The Byrds

The Bells of Rhymney

Composed by Idris Davies / Pete Seeger

Song Review by

“The Bells of Rhymney” is a folk traditional, seemingly performed by every folk performer of the 1950s and 1960s. It proved to be irresistible to The Byrds, who, at the outset of their career, wanted to prove to their folk roots to their new audience. Although there have been several fine version of the song, The Byrds’ is not one of them, and the song appears hopelessly suited to the folk-rock style of the group. The song does contain some beautiful harmonies from the group, although this is by no means an isolated occurrence. It’s easy to understand why McGuinn turned to such material, but it’s a song rather than other aspects of the performance that doesn’t seem to fit.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Mr. Tambourine Man 1965 Friday Music
The Byrds' Greatest Hits 1967 Sony Music Distribution
X2: Mr. Tambourine Man/Sweetheart of the Rodeo 1975 Legacy 3:34
Folk [Friedman] 1994
Various Artists
Friedman Fairgfax 3:30
Definitive Collection 1995 Columbia 3:33
Ultimate Byrds 1998 Legacy / Columbia/Legacy 3:31
The Very Best of the Byrds 2002 MSI Music Distribution 3:31
No Image 2002 Timeless 3:31
The Essential Byrds 2003 Columbia / Columbia/Legacy 3:32
Very Best of the Byrds [2006] 2006 Pair
There Is a Season 2006 Legacy / Columbia/Legacy / Sony BMG 3:33
Original Album Classics [2008] 2008 Columbia 3:34
The Complete Columbia Albums Collection 2011 Columbia / Legacy / Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment 3:34
Original Album Classics 2013 Legacy 3:34
In the Studio [Bootleg]
No Image Sony Music Distribution 3:33
Turn Turn Turn: Musical Documentary Blueline / IMV / Laser Media
blue highlight denotes editor's pick