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13 minutes ago, larf said:

He walked away that particular day.  Who knows what happened after. 

Oh you’re right.  We don’t know for sure. 

Just going by that little laugh and look on his face at the end of the vid.  To me he looks amused by the prospect which perhaps turns into a fantasy, but not something he acted on. 

Just my interpretation of the story... 

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4 hours ago, Early North Jersey said:

A little early in the game for me still Eileen ... But i don't think i'm going overboard calling this my favorite "solo"album. But favorite in a completely different way than i usually enjoy my Bruce .... It makes me sad .... But there is an empathy there for all of us long time fans as we and him all get older.

While there is certainly nothing on this album that will replace Open All Night, Long Time Comin' and Johnny 99 for me this is  much more relatable for me than an album with serial killers all over it.

I feel the same right now. And Goddess knows I love me some Nebraska.

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45 minutes ago, rosiejaneymary said:

Plus his family was dirt poor while he was young; and he himself was on food stamps as a young adult. 

It took him a long time to support himself, longer to be ‘comfortable,’ and longer still to make the big bucks.  

I’m doubting he’s forgotten what it’s like to struggle. 

I’ve never understood the whole problem with him being very wealthy anyway.  He had drive and a vision and works freaking hard at his chosen profession.  Would people rather he was still just playing in house bands in AP?  

Sheesh.  

While sometimes his songs are based on true events (world or personal), or his observations, thoughts, feelings, things he might be going through... many of the stories he tells in and of themselves are by and large, as you said by his own admission, fictional.  

Like it or not, I’m not sure what’s not ‘believable’ about this album.  The themes of the songs certainly are.  

 

Those critics would prefer Bruce would forget all about his past and become smug and blind to the suffering in the world. Or at least stop singing about it.

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3 hours ago, Junglelander said:

I originally thought he was one of the two young people because the says the “desk man says”. 

By that logic, he definitely doesn’t own or run the place. Maybe he lived there after he fucked his relationship up. But it never alludes to something going wrong just that when he returned (I’m assuming years later) it was all boarded up. I really wish Brice had written it a little clearer

I think that first verse is him recalling what the desk man said to him and his girl the first time they checked in. He definitely doesn't own the Motel, but has been there enough times to have fond memories of the place - even if it's just a regular unromantic motel with a rusting chain link fence. He even had a regular parking spot.

It could have any number of interpretations. I like the possible callback to Thunder Road Mary.

But it could also be what Rizla suggested - two young sweethearts stealing time away from their parents at first. It becomes a special place for them, so they end up stealing time away from kids and bills, too, every once in a while, by returning to the Moonlight Motel over the years.

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6 hours ago, Paolo's Circus Story said:

What was the one I said on the other thread? Something about it being a sequel to "The Promise"?

Everyone has their own interpretations, but I've never once thought The Promise was about a woman/love affair (is that what you're thinking, Paolo?)

I mentioned a few days ago that Moonlight Motel, in my mind, is about a young man and an older woman who have an affair. Her whispered secret is that she's married and pregnant (by her husband or the young man??). Then they part and carry on with their lives. He gets married but never forgets her. He goes back to reminisce when he hears she's died. 

Sorry, I've just woken up so this may not make complete sense! I do need to pore over the words again too. Fabulous, fabulous song, whatever the meaning.

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Waking up to three pages on Moonlight Motel is a nice surprise!

On another thread I tried to make the case for the lover being Mary from The River! However, Rosie (our Rosie, not the song!) was having none of it, so I am settling for TR's Mary.

I think they had to meet at the Moonlight Motel because, as young lovers, it was somewhere they could go for privacy. I have friends who lived 100 odd miles apart when they first got together and they used to meet at a motel - I must send them this song!

I think she has died and he is mourning her, but I love reading all the different interpretations.

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6 hours ago, westcoastgirl said:

It is very confusing.  I'm stuck on the ringing bell across the valley floor.  

The death knell. After the other things mentioned - that's always looming.

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I was listening to this on the way to work this morning. A couple of observations.

Does anyone pick up on the subtle message of "Children be careful how you play"; Its not sung as an observation but rather imbued with a wisdom which feels as though it is guided towards young lovers (children) and how they should be careful how the interact with one another because these connections can have life long consequences, good and bad.

 

Also, this brings me to tears every time; 'your whispered secret I promised I'd never tell'

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10 hours ago, Eileen said:

It's better to have loved - he can't say the 'and lost' bit.

Oh dear … it fits in so well.

Pass the hankies.

That line is one of my favourites. Absolutely beautiful.

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7 hours ago, gaityr said:

I think that first verse is him recalling what the desk man said to him and his girl the first time they checked in. He definitely doesn't own the Motel, but has been there enough times to have fond memories of the place - even if it's just a regular unromantic motel with a rusting chain link fence. He even had a regular parking spot.

It could have any number of interpretations. I like the possible callback to Thunder Road Mary.

But it could also be what Rizla suggested - two young sweethearts stealing time away from their parents at first. It becomes a special place for them, so they end up stealing time away from kids and bills, too, every once in a while, by returning to the Moonlight Motel over the years.

Oooh yes, I hadn't thought of that. 

5 hours ago, Ann Jones said:

On another thread I tried to make the case for the lover being Mary from The River!

I don't think it is that Mary, because it sounds like their marriage went sour.  But I think (because of the kids coming along so quickly) this one started in the same way, with a shotgun marriage (not literally).

2 hours ago, The_Magic Rat said:

Does anyone pick up on the subtle message of "Children be careful how you play"; Its not sung as an observation but rather imbued with a wisdom which feels as though it is guided towards young lovers (children) and how they should be careful how the interact with one another because these connections can have life long consequences, good and bad.

And that idea could tie in with an unplanned pregnancy too.

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40 minutes ago, Rizla said:

 

I don't think it is that Mary, because it sounds like their marriage went sour.  

 

I know I am mixing up my fact and fiction, but River 'Mary' is still happily married (as far as I know!)

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Is the male protagonist of MM the only one we should really feel sorry for from the whole album?

The rest of the lonely, regretful wanderers seem fated by their own actions or selfishness. The guy in MM has maybe lost his love to death. 

The Hitch Hiker cops a pass, The Wayfarer less so. The guy in Western Stars is just broken down.

Most of the rest seem to have lied, left or let down their partners. 

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Kudos to Lori Lieberman, Roberta Flack, and the Fugees -  Bruce is killing me softly with this song.
 

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16 minutes ago, Ann Jones said:

I know I am mixing up my fact and fiction, but River 'Mary' is still happily married (as far as I know!)

But in the song she acts like she don't care though, and the river is dry.  The dream didn't come true.

13 minutes ago, Captain Chaos said:

 The guy in Western Stars is just broken down.

I disagree.  He's still got work, and he enjoys his leisure time.  And although he never made it big time, he's still glad to be alive

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26 minutes ago, Rizla said:

 

He's still got work, and he enjoys his leisure time.  And although he never made it big time, he's still glad to be alive

And he has a badass El Camino.

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29 minutes ago, Rizla said:

But in the song she acts like she don't care though, and the river is dry.  The dream didn't come true.

I always took that to mean she was acting like she didn’t care about her once planned, but now has to change, future.  

In high school you’re thinking about college or some other kind of training or a job or maybe moving to a new place.  

All that had to be scrapped.  That’s the dream I always thought that didn’t come true.  Their ‘future’ dreams. 

In real life, yes, they’re still happily married (according to Bruce) and made a point to tell us they still go to the rodeo. Apparently (again, according to Bruce...unless he was kidding.  I never investigated!) there’s at least one in Western NJ... hey...wait a minute...maybe that’s what this album is REALLY about :lol:.  

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1 hour ago, Rizla said:

But in the song she acts like she don't care though, and the river is dry.  The dream didn't come true.

I disagree.  He's still got work, and he enjoys his leisure time.  And although he never made it big time, he's still glad to be alive

Maybe I’m being a touch harsh. He still strikes me as a man resigned to accept his lot rather than rejoice in it. 

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1 hour ago, Captain Chaos said:

Is the male protagonist of MM the only one we should really feel sorry for from the whole album?

The rest of the lonely, regretful wanderers seem fated by their own actions or selfishness. The guy in MM has maybe lost his love to death. 

The Hitch Hiker cops a pass, The Wayfarer less so. The guy in Western Stars is just broken down.

Most of the rest seem to have lied, left or let down their partners. 

I think it's evident and pretty much all over this album. These men can't change. Not any more. I'm not sure they want too, either. One of the themes here is acceptance of you own fuck-ups.

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3 minutes ago, Silvia said:

I think it's evident and pretty much all over this album. These men can't change. Not any more. I'm not sure they want too, either. One of the themes here is acceptance of you own fuck-ups.

You can accept your fuck-ups and still change.  I actually think you can’t really change unless and until you do accept them.  

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5 minutes ago, Silvia said:

I think it's evident and pretty much all over this album. These men can't change. Not any more. I'm not sure they want too, either. One of the themes here is acceptance of you own fuck-ups.

I think one of the themes is a realisation they’ve fucked up. Most of them are begging for another chance. If they get it I suspect they fuck up royally all over again. 

I think the guy in Stones is interesting. I don’t think his partner has left him. They stay together with him knowing they are broken because of his infidelity.

Sometimes staying together is sadder than not doing so.

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1 hour ago, Jerseyfornia said:

And he has a badass El Camino.

Photo?

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13 hours ago, westcoastgirl said:

It is very confusing.  I'm stuck on the ringing bell across the valley floor.  

"Well then it's bills and kids and kids and bills and the ringing of the bell."

 It's waking up in the morning to an alarm clock.

Think of the 1st line of Night.

Across the valley floor is a new sentence.

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2 hours ago, Ann Jones said:

I know I am mixing up my fact and fiction, but River 'Mary' is still happily married (as far as I know!)

Bruce talked about his sister and brother in law in the Broadway show.  They are still together.  His brother in law was a professional bull rider and they still attend the rodeo..in New Jersey.   I point that for those who keep wondering why a New Jersey guy is writing about cowboys.  The River Mary probably owns a cowboy hat.  

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6 minutes ago, westcoastgirl said:

Bruce talked about his sister and brother in law in the Broadway show.  They are still together.  His brother in law was a professional bull rider and they still attend the rodeo..in New Jersey.   I point that for those who keep wondering why a New Jersey guy is writing about cowboys.  The River Mary probably owns a cowboy hat.  

Yeah, I said  something similar!  He refers to his BIL as a ‘cowboy.’   

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2 hours ago, Captain Chaos said:

Is the male protagonist of MM the only one we should really feel sorry for from the whole album?

The rest of the lonely, regretful wanderers seem fated by their own actions or selfishness. The guy in MM has maybe lost his love to death. 

The Hitch Hiker cops a pass, The Wayfarer less so. The guy in Western Stars is just broken down.

Most of the rest seem to have lied, left or let down their partners. 

everybody is deserving of empathy 

that's the beauty of Springsteen

he doesn't judge

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