Diamonds And Rust (5:04)

Cover of Greatest Hits

From Greatest Hits and 47 other releases

“Diamonds & Rust” is a 1975 song written and performed by Joan Baez. In the song, Baez recounts an out-of-the-blue phone call from an old lover, which sends her a decade back in time to a seedy hotel in Greenwich Village. She recalls giving him a pair of cuff links, and summarizes that memories bring “diamonds and rust” (time both turns dirty charcoal into beautiful diamonds and shiny metal into ugly rust).

The song, which was a top-forty hit for Baez on the U.S. singles chart, is regarded by a number of critics, as well as by Baez fans, as one of her best compositions. It served as the title song on Baez’s gold-selling Diamonds & Rust album in 1975.

Claims that the song describes Baez’s relationship with Bob Dylan ten years before are undermined by Baez in her memoir, And a Voice to Sing With, where she recounts how she told Dylan that the song was actually about her husband David Harris.


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Albums featuring this track (48)

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  • wtfpoly


    3 Jan 6:28pm Reply
  • LiverpoolLiz

    It is an extraordinarily good song; honest, well-written, well-constructed, great chord sequence and guitar riff. Amazing that I now know Washington Square so well and stay in the hotel - no longer crummy but a wonderful family-run business

    17 May 2014 Reply
  • fandermusik

    I.m saddened by her voice ....

    10 May 2014 Reply
  • andrewirving

    love this :')

    1 Feb 2014 Reply
  • VallinSFAS

    Back in early 1975 my "local" (60 miles away) FM station played this--and 'Blood On The Tracks'--constantly. I got to know it very well despite the fact that I had no idea what it was about. Imagine my astonishment slightly more than a decade later watching a Judas Priest concert on MTV, and they did this one!

    3 Jan 2014 Reply
  • murkymedicine

    The unpretentious realness and honesty combined with the astounding purity of her voice makes this one of the best songs of all time. That she felt the need to qualify 'we both could have died then and there' with 'speaking strictly for me' breaks my heart every time. What a beautiful, beautiful lady.

    1 Dec 2013 Reply
  • dcuk5

    Such an amazing voice!

    12 Aug 2013 Reply
  • technozenexp

    great very real song

    24 Jun 2013 Reply
  • blacksnapper

    this one i'm hearing is a duet. judy collins, maybe?

    18 Jun 2013 Reply
  • Velvet_Rouge

    Siempre me va a gustar esta canción.

    29 May 2013 Reply
  • davidbowiegirl

    Great song

    26 May 2013 Reply
  • SayNo2NWO

    Great song with a mystical quality.

    7 Apr 2013 Reply
  • BigChoupique

    Diamonds And Rust, Wow... That's a blast from the past. I remember this girl, I think the first one I ever really loved..., reading poetry under an oak tree down along the river... We got home very late; her mom was very pissed lol. If you're out there, hope you've had a good life....

    23 Mar 2013 Reply
  • misco

    I adore this song so much because you can actually hear the truth in it. "I once loved you dearly..."

    16 Mar 2013 Reply
  • Shadomega

    Sheer beauty!

    1 Mar 2013 Reply
  • dlamontagne

    Enjoyed it at 35 and love it at 63! Great Female Artist!

    21 Feb 2013 Reply
  • autsajder_

    the saddest and most beautiful song ever written ;)

    25 Dec 2012 Reply
  • Bolters

    The best in female folk singers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Joan and Judy were both tops!

    3 Dec 2012 Reply
  • pbridge1300

    Bought my first JB album in about 1972, probably Farewell Angelina, maybe David's Album. Been listening to her ever since. Thanks, Joan.

    13 Nov 2012 Reply
  • kingswayman

    queen joan awesome lady

    8 Nov 2012 Reply
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