewing his sins and acknowledging his failures with full vulnerability, proclaiming that he's after integrity before the easy approval of others and his own murkier instincts. His singing, as with much of what he did during the gospel era, is expressive, and the band sounds lit by the fire of revival. You can listen to this fantastic forgotten gospel song below:



Lyrics: "I Ain't Gonna go to Hell for Anybody"

I can manipulate people as well as anybody
Force 'em and burn 'em, twist 'em and turn 'em
I can make believe I'm in love with almost anybody
Hold 'em and control 'em, squeeze 'em and tease 'em
All that satisfies the fleshy needs
I've been down that road, I know what it needs.

But I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
Not today, not tonight, not tomorrow, no never, no way!

I can persuade people as well as anybody
I got the vision but it caused division
I can twist the truth as well as anybody
I know how to do it, I've been all the way through it
But it don't suit my purpose and it ain't my goal
To gain the whole world, but give up my soul.

But I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
Not for father, not for mother, not for sister, not for 
father, no way!

I can twist the truth around as well as anybody
Wine 'em and dine 'em, fool 'em and rule 'em
I can rob and steal from people as well as anybody
I know how to do it
But it don't suit my purpose and it ain't my goal
To gain the whole world but give up my soul.

But I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
Not for father, not for mother, not for sister, not for 
father, no way!

Smoke arises for ever, on a one-way ticket to burn
A place reserved for the devil
And for all those that done evil
A place of darkness and shame, you can never return. 

I can influence people as well as anybody
I can cause division, can cause division
I can mislead people as well as anybody
Burn 'em and roll 'em, rob 'em and hold 'em
Won't get my story in tricks or cards
I can see through man's delusions, i can see through 
his facades.

But I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
Not today, not tonight, not tomorrow, no never, no way!

I can write and steal from people as well as anybody
Know all the devices, paid a lot of prices
I can influence people as well as anybody
Go right up to 'em, i know how to do 'em
Don't need to depend on tricks or on cards
I can see through man's delusions, I can see through 
his facades

But I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
I ain't gonna go to hell for anybody
Not today, not tonight, not tomorrow, no never, no way!

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