November 15, 2006

Who loves ya, Bruce?

In honor of a photography exhibit that just opened last weekend at the Snap Gallery in Birmingham (Born To Run: The Unseen Photographs, by Eric Meola, who photographed the Born To Run album cover), the Telegraph (UK) asks various musicians why they love Bruce and a bit about their favorite Springsteen lyric.

Here are a few excerpts that I related to in some way:

Jeremy Vine, Radio 2 presenter
“Thunder Road and Born to Run are the best songs in rock and roll. They’re cinematographic – like a movie and music in tandem. They’ll still be playing those songs in a thousand years’ time. In fact, I bet they’re playing them on other planets right now.”

Favourite lyric – from ‘Hungry Heart’ (1980)
Got a wife and kids in Baltimore, Jack
I went out for a ride and I never went back
Like a river that don’t know where it’s flowing
I took a wrong turn and I just kept going

Billy Bragg, singer/songwriter
“I saw him at Meadowlands in New Jersey, which is a huge sports arena, and he made it seem like a little local bar. “

Favourite lyric – from ‘Racing in The Street’ (1978)
Tonight my baby and me, we’re gonna drive to the sea
and wash these sins from our hands

Badly Drawn Boy, singer/songwriter
“The way I discovered Springsteen was pretty special: it felt like serendipity. It was Christmas and I was 14, just flicking TV channels. Suddenly I saw him on The Old Grey Whistle Test – footage of him playing Thunder Road live at Madison Square Garden in 1979. Just hearing the piano and harmonica made me think, ‘Wow, what’s that song?’ The next day I bought the album, and then the rest of them in chronological order. I spent the next four years listening to nothing but Springsteen.

It was Springsteen who started me thinking about what I wanted to do with my life. I didn’t know I had music in me.”

Favourite lyric – from ‘Thunder Road’ (1975)
Show a little faith, there’s magic in the night
You ain’t a beauty but, hey, you’re alright
Oh, and that’s alright with me

Thunder Road (live from Madison Square Garden, 1979) – Bruce Springsteen

VIEW: Virtually tour the exhibit here, minus the cool art gallery ambience.

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  • When I was 11, I asked my mom for Born in the USA. She was like “That guy? Do you know he is from here?”
    The cassette went in on the car ride home and a new fan was born…
    Side note: At the end of the video for “Glory days” the young boy asked his dad…”How did you do?”
    Bruce replies..”Nettles got me in the bottom of the 9th”
    (more or less)
    Graig Nettles was my idol at the time.

    SINEDDIE — November 15, 2006 @ 5:15 pm

  • I, too, loved (and still love) that line from “Hungry Heart,” and this one, too:

    Everybody needs a place to rest
    Everybody wants to have a home
    Don’t make no difference what nobody says
    Ain’t nobody likes to be alone

    Great stuff. Thanks a lot.

    jabartlett — November 15, 2006 @ 8:37 pm

  • Two favourite bruce lyrics:

    Now on the street tonight the lights grow dim
    The walls of my room are closing in
    There’s a war outside still raging
    you say it ain’t ours anymore to win
    I want to sleep beneath peaceful skies in my lover’s bed
    with a wide open country in my eyes
    and these romantic dreams in my head

    Also the opening line about having learned more from a three minute record than we ever learned in school is so true for so many people – there are times when he speaks for people so powerfully it leaves me breathless and has done since I was 17 and in Streets of Fire heard some call my name…..

    Print the legend …..Bruuuuuce!(or something like that!

    russell — November 16, 2006 @ 2:13 am

  • russell, i don’t know if you are a pearl jam fan, but have you heard the solo acoustic cover of that that eddie vedder does? his voice is so pure on those lines, it’s one of my favorite covers of it ever. lemme know if you want me to email it to you.

    heather — November 16, 2006 @ 9:34 am

  • Heather

    That would be brilliant and really helpful as I was only thinking today that I needed another version to use with a class studying Cold Mountain!


    russell — November 16, 2006 @ 11:26 am

  • russell, you’re not leaving your email address. ;)

    heather — November 16, 2006 @ 12:16 pm

  • Thanks! The links to your Springsteen Covers Part 1 are all still live. Everyone should go visit. Not so for Part 2. Did you repost?

    Dan — November 16, 2006 @ 12:22 pm

  • drat that frattle rat;sorry.


    russell — November 16, 2006 @ 12:33 pm

  • Heather

    Have now sent an email to your gmail account if my address didn’t appear on the last post.


    Thanks again!

    russell — November 16, 2006 @ 12:42 pm

  • I can try and re-up the links to the Springsteen part 2 post (links for both are in the sidebar under “Fuel Favorites”) -

    Here is the link to that Vedder cover. Gets me EVERY TIME. Listening to it now:
    No Surrender

    heather — November 16, 2006 @ 1:10 pm

  • I paged through this very book at work today. I almost bought it…but I know it’ll sit on a shelf gathering dust, so I just can’t justify the expense! ANd I picked this song (Thunder Road) for the great album opener Contrast Podcast. Cool!

    Natsthename — November 16, 2006 @ 1:10 pm

  • I love this one:

    “We’re going out where the sand’s turning to gold
    So put on your stocking’s baby,
    ‘Cuz the night’s gettin’ cold.”
    (Atlantic City)

    It so beautifully sums up desperation and despair.

    I did a post a while back on my favorite Bruce lyrics. Here is the link:

    Pete — November 16, 2006 @ 7:53 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

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