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Here’s why you almost never see paparazzi photos of Bob Dylan

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Isabel Infantes/PA Images via Getty Images

While Bob Dylan‘s tours are Never Ending, catching a glimpse of the famed rocker offstage is something that rarely happens. You almost never see Dylan, for example, making a Starbucks run, leaving a restaurant or taking a smoke break. So how does he avoid getting photographed, when everyone in the world has a phone? It’s because, as his former guitarist explains, “he’s slippery.”

Billy Burnette, a guitarist, songwriter and solo artist who’s played with Fleetwood Mac and John Fogerty, was Dylan’s touring guitarist in 2003. Speaking to Rolling Stone, Burnette explains that Bob does go out, but he flies under the radar. During the tour, Burnette explains, “He went out and ran every day. I’d see him in his sweats in the hotel, but he’s slippery.”

“[T]hey lost him one day [in an airport],” Burnette adds. “They couldn’t find him anywhere. I’m in this little gift shop and I turn around, and there he is. He goes, ‘Hi Billy.’ I was like, ‘How did you get in here?’ He moves around. It’s a weird thing.”

When Rolling Stone points out that Dylan is sometimes seen wearing a hoodie with the hood up, Burnette explains, “When he wears the hood, you’re not supposed to talk to him. I didn’t know that until one day we were in line to get on a plane at the airport.”

“I tapped him on the shoulder,” he continues. “The drummer said, ‘No, no. He don’t talk to anyone when he’s got the hood on.’ I was like, ‘OK. I’m glad you told me.'”

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