"Nadine (Is It You)?" has the distinction of being the first song that Chuck Berry recorded after being released from prison, where he served 18 months in 1962-1963. It offers eloquent testimony that Berry's abilities had not diminished a whit in the interim. The form is simple: "Nadine (Is It You?)" is a four-verse rhythm song with a basic, rolling R&B arrangement that doesn't even feature a bridge. The story Berry tells in the lyrics is also simple: The narrator happens to catch a glimpse of a woman and spends the rest of the song trying to catch up with her. But actually, nothing is simple. The narrator describes the woman as "my future bride." Does that mean she is literally his fiancée, or that he is taken by the appearance of a lovely stranger? Or is he unsure that she is the woman he thinks she is, as the title, sung twice in each chorus, suggests? The song is a compendium of transportation: The narrator is getting on a bus when he sees her walking; he gets off and chases her through a crowd; she gets in a cab, and he stops a full cab, pays the customers to get out, and follows her in it; and at the end of the song, he still hasn't caught up to her. This odd narrative is heightened by Berry's unusual use of similes. "She moves around like a wayward summer breeze," he notes at one point. The taxi moves through traffic "like a mounted cavalier." When he calls to her from the crowd, he is "campaign-shoutin' like a Southern diplomat." These are remarkable images for a pop song, and both the music and use of language proved to be a profound influence on Bob Dylan. One need only listen to "Nadine (Is It You?)," released in February 1964, and then to the 1965 Dylan album Bringing It All Back Home, with its surreal story-songs, to hear the similarities. Released as a single, "Nadine (Is It You?)" hit the Top 40, becoming the first of five Berry titles to chart in 1964, and like most Berry songs, it has drawn its share of covers through the years. But it remains one of the songwriter's lesser-known gems.