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On Auction Block: Draft Of 'Like A Rolling Stone,' And Some Doodles


It's not all politics here in Washington. On Pennsylvania Avenue, there used to be a hotel called the Roger Smith. The top of the hotel's stationery proclaimed it was just one block from the White House. And it's under that heading that one of rock 'n roll's most important figures scribbled out the lyrics to one of his biggest songs.



Bob Dylan wrote the 1965 hit "Like a Rolling Stone" on four pages of that hotel stationery. Along with the lyrics, there are doodles: a hat, a chicken, a deer.

SIEGEL: A few years ago, Dylan either sold or gave the stationery to someone who won't reveal his identity. And now, the auction house Sotheby's has announced that next month, these pages of rock history will be offered to the highest bidder.

CORNISH: Whoever that someone is, one thing's certain: He won't be scrounging around for his next meal. The papers are expected to bring in millions.


SIEGEL: Well, how does this all feel to Dylan fans?

MEL PRUSSACK: Yeah, I think it's a shame.

SIEGEL: That's Mel Prussack of Old Bridge, N.J.

PRUSSACK: I am the curator of The Bob Dylan Shrine.

CORNISH: Prussack is a pharmacist by day.

PRUSSACK: I can't imagine why Dylan would sell this. The only thing I could think of - he wanted to help somebody out, and I would imagine he sold it for a dollar or something.

CORNISH: The draft of "Like a Rolling Stone" is expected to go for up to $2 million.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "LIKE A ROLLING STONE") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Robert Siegel
Prior to his retirement, Robert Siegel was the senior host of NPR's award-winning evening newsmagazine All Things Considered. With 40 years of experience working in radio news, Siegel hosted the country's most-listened-to, afternoon-drive-time news radio program and reported on stories and happenings all over the globe, and reported from a variety of locations across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. He signed off in his final broadcast of All Things Considered on January 5, 2018.
Audie Cornish
Over two decades of journalism, Audie Cornish has become a recognized and trusted voice on the airwaves as co-host of NPR's flagship news program, All Things Considered.
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