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Talk to me about "THE PROMISE", it history, and live or other versions I should be familiar with.


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9 hours ago, sleepyjoe said:

The '76-77 performances are some of my favorite in his entire career. Was super happy when those two '77 got released on Nugs, and the Albany performance from 2/7/77 is on all streaming services now as part of the "Live Series Songs Of Hope" compilation.

As for post-Reunion performances, I'm not too keen on the full band versions (though I adore the Promise album). Something about the 4/22/14 Pittsburgh performance though resonates with me, I don't know why. I wasn't even at the show, but hearing it on the Nugs release really struck a chord with me for some reason. What I do know though is that it being sandwiched between LOHAD and The Wall makes it even more heartbreaking.

I was at the Pittsburgh 4/22/14 show. I got very excited when Bruce sat down at the piano (I love it when he plays piano :)), though I was expecting For You, so I was thrilled to get The Promise instead. 

Having said that, there's something really special about the '70's performances. The aforementioned Seattle one is great, but I also like Dallas '78 (I believe). I do like the full band version also, especially the Carousel performance with David Lindley on violin.

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8 hours ago, muscum said:

Sorry, Daisey.

No problems 

It was a spelling  mistake by be ....im sure Daiay the actual Jeep (our toy at the time) was spelt  the right way 

Where did you discover the promise  ?

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5 hours ago, Daisey Jeep said:

Where did you discover the promise  ?

I think it was reading about it in the first Dave Marsh book but that Camden Market cassette boot was what turned it into the grail.

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By Jim Beviglia, NO RETREAT, NO SURRENDER, Song 32

Bruce debuted this song live right around the time he was going through an intense lawsuit with former manager Mike Appel, and, with the lines about promises being broken and “fixed games,” many assumed that the dispute was at the heart of this song. Maybe that’s why Bruce shelved it, and it finally saw the light of day on the 1999 (18) Tracks compilation with a fresh recording.

It’s interesting to note the difference between the vocals on the two rendition. Look up the early version online, and you’ll hear how desolate Bruce sounded, almost spectral. In the ’99 version, his voice is much huskier and somehow sadder. The years that passed hadn’t softened up his disappointment at all.

With just some plaintive piano behind him, Springsteen is back in the land of dreams and promises again, but this time he’s singing about what it does to you when those intangibles are shattered. The illusions are bare, and as he brings back character names from past songs and references Thunder Road, it’s clear that these shout-outs to his songwriting past are meant to evoke not nostalgia but heartbreak. These people are not fulfilling their expectations, and Thunder Road is laid bare for what it really is: “There’s something dyin’ on the highway tonight.”

In a startling verse toward the end of the song, Springsteen reveals how it all went right and still went wrong: “I won big once and I hit the coast/But somehow I paid the big cost/Inside I felt I was carryin’ the broken spirits/Of all the ones who lost.”

It’s a powerful feeling of remorse conveyed in those lines, a startling contradiction to the stereotypical carefree rock star of the 1970’s. But, then again, such empathy and insight is what helped separate the guy from the pack in the first place. Never has he exhibited those feelings in such a gorgeously sad way.

 

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40 minutes ago, el sergio said:

By Jim Beviglia, NO RETREAT, NO SURRENDER, Song 32

Bruce debuted this song live right around the time he was going through an intense lawsuit with former manager Mike Appel, and, with the lines about promises being broken and “fixed games,” many assumed that the dispute was at the heart of this song. Maybe that’s why Bruce shelved it, and it finally saw the light of day on the 1999 (18) Tracks compilation with a fresh recording.

It’s interesting to note the difference between the vocals on the two rendition. Look up the early version online, and you’ll hear how desolate Bruce sounded, almost spectral. In the ’99 version, his voice is much huskier and somehow sadder. The years that passed hadn’t softened up his disappointment at all.

With just some plaintive piano behind him, Springsteen is back in the land of dreams and promises again, but this time he’s singing about what it does to you when those intangibles are shattered. The illusions are bare, and as he brings back character names from past songs and references Thunder Road, it’s clear that these shout-outs to his songwriting past are meant to evoke not nostalgia but heartbreak. These people are not fulfilling their expectations, and Thunder Road is laid bare for what it really is: “There’s something dyin’ on the highway tonight.”

In a startling verse toward the end of the song, Springsteen reveals how it all went right and still went wrong: “I won big once and I hit the coast/But somehow I paid the big cost/Inside I felt I was carryin’ the broken spirits/Of all the ones who lost.”

It’s a powerful feeling of remorse conveyed in those lines, a startling contradiction to the stereotypical carefree rock star of the 1970’s. But, then again, such empathy and insight is what helped separate the guy from the pack in the first place. Never has he exhibited those feelings in such a gorgeously sad way.

 

This is why i limit my listening  to it

Its my 3rd favourite  song ever but it cuts way too close to the bone 

What  is it Bruce says of late ...

Had enough of heartbreak and pain
I had a little sweet spot for the rain
For the rain and skies of grey
Hello sunshine, won't you stay?

You know I always liked my walking shoes
But you can get a little too fond of the blues
You walk too far, you walk away

 

i can honestly  see why he left it off Darkness and i don't think  it had much to do with  Mike

It just has no hope, and darkness does have hope

Its not good  to wolow in misery 

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2 hours ago, el sergio said:

By Jim Beviglia, NO RETREAT, NO SURRENDER, Song 32

Bruce debuted this song live right around the time he was going through an intense lawsuit with former manager Mike Appel, and, with the lines about promises being broken and “fixed games,” many assumed that the dispute was at the heart of this song. Maybe that’s why Bruce shelved it, and it finally saw the light of day on the 1999 (18) Tracks compilation with a fresh recording.

It’s interesting to note the difference between the vocals on the two rendition. Look up the early version online, and you’ll hear how desolate Bruce sounded, almost spectral. In the ’99 version, his voice is much huskier and somehow sadder. The years that passed hadn’t softened up his disappointment at all.

With just some plaintive piano behind him, Springsteen is back in the land of dreams and promises again, but this time he’s singing about what it does to you when those intangibles are shattered. The illusions are bare, and as he brings back character names from past songs and references Thunder Road, it’s clear that these shout-outs to his songwriting past are meant to evoke not nostalgia but heartbreak. These people are not fulfilling their expectations, and Thunder Road is laid bare for what it really is: “There’s something dyin’ on the highway tonight.”

In a startling verse toward the end of the song, Springsteen reveals how it all went right and still went wrong: “I won big once and I hit the coast/But somehow I paid the big cost/Inside I felt I was carryin’ the broken spirits/Of all the ones who lost.”

It’s a powerful feeling of remorse conveyed in those lines, a startling contradiction to the stereotypical carefree rock star of the 1970’s. But, then again, such empathy and insight is what helped separate the guy from the pack in the first place. Never has he exhibited those feelings in such a gorgeously sad way.

 

I'm probably in a minority of one that thinks the 18 tracks version of The Promise is the best,when I read the thread a couple of days ago it just led me straight to listening to it,so stark & bleak.

Listening to it imagining Bruce playing it with a drink by his side made me then watch the Western Stars video with Bruce sitting at the bar,the young man thinking everything may have gone,the old man glad he's still here.

That 78 piano version just seems a little too slow to me & the changes in his voice over the years affect certain songs more than others along with the way he's learnt to present them in different ways.

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On 3/4/2021 at 1:39 PM, Jertucky said:

Thanks for posting that. 
I don’t know, it just doesn’t do anything for me. Again, lyrics are not the issue. Just kind of slow and plodding for me.

It’s a brooding, despairing, personal ballad.  What do you expect, Held Up Without a Gun tempo?

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12 minutes ago, G-Man said:

It’s a brooding, despairing, personal ballad.  What do you expect, Held Up Without a Gun tempo?

No, it’s just boring. Racing in the Street is a quieter song but not boring. Racing has some passion to it, Promise doesn’t. It’s not the lyrics, it’s the delivery I guess. 

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Like a lot of folks, I first read about The Promise in 1979 in Marsh's book. I think he referred only to the live version and called it 'a remarkable new song.'

It was a couple of years later that I actually met someone who had a bootleg collection that could curate a C90 for me. It was Dave Percival, some of you may know him. Top bloke. Still friends with Dave to this day and I still have the tape.

The studio version of The Promise on there is a still unreleased version that eventually turned up on the CD boot called, aptly, The Promise (part of a three CD Darkness outtakes set on the Scorpio label , the others being The Iceman and The Way). To this day, it is the single most brilliant thing he has ever done and I return to it often. I wanted The Promise as my user name on here but it was taken, hence the 61 tag (denoting the number of children that I have).

To me, other versions pale in comparison to that one, although the version on the The Promise DVD is pretty great.  I've said this many times before, but the 18 Tracks version is an abomination.

So, thanks to Bruce. Thanks to Dave.  And thanks to whoever leaked it from the studio all those years ago.

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12 hours ago, High As Hope said:

Listening to it imagining Bruce playing it with a drink by his side made me then watch the Western Stars video with Bruce sitting at the bar,the young man thinking everything may have gone,the old man glad he's still here.

I've thought that the guy in Somewhere North of Nashville was sleeping in the backseat of a borrowed car.

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9 hours ago, misty rain said:

I've thought that the guy in Somewhere North of Nashville was sleeping in the backseat of a borrowed car.

It's interesting how we all see the characters in his songs.

Above you said about getting excited when Bruce sat at the piano in Pittsburgh & expected For You but then were thrilled to get The Promise,2012 in Paris when he sat at the piano I thought it would be The Promise but then he totally surprised by playing Independence Day which was wonderful.

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High Noon

 

Apple arrives in the city to ”take care of” Springsteen's ownership to his work. Springsteen asks for help, but no one will give him any. In the court he tells the truth, but no one is listening to him. He is desperately fighting alone for the right to his own work. He wants it all: the right to his heroes. But this right is not recognized. It all comes down to a simple exchange. In the end he own his work, but he had to pay for it. He gets it all, but during this process in court, he has realized, that the heroes he had been fighting for, all belong to them that has let him down. For the heroes, that was born to run, that said, that the promised land lay awaiting at the end of Thunder Road, was not apt to stay and fight for his right. They wanted to run away, but no fight is won by deserting. So, now when he has taken it all, he trows it all away. The kind of star he was, he trows to the ground. Now he is leaving the city, leaving his old heroes for new ones, that will stand their ground.

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25 minutes ago, ulfhpersson said:

High Noon

 

Apple arrives in the city to ”take care of” Springsteen's ownership to his work. Springsteen asks for help, but no one will give him any. In the court he tells the truth, but no one is listening to him. He is desperately fighting alone for the right to his own work. He wants it all: the right to his heroes. But this right is not recognized. It all comes down to a simple exchange. In the end he own his work, but he had to pay for it. He gets it all, but during this process in court, he has realized, that the heroes he had been fighting for, all belong to them that has let him down. For the heroes, that was born to run, that said, that the promised land lay awaiting at the end of Thunder Road, was not apt to stay and fight for his right. They wanted to run away, but no fight is won by deserting. So, now when he has taken it all, he trows it all away. The kind of star he was, he trows to the ground. Now he is leaving the city, leaving his old heroes for new ones, that will stand their ground.

I guess Apple would take ownership of his work as much as Appel wanted to.

 

:-)

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25 minutes ago, Promise61 said:

I guess Apple would take ownership of his work as much as Appel wanted to.

 

:-)

well, i thought that the sentence well expressed, that who "his" referred to, was what was in question; but English is not my first language, so...

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1 hour ago, ulfhpersson said:

Apple arrives in the city to ”take care of” Springsteen's ownership to his work.

Mike Appel arrives in the city to make Bruce Springsteen a star.

 

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16 hours ago, ulfhpersson said:

High Noon

 

Apple arrives in the city to ”take care of” Springsteen's ownership to his work. Springsteen asks for help, but no one will give him any. In the court he tells the truth, but no one is listening to him. He is desperately fighting alone for the right to his own work. He wants it all: the right to his heroes. But this right is not recognized. It all comes down to a simple exchange. In the end he own his work, but he had to pay for it. He gets it all, but during this process in court, he has realized, that the heroes he had been fighting for, all belong to them that has let him down. For the heroes, that was born to run, that said, that the promised land lay awaiting at the end of Thunder Road, was not apt to stay and fight for his right. They wanted to run away, but no fight is won by deserting. So, now when he has taken it all, he trows it all away. The kind of star he was, he trows to the ground. Now he is leaving the city, leaving his old heroes for new ones, that will stand their ground.

Oh thats so sad

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13 hours ago, Promise61 said:

Just before lockdown I had a week in NYC. Lovely hotel, a converted office block on W55th. Turns out it was where our hero first auditioned for Mike.

Cool !

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Well it all worked out ok in the end 

 

Probably better for Bruce than Mike

But without Mike Bruce Springsteen  might not have ever become The Boss that we all know

Mike-Boss-300x480.jpg

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16 hours ago, Daisey Jeep said:

But without Mike Bruce Springsteen  might not have ever become The Boss that we all know

Not 'might', but 'would'. As in 'fact'.

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On 3/14/2021 at 2:35 PM, ulfhpersson said:

High Noon

 

Apple arrives in the city to ”take care of” Springsteen's ownership to his work. Springsteen asks for help, but no one will give him any. In the court he tells the truth, but no one is listening to him. He is desperately fighting alone for the right to his own work. He wants it all: the right to his heroes. But this right is not recognized. It all comes down to a simple exchange. In the end he own his work, but he had to pay for it. He gets it all, but during this process in court, he has realized, that the heroes he had been fighting for, all belong to them that has let him down. For the heroes, that was born to run, that said, that the promised land lay awaiting at the end of Thunder Road, was not apt to stay and fight for his right. They wanted to run away, but no fight is won by deserting. So, now when he has taken it all, he trows it all away. The kind of star he was, he trows to the ground. Now he is leaving the city, leaving his old heroes for new ones, that will stand their ground.

When I now, after I wrote the text above, read about High Noon, I find a much deeper connection to The Promise. The screenplay was written by Carl Foreman, and he, like many other, was summoned to appear before the House Un-American Activities Committee, but refused to name names, and hence was, as many others, blacklisted. Many of them had to emigrate to Europe: Orson Welles, Charlie Chaplin, Jules Dassin, Joseph Losey, and also Carl Foreman, and many more. All this was of course against the constitution, i.e. against the law, but of course there was the ones who did not stand their ground. I will not here name the names. And of course, there was a few that took the fight and without hesitation told the truth, for example Lionel Strander; Wikipedia wirites: When Stander was himself called before HUAC, he began by pledging his full support in the fight against "subversive" activities: I know of a group of fanatics who are desperately trying to undermine the Constitution of the United States by depriving artists and others of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness without due process of law ... I can tell names and cite instances and I am one of the first victims of it ... [This is] a group of ex-Fascists and America-Firsters and anti-Semites, people who hate everybody, including Negroes, minority groups, and most likely themselves ... [T]hese people are engaged in a conspiracy outside all the legal processes to undermine the very fundamental American concepts upon which our entire system of democracy exists.

Of course he was talking about HUAC itself.

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