"All I Really Want to Do" as written by and Bob Dylan....
I ain't lookin' to compete with you
Beat or cheat or mistreat you
Simplify you, classify you
Deny, defy or crucify you
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

No, and I ain't lookin' to fight with you
Frighten you or uptighten you
Drag you down or drain you down
Chain you down or bring you down
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

I ain't lookin' to block you up
Shock or knock or lock you up
Analyze you, categorize you
Finalize you or advertise you
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

I don't want to straight-face you
Race or chase you, track or trace you
Or disgrace you or displace you
Or define you or confine you
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

I don't want to meet your kin
Make you spin or do you in
Or select you or dissect you
Or inspect you or reject you
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

I don't want to fake you out
Take or shake or forsake you out
I ain't lookin' for you to feel like me
See like me or be like me
All I really want to do
Is, baby, be friends with you

Lyrics submitted by Jack

"All I Really Want To Do" as written by Bob Dylan

Lyrics © AUDIAM, INC

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All I Really Want to Do song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentI think some people may have missed point a little, it's definitely about a girl. It's a new relationship and he's telling her his intention, and that's to just try and be her friend. A lot of times people project things on the people they are interested in and make assumptions. A woman has a certain way she would like to be seen, so you're not going to be able to see her that way from day one, so you gotta just let her reveal herself naturally, and the only thing you can do is try and be friends with her, which is all love is really about.
    brandon346on March 03, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General Commentgod i love this song... especially when he laughs at himself... "i ain't lookin' for you to feel like me, see like me or be like me." i laugh everytime... haha
    pomegranatesROCKon June 14, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about the pursuit of simple friendship, free from the complexities of love, family, politics, and judgement...maybe.
    mrjoneson January 29, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think he's looking for sex without the accompanying emotional attachments. It even has the tone of a man trying to pick up a woman in some bar. "C'mon...I just wanna be friends..."
    Good song, though.
    Comicstripperon December 15, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think most people consciously or subconsciously tries to make their lovers be like them, see like them, act like them, but Bob Dylan was the ultimate libertarian, he just wanted to be free and he wanted everybody else to be free.
    Eatcarpeton December 22, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song gives me a wierd unexplainable feeling i'm not sure if it's good or bad
    LITTLEREDWAGON4on February 24, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is from the period when he was dating Joan Baez, no? I think it's definitely about her.
    dedgrottyon April 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentand yet... i get the feeling he wants to be more than just friends :)
    myfriendbrennon May 28, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHave any of you seen Don't Look Back?
    GlassInTheStreeton June 12, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAs this song is on the surface a love song, it is more accurately a song dealing with inter-personal relationships. Like It 'Aint Me Babe and Positively 4th Street I believe it's again Dylan using the template of the love song to direct an inter-personal message at a specific target. In this case his critics.
    That's mostly due to the context of when he wrote this, though lines like categorize you or advertise you do lend to the theory's creedence. Similarly I think it's important that the song begins the album. Dylan had a habit of beginning his album with an overview of what he wanted to get out of the record (It AInt Me Babe, Like A Rolling Stone).
    What's cute in the body of the song is that the yodel bit is him obviously 'putting himself out there' and being himself. While it's just a fun little yodel as in Honey Just Allow Me More One Chance with the backdrop of the song's meaning it's more of a statement and device than just a sound.
    nigelmustaphaon December 17, 2007   Link

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