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Purpose of Some Songs


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9 minutes ago, Jertucky said:

”I need some quiet”

This is a bit off topic, but I'll chime in here. I never understood Bruce's shhhh! shhhh! at the beginning of Mary's Place. Seen it performed live twice, and did it both times. So all shhhh, to only Bruce a couple lines later saying come on, come on, come on! My wife looked at me and said why don't he make up his mind! :)

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Springsteen has written about the human condition for decades. The human condition is made up of many many ingredients. Good and Bad. Why do we do things. Why do we do great things, why do we do the worst things humanly possible. Sometimes he tries to give some answers and many times he leaves the questions open for debate. 

The purpose sometimes might simply be for people to talk about the art, thus this very topic. 

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1 hour ago, HeroOfVirtue said:

As for the "controversy" surrounding American Skin, it's only "controversial" because of a group of uncriticizables that cries out that they're the Hebrews being chased out of Egypt at every opportunity

That took me a couple take's to understand this comment! Your talking about Police Officers? 

1 hour ago, HeroOfVirtue said:

It's the least controversial song I've ever heard in my life.

I agree with you! But when most people talk about political songs, 41 Shots is always the first one mentioned! 

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33 minutes ago, Jimmy James said:

That took me a couple take's to understand this comment! Your talking about Police Officers? 

I agree with you! But when most people talk about political songs, 41 Shots is always the first one mentioned! 

Yes, police officers, but to clarify I don't mean to insult all of them...only the ones who are perpetually aggrieved!

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1 hour ago, Jimmy James said:

I think this is what I kind of was looking for! Not every tune needs a purpose. I get accused a lot of times of not getting the message a song is putting out! Or not listening to the lyric's? I listen to the lyric's, but I take those lyrics literally! I don't try to get more out of it than what is spoken.  

Yeh most of Bruce's lyrics are fairly literal.  Whether you want to form an opinion about events or characters in the song is up to you.  The lyrics have a lot of emotional power,  but there's no "hidden meaning".

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2 hours ago, Gretsch Country Gentleman said:

The lyrics have a lot of emotional power,  but there's no "hidden meaning".

Lets try Long Walk Home for this one. Political or not? 

It reads to me as someone who has been away from his hometown for awhile to come back to find things have changed! 

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6 hours ago, Jertucky said:

that I first heard it on the Live CD where he tells the crowd to be quiet. So pompous. People paid a lot of money to go to a rock and roll concert and you’re hushing them

He did that already on the European leg of The River Tour, asking people to be quiet before songs like Stolen Car, Wreck On The Highway, Point Blank, Racing In The Street, Independence Day. Also on The Rising Tour, before the Empty Sky-You're Missing duo. (And also on both solo tours, but you were talking about rock and roll concert). And @HeroOfVirtue already gave the real reason.

This all said, I am not a fan of the song and I prefer the High Hopes studio version to the Live In NYC version.

 

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4 minutes ago, Lampi said:
6 hours ago, Jertucky said:

that I first heard it on the Live CD where he tells the crowd to be quiet. So pompous. People paid a lot of money to go to a rock and roll concert and you’re hushing them

He did that already on the European leg of The River Tour, asking people to be quiet before songs like Stolen Car, Wreck On The Highway, Racing In The Street, Point Blank, Independence Day. Also on The Rising Tour, before the Empty Sky-You're Missing duo. (And also on both solo tours, but you were talking about rock and roll concert, so the Joad Tour and D & D Tour probably disqualifty in this).

Exactly, people paid a lot of money to go to a concert and some of us would like to hear the songs, so I'm all in favour of artists calling for the crowd to be quiet.

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33 minutes ago, Lampi said:

He did that already on the European leg of The River Tour, asking people to be quiet before songs like Stolen Car, Wreck On The Highway, Point Blank, Racing In The Street, Independence Day. Also on The Rising Tour, before the Empty Sky-You're Missing duo. (And also on both solo tours, but you were talking about rock and roll concert). And @HeroOfVirtue already gave the real reason.

This all said, I am not a fan of the song and I prefer the High Hopes studio version to the Live In NYC version.

 

Well, I’m not a fan of him shushing anybody that paid money to see his show so noting these other instances doesn’t really deter me from my thinking that he was wrong to do it for 41 Shots.

Who would need to be told to keep quiet during Stolen Car anyway? Unless he meant to keep the snoring down.

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29 minutes ago, Rizla said:

Exactly, people paid a lot of money to go to a concert and some of us would like to hear the songs, so I'm all in favour of artists calling for the crowd to be quiet.

Then you should pony up the $750 to see the Broadway spoken word show. You go to a rock concert, you’re not paying be directed how to react by the performer. If the performer is good enough at his/her job the crowd knows how to react to the songs.

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45 minutes ago, Jertucky said:

Who would need to be told to keep quiet during Drive All Night anyway? Unless he meant to keep the snoring down.

Now we agree!:)

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7 hours ago, Jimmy James said:

This is a bit off topic, but I'll chime in here. I never understood Bruce's shhhh! shhhh! at the beginning of Mary's Place. Seen it performed live twice, and did it both times. So all shhhh, to only Bruce a couple lines later saying come on, come on, come on! My wife looked at me and said why don't he make up his mind! :)

One word: Dynamics.

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7 hours ago, Jimmy James said:

This is a bit off topic, but I'll chime in here. I never understood Bruce's shhhh! shhhh! at the beginning of Mary's Place. Seen it performed live twice, and did it both times. So all shhhh, to only Bruce a couple lines later saying come on, come on, come on! My wife looked at me and said why don't he make up his mind! :)

Year - he does say that 

Too bad he didn't tell the disrespectful  slow clapping and whistling  Jimmy Barnes/ rage aganist the machine Auckland fans to shut the fuck up when he was talking quite poignantly latter on in the song after dedicating that song to Christhurch 

 

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Why shouldn't Bruce write about such things ?...he is the greatest chronicler of the human condition there has ever been in popular music as far as I am concerned.

Nebraska; Bruce was quoted about the song "Nebraska was about that American isolation; what happens to people when they're alienated from their friends and their community and their government and their job. Because those are the things that keep you sane, that give meaning to life in some fashion. And if they slip away, and you start to exist in some void where the basic constraints of society are a joke, then life becomes kind of a joke. And anything can happen".

Personally, I see the song as a warning, given Bruce's explanation given above. I think it's an incredibly powerful song which heralds an album which remains to this day for me one of Bruce's masterpiece records.

Paradise; A reflection on death seen from three different angles. One of the most moving and touching songs he has ever written in my view, and certainly for me the best song on The Rising. Atmospheric, Incredible lyrics, and a lovely melody.

 

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14 minutes ago, MacBruce said:

One of the most moving and touching songs he has ever written in my view, and certainly for me the best song on The Rising.

 

Wow, not sure I've ever seen anyone state that before. I have to admit it was one of the last ones to click for me but when it did, it really did. 

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22 minutes ago, HeroOfVirtue said:

Wow, not sure I've ever seen anyone state that before. I have to admit it was one of the last ones to click for me but when it did, it really did. 

Yep...always been my favourite from that album.

Although The Rising, My City of Ruins and Your Missing run it very close.

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9 hours ago, Jimmy James said:

I never understood Bruce's shhhh! shhhh! at the beginning of Mary's Place. 

He also says it before the E Street Shuffle at MSG 2009 full WIESS show.

Could mean something like 'everything be quiet and attention please, we'll start right now' [With full WIESS, not with the full show]. Which could, indeed, maybe be seen as pompous (and which all has nothing to do with Mary's Place).

Thoughts?

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5 hours ago, Lampi said:

He also says it before the E Street Shuffle at MSG 2009 full WIESS show.

Could mean something like 'everything be quiet and attention please, we'll start right now' [With full WIESS, not with the full show]. Which could, indeed, maybe be seen as pompous (and which all has nothing to do with Mary's Place).

Thoughts?

I don't think its pompous 

Bruce is American after all l

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15 hours ago, Jertucky said:

Then you should pony up the $750 to see the Broadway spoken word show. You go to a rock concert, you’re not paying be directed how to react by the performer. If the performer is good enough at his/her job the crowd knows how to react to the songs.

In a perfect world.  But as we all know, a lot of people are just there for a night out and a skinful of beer.

And I have no desire to go to the Broadway show.  I saw it on Netflix and found it boring.  I've read his autobiography and didn't need to hear him reciting it, because that's what it mostly was. 

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1 hour ago, Rizla said:

In a perfect world.  But as we all know, a lot of people are just there for a night out and a skinful of beer.

And I have no desire to go to the Broadway show.  I saw it on Netflix and found it boring.  I've read his autobiography and didn't need to hear him reciting it, because that's what it mostly was. 

Agree completely about Broadway. I honestly don’t get the appeal but to each their own I suppose. As I’ve said earlier, if he was playing that on my back deck would open to tell him to keep it down because I don’t want to hear it as I’ve already read the book.

I have nowhere to go with the shushing of the crowd. He can do it if he wants to. I wouldn’t pay attention to him if he shushed me as he is getting his payday at the end of the show and I paid my money to enjoy the show as I wish. Clapping along is not remotely close to holding up a sign or smoking a joint and blowing smoke in somebody else’s face which majorly deters from the ability of others to enjoy the show. It definitely strikes at Bruce’s pompous side.

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I would say one of the biggest things I like about Bruce's music is that he's very ambiguous in what he's saying. If he made the purpose and meaning of his songs 100% clear and easy to interpret, then he'd be just another one of those commercially successful musicians with no meaningful lyrics. I'm not familiar with those other tunes that you mentioned, but there's some kind of purpose to them, whether he's describing the circumstances that lead to someone going out and killing, like those are all songs that had some kind of meaning to them. Paradise being off of the Rising probably had some kind of 9/11 motif hidden in there. 

I think every song of his has some kind of meaning and purpose, but it should be debated whether that purpose is good or not. There's plenty of songs by him that have a purpose but do absolutely nothing for me.

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7 hours ago, tipyourkap said:

I would say one of the biggest things I like about Bruce's music is that he's very ambiguous in what he's saying. If he made the purpose and meaning of his songs 100% clear and easy to interpret, then he'd be just another one of those commercially successful musicians with no meaningful lyrics. I'm not familiar with those other tunes that you mentioned, but there's some kind of purpose to them, whether he's describing the circumstances that lead to someone going out and killing, like those are all songs that had some kind of meaning to them. Paradise being off of the Rising probably had some kind of 9/11 motif hidden in there. 

I think every song of his has some kind of meaning and purpose, but it should be debated whether that purpose is good or not. There's plenty of songs by him that have a purpose but do absolutely nothing for me.

Nice to see you posting @tipyourkap:)

A belated welcome to greaaylake 

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On 7/1/2021 at 12:43 AM, MacBruce said:

Why shouldn't Bruce write about such things ?...he is the greatest chronicler of the human condition there has ever been in popular music as far as I am concerned.

Nebraska; Bruce was quoted about the song "Nebraska was about that American isolation; what happens to people when they're alienated from their friends and their community and their government and their job. Because those are the things that keep you sane, that give meaning to life in some fashion. And if they slip away, and you start to exist in some void where the basic constraints of society are a joke, then life becomes kind of a joke. And anything can happen".

 

1. expresses the quest to escape from an society of oppression.

2. expresses the result of this quest, a rock n roll society, and the new quest: to escape from this newly found society within society 1., that only is a board-walk-pin-ball-childlish society.

3.expresses the result of quest 1. and quest 2.: a society that one according to 2 has left, and that permits a small fantasy Eden, that one has escaped from, but then only to reenter the society of 1., and hence the new quest: to not be a part of this society, to be on the run and never connect with it.

4. expresses the result of quest 3: you can not by being on constant run step out of touch with the society; a promise will be broken, ones running will be put to justice, the society of 1. will not tolerate a free play; and hence, since now there is no way out in this society, one is always in it, all one can do is to tear i down; hence the new quest: one will work for replacing this bad society with a new one: the promised land, and this will be done by in the name of this promised land disconnect with everything and everyone that are connected to this bad society. one must lose ones husband or wife, and also ones money.

5. expresses the result of quest 4. one who disconnect to other people, is on the way to nothingness; it is the ties that binds, that bind one to an existence; and so the new quest: to tie the ties that binds; hence critique of quest 4: the Moses-syndrom, that one could lead the many to the promised land, and had the right to count everyone who from this journey returned to the bad society, the idea, that one alone could change this society; hence the necessity to propagate the insight, that two hearts are not only quantitatively more, but also qualitatively better than one; one could of course make the ties come true by also marrying; and also: to show what loss of ties that binds can result in: the gone astray, that finds themselves hurled into the nothingness of no real relations, and tries to in one way or another reconnect to the ties that bind, even if those ties will be the leather-straps of the electric chair.

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