Great Job, Internet!: 50 years after Highway 61 Revisited, the internet is still trying to identify Mr. Jones

It’s been 50 years since Bob Dylan stunned the world with the release of his seminal album Highway 61 Revisited. But for all the discussion about its impact as a watershed moment in pop music, and the decades-long parsing of every word in every second of the record’s nine tracks, one mystery has hung in the air more than the rest. Who the hell is the Mr. Jones character on the acerbic side-one closer, “Ballad Of A Thin Man”?

For those unfamiliar with the song, it’s a piano-based, almost jaunty, pretty fierce track. It’s narrated from a second-person viewpoint that follows around an unknowing figure named Mr. Jones as he encounters a varying degree of odd characters and strange situations such as a sword swallower, a “one-eyed midget,” and some weird fellow that Dylan calls “the geek.” Ostensibly, it’s a commentary on the older generation …

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