Reviewing Bruce Springsteen


Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17

Thread: Reviewing Bruce Springsteen

  1. #1

    Reviewing Bruce Springsteen




    Well, I’ve done the Beatles and I’ve done the Rolling Stones so who else could I do? I thought about David Bowie and the Who and I began to realize, when in Poughkeepsie am I going to do an American Artist?

    So why not review none other than the Boss himself? Bruce Springsteen is perhaps the best known artist in the field of what is known as Americana. His legend is certainly secure even if he isn’t quite as commercially successful as eighties contemporaries like Michael Jackson and Madonna. In terms of critical acclaim though, he is considered one of the greatest artists in the history of Rock n Roll.

    This is going to be a bit of a challenge for me as, unlike The Beatles and Rolling Stones, I do not rate Bruce Springsteen among my favorite artists. That doesn’t mean I don’t like him, of course, because I do, but I don’t have the same firsthand knowledge or even know where to look for the relevant information (though I promise I certainly will find it).

    Also, I’ll be concentrating on his nineteen studio albums for the most part and only mention items otherwise that are especially important to Springsteen’s output such as Live 1975-1985 and the Streets of Philadelphia single.

    So get excited because the Boss is coming soon.


    PS- Much of the information and lyrics will come from this site: http://www.brucespringsteen.it/

    Other information about the songs can be found here: https://genius.com/


    Albums and Ratings:

    GREETINGS FROM ASBURY PARK, NJ 1/2
    THE WILD THE INNOCENT AND THE E STREET SHUFFLE
    BORN TO RUN
    DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN
    THE RIVER
    NEBRASKA
    BORN IN THE USA 1/2
    BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E-STREET BAND LIVE 1975-1985
    TUNNEL OF LOVE
    HUMAN TOUCH
    LUCKY TOWN
    THE GHOST OF TOM JOAD
    THE RISING
    DEVILS & DUST
    WE SHALL OVERCOME: THE PETE SEEGER SESSIONS
    MAGIC
    WORKING ON A DREAM
    WRECKING BALL
    HIGH HOPES
    WESTERN STARS
    Last edited by mrmustard615; Yesterday at 03:42 PM. Reason: adding link and ratings
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

  2. #2
    what about neil young.....if he's the boss what would he be ceo
    The only one who can heal you is you.




  3. #3
    Neil Young fans might think so.
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

  4. #4
    Bruce Springsteen sucks so bad, even he's depressed!

    Just kidding. He has written a few good songs, although he sang about fuelie heads on his 396 when that would be impossible since fuelie heads were made for small block Chevy's. You'd think somebody would have told him!

    I actually don't know much about him, so we'll see. Sometimes an appreciation of someone can be developed when you know their story, if that story is intriguing. He always tries to milk his songs for all they're worth when he plays live, which is annoying--not that I've ever seen him live other than in videos, where I had the ability to shut him off before I puked. Live, in person, I'm guessing that there is a lot of puking going on in the audience. Then again, from what I hear, his audience consists of overweight, middle aged women and gay men--not that there's anything wrong with that. I'm just saying.

  5. #5
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    Where the sour turns to sweet
    Posts
    760
    Now you're speaking my language! Any info or collab you need on Mama Springsteen's little boy, just shout. One of my favourite artists. Huh!

    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  6. #6
    Cool. I might need some info on some albums. I can get the lyrics but I can't find out what he meant by them. Also any history that's relevant to any given album (The Rising and 9/11 for example) I'm all ears, er eyes.
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

  7. #7
    Offline: Depressed Trollheart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    Where the sour turns to sweet
    Posts
    760
    Yep. I'm your guy. I'm not so familiar with the albums he released post-The Rising, but I know enough about them to get by. The rest, hell, I'm an encyclopedia!
    Come away, human child to the waters and the wild
    With a faery hand in hand.
    For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand. - WB Yeats "The Stolen Child"

    I drink to forget, but I never forget to drink.

    "If the real Jesus Christ were to stand up today
    He'd be gunned down cold by the CIA" - The The, "Armageddon Days Are Here (Again)" - Mind Bomb, 1989


    The most destructive force on the planet is not nukes or global warming...it is the human ego. - Ralph Rotten

  8. #8
    I know, I know, you're saying when is Musty going to post something on Springsteen? Well, the wait is almost over. The first chapter on Springsteen goes up tomorrow so get your air guitars out. We're going to have a rockin time.
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

  9. #9

    IN THE BEGINNING 1965-1972





    Note: much of my information will be derived from this site: http://www.brucespringsteen.it/

    And for the purposes of this post: http://www.castiles.net/bands.html






    Bruce Springsteen was born in 1949 in Long Branch, New Jersey. His father worked as a bus driver out of Freehold where Bruce grew up while his mother worked as a legal secretary. Springsteen’s interest in music started when he first saw Elvis Presley on Ed Sullivan and the interest would intensify with the arrival of Beatlemania in 1964. He bought his first guitar for $18.95 and joined his first band, the Rogues, shortly thereafter. From there he would be involved with several bands, first simply as a member, and then as the leader. And with that, we start with the beginnings of what would make Bruce Springsteen the Boss.



    The Castiles

    The Castiles started out as the Sierras and was led by George Theiss. Springsteen wasn’t an original member, not having joined until 1965 at the age of fifteen. He would share lead vocals with Theiss throughout his two and a half year run with the band.

    As with most high school groups of the period, this was a band that was heavily influenced by the Beatles. There really wasn’t much special to note about these young men. They paid for a recording session in May 1966 and Baby I is the earliest record where you can hear Springsteen on vinyl though Theiss is the lead singer on this track.

    In 1967, the Castiles’ drummer had to leave to band as he had been drafted . He would be killed in Vietnam later that year. Springsteen too was drafted, but he was able to feign mental instability and was listed as 4F. There was a sense he felt guilt (survivor’s guilt perhaps?) by getting out of the draft the way he did and would compensate by supporting veterans of wars during the bulk of his career while never losing his own personal liberal convictions.

    Springsteen left the Castiles in 1968 to join a new band, a band much different than the pop oriented Castiles were.

    Earth




    Springsteen was attending Ocean County college in 1968 when he met John Graham and Michael Burke. The three of them formed a heavy blues rock trio in the style of Cream and called themselves Earth. They debuted at a local coffee house that August and Springsteen would develop a local reputation as the Fastest Guitar in Asbury Park. There are no recordings of Earth either in the studio or in live performance, but they are said to have been essentially a cover band, playing songs from Cream, Jimi Hendrix, and Traffic among others. According to Ultimate Classic Rock , Earth played in an unreleased soft core porn film shot at the Fillmore East.

    Earth would last for only six months when Springsteen was recruited by a drummer named Vini “Mad Dog” Lopez. Springsteen joined the band Child in February 1969.


    Child/Steel Mill




    Vini Lopez formed Child with Springsteen, Danny Federici, and Vini Roslin in February 1969. They changed their name to Steel Mill late that year as there was a progressive band called Child that had come out by then. Like Earth, Steel Mill was a hard rock outfit. Springsteen would be the front man at vocals and guitar and it is perhaps here where his light began to outshine the others a bit. Frederici and Lopez would, in fact, follow Springsteen to the formation of the E Street band, thus the beginnings of what will become the Springsteen legend can be traced here.

    Another major figure in Springsteen’s career, perhaps the most major figure, joined the band after bass player Vini Roslin was fired. They had known Steve Van Zandt for a time by this point and it’s safe to say he fit right in. For a while it seemed he was Springsteen’s right hand man for years and has certainly made a name for himself in his own right but I’m sure that will come up later.

    Steel Mill proved to be a fairly successful live band on the club circuit and also found a following in California where they even were offered a recording contract by none other than Bill Graham. They surprisingly turned it down. Steel Mill added a lead vocalist in the summer of 1970 and they continued to play the Jersey scene mostly before Springsteen left to form his own band.




    Dr. Zoom and the Sonic Boom/The Bruce Springsteen Band



    And that band became Dr. Zoom and the Sonic Boom which lasted for exactly two shows. This was a large band that would quickly evolve into the Bruce Springsteen Band. Lopez and Van Zandt followed Springsteen into this band and new familiar names such as David Sancious and Gary Tallent would join. By now, the core of what would become the E Street band was in place. Basically this was a jam band that wouldn’t last for long in this incarnation. So Springsteen and company would make one more adjustment and then there would be…

    The E-Street Band



    The E Street band was unnamed when they first started performing in late 1972, ostensibly to record Springsteen’s first album. John Hammond had signed Springsteen to Columbia Records and he had to get a band together. So the usual characters joined him along with a new and now very familiar face in saxophonist Clarence Clemons. The pieces were now together and all they needed now was a new name. That wouldn’t come until 1974. The name came from the street where they would practice at David Sancious’ mother’s house in Belmar, New Jersey. The original lineup included Tallent, Sancious, Clemons, and Lopez and they were now Springsteen’s backup band, and very happily so. One person who was missing at this early stage was Steven Van Zandt who was touring with the band he helped found, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes. He would join for good in 1975, just in time for Springsteen’s breakthrough album.

    But first we have a couple of albums that, while they would garner positive reviews, eluded the commercial success they no doubt deserved. And yet we have some truly classic tracks on these albums. Anyway, stay tuned until next time when we dissect the debut album of Bruce Springsteen and the still unnamed E-Street band.
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

  10. #10

    GREETINGS FROM ASBURY PARK, NJ





    Released: 1973
    Producer: Mike Appel and Jim Cretecos
    Label: Columbia

    John Hammond signed Bruce Springsteen to Columbia records in the summer of 1972. In order to save money, this debut album was recorded at the out of the way 914 Sound Studios in Blauvelt, New York. It had been a gas station apparently. There were originally five tracks with the backup band and four tracks that were just Springsteen, but Columbia said the album lacked a hit single. Thus, Springsteen wrote two songs that he would record with Lopez and Clarence Clemons on sax. Neither song would chart for Springsteen but they would prove quite successful for Manfred Mann’s Earth Band three years later.

    The album opened to positive reviews and Springsteen was already being touted as something of a fresh new face. One critic even this early on would compare him to Dylan. So the album wasn’t especially successful at the time, but, of course, with Springsteen’s fame still ahead of him, this album has fared quite well and has stood the test of time.



    Best Tracks: Mary Queen of Arkansas, Spirit in the Night

    Weakest Tracks: The Angel




    Blinded By the Light: I think on this, the first track, you can sense there was something of a nonsensical poet within Springsteen. It seems nonsensical at points lyrics wise and I’m sure that’s where the Dylan comparisons begin. I never really got into this song; I actually prefer the Manfred Mann version better. This song is the only Springsteen penned record to ever hit number one on Billboard- by Manfred Mann.

    Growin Up: Another interesting set of lyrics, but this one seems to have a theme. This is obviously a song about youth. There are parts such as in Sanctious’ piano that reminds you of the Springsteen sound that would become evident on Born To Run. I like this one better than Blinded.

    Mary Queen of Arkansas: This is a hauntingly acoustic song. This is basically Springsteen on acoustic guitar and harmonica. There is a thought that this song may be about a drag queen but that’s only what I got from Wiki. I will say, this is my favorite song on the album so far. I always like Bruce best when he plays it simple and stark.

    Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?: This is basically in the typical early Springsteen style with the piano and acoustic guitar prominent. Another set of interesting lyrics. One thing for sure; Springsteen isn’t going to be your typical I Love you in June type of lyricist.

    Lost in the Flood: This may be the first song Springsteen wrote about a Vietnam War veteran. Springsteen may have already felt guilty for skipping the draft and perhaps was trying to compensate for it here by describing what it must have been like for the Jimmy the Saint character.

    The Angel: This is Springsteen’s ode to a motorcycle outlaw according to Wiki. This is a slow paced track. Again dominated by piano. It seems to lack some of the passion of the other tracks comparatively, but that’s only by this album’s standards really.

    For You: This too was covered by Manfred Mann on the Roaring Silence. Greg Kihn would cover this as well. Wiki says this is about a woman who has attempted suicide. I have to say he does know how to weave a story. Something that would be a theme for his entire career.



    Spirit in the Night: This is perhaps the first of Springsteen’s many classics. This was the other song that Manfred Mann recorded but this time, the original is the superior version. In fact I would say this is my favorite song on the album, perhaps ever. Maybe because this song was written and recorded with such haste, that there is a certain energy that is rarely matched by anyone. Clemons is especially impressive on the sax as Springsteen sings about a fun encounter with some friends like Hazy Dazy and Janey and the like. Again this may be my favorite Springsteen song ever.

    It’s Hard To Be a Saint in the City: This is the song that first got Mike Appel’s attention. He quit his job as a record producer to manage Springsteen because of this song. It weaves a tale of someone trying to go straight but who also find it difficult in the city. You have to think if Springsteen didn’t make it as a musician, he may very have found success as a poet/lyricist. The usual E-street elements circa 1973 are here and the album ends on a very strong note.


    OVERALL EFFECT: I’d love to tell you this album is absolutely perfect. Well, it’s not, but it comes damned close. I won’t say exactly where I rank this yet as this is but the first of not only all of Springsteen’s albums, but the first of two releases in 1973. I will say, then when this latest reviewing project is over, I expect to rank this album in my top five of Springsteen’s albums easily. Spirit of the Night especially impresses me and I think that will go down as one of Springsteen’s most inspired songs. Overall, this is quite a good start to what will become one of the most celebrated careers in rock history.

    MUSTY’S RATING: 1/2

    The Word has Spoken

    1973 would prove to be a pretty active year for Springsteen and band. This was, in fact, the first of two albums to be released this year and we’ll be getting to the second in the next installment. So stay tuned.
    It's here! Hidden Content

    ​List your top ten songs before December 15. The WF 100 will be posted December 31. Hidden Content




    And check out Gertie's blog on her favorite top twenty-five albums between 1955-2017 Hidden Content

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
This website uses cookies
We use cookies to store session information to facilitate remembering your login information, to allow you to save website preferences, to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners.