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Bob Dylan: White House Revisited for Presidential Medal of Freedom

Barack Obama, Bob Dylan AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

Bob Dylan found himself knocking on the White House's door once again today.

Calling the revered singer-songwriter one of his individual heroes, President Barack Obama awarded Dylan the Presidential Medal of Freedom, one of 13 he bestowed on luminaries including Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison, astronaut John Glenn and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

Obama called the crowd in the East Room "a testament to how cool this group is. Everybody wanted to check 'em out."

Dylan, 71, knows the feeling.

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President Bill Clinton presented the 11-time Grammy winner (and Oscar winner, member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Pulitzer Prize Special Citation recipient, etc.) with a Kennedy Center Honor in the East Room in 1997, saying, "He probably had more impact on people of my generation than any other creative artist."

This could have been his third time in the same room, but Dylan missed out on accepting the 2009 National Medal of Arts from Obama in person.

The president said at today's ceremony he remembered his world "opening up" when he listened to Dylan in college, "because he captured something about this country that was so vital."

"There is not a bigger giant in the history of American music," he said.

Far more unfazed by the big moment was Dylan himself—the famously taciturn rock legend kept his sunglasses on, even when Obama fastened the medal around his neck, and wore a serious expression throughout.

So apparently the times they aren't a-changing that much.

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