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“Hey Blue Eyes” is absolutely devastating in its withering criticism of American hypocrisy, but that’s not the impressive part. What makes “Hey Blue Eyes” such an astonishingly powerful song is the way it works on three completely different levels all at once–all while set against a deceptively lilting melody that seems ignorant of the lyrical content

In the final verse, Bruce ties a brutally effective bow around all three readings of the song:

She says, “In this house it’s so easy to set a world on fire
All you need is a name, the money, and a soul full of reckless desire
Upstairs the landlord is dining here with his criminal friends
Don’t worry, they’ll have the bags packed and be long gone before the real fucking begins”

Bruce intentionally uses the word “fucking” here, because he knows the effect it will have on us, his listeners. It jolts us, because we’re used to more artful euphemisms in his work. This is Bruce setting an alarm clock, telling us that it’s time to wake up from the spell of the song, time to go back and re-listen to the song through a coarser, uglier lens. And in doing so, we’re even more unsure:

Are we listening to an S&M prostitute reassuring her john that their session will be undisturbed?

Are we hearing condemnations of the U.S. president, who will leave office before the consequences of his actions, manipulations, and orders are fully felt–or the soldiers who receive empty promises and reassurance that their actions are legal and their return home imminent?

Maybe Bruce is calling out the defense contractors and oil companies who profit from Blue Eyes’ particular predilections?

The answer is yes. Yes to all of it.

And as the song trails the final chorus, we’re deeply unsettled by the realization that the chorus is our inner national dialogue: What are we doing? And yeah, it has to be alright. Because if it’s not, what does that make us?

Hey blue eyes, yeah, what you doing tonight
Hey blue eyes, hey it’s alright
Hey blue eyes, what you doing tonight
Hey blue eyes, yeah it’s alright

by Ken Posted on June 30, 2019
https://estreetshuffle.com

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The 9/11 20 Years Later documentary delivers a powerful and inspiring message of resilience through the words of those who were there, those who lived through and participated in the NY Fire department’s rebuilding, and those who carry on the department’s highest tradition of commitment to service.

Narrated by Bruce Springsteen - very fitting

 

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4 hours ago, el sergio said:

“Hey Blue Eyes” is absolutely devastating in its withering criticism of American hypocrisy, but that’s not the impressive part. What makes “Hey Blue Eyes” such an astonishingly powerful song is the way it works on three completely different levels all at once–all while set against a deceptively lilting melody that seems ignorant of the lyrical content

In the final verse, Bruce ties a brutally effective bow around all three readings of the song:

She says, “In this house it’s so easy to set a world on fire
All you need is a name, the money, and a soul full of reckless desire
Upstairs the landlord is dining here with his criminal friends
Don’t worry, they’ll have the bags packed and be long gone before the real fucking begins”

Bruce intentionally uses the word “fucking” here, because he knows the effect it will have on us, his listeners. It jolts us, because we’re used to more artful euphemisms in his work. This is Bruce setting an alarm clock, telling us that it’s time to wake up from the spell of the song, time to go back and re-listen to the song through a coarser, uglier lens. And in doing so, we’re even more unsure:

Are we listening to an S&M prostitute reassuring her john that their session will be undisturbed?

Are we hearing condemnations of the U.S. president, who will leave office before the consequences of his actions, manipulations, and orders are fully felt–or the soldiers who receive empty promises and reassurance that their actions are legal and their return home imminent?

Maybe Bruce is calling out the defense contractors and oil companies who profit from Blue Eyes’ particular predilections?

The answer is yes. Yes to all of it.

And as the song trails the final chorus, we’re deeply unsettled by the realization that the chorus is our inner national dialogue: What are we doing? And yeah, it has to be alright. Because if it’s not, what does that make us?

Hey blue eyes, yeah, what you doing tonight
Hey blue eyes, hey it’s alright
Hey blue eyes, what you doing tonight
Hey blue eyes, yeah it’s alright

by Ken Posted on June 30, 2019
https://estreetshuffle.com

Not sure I ever really listened to this song before. Just did and don’t think I will again. More stream of consciousness/spoken word than a song. What era was this recorded during? Joad?

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Nat. Geo. channel (129) in UK have been showing 6 one hour (approx.) programmes about 9/11, they are centred mainly on the stories of some who survived that day. They were on to prog. 4 before I noticed them, so I watched 4,5 & 6 they are so well made and compulsive viewing. All 6 are being shown today and again tomorrow so I will see 1,2 & 3, but ther are best watched in proper order i suspect. What some of those first responders did to save lives was beyond brave, you will not manage to watch any of them without a tear in yopur eye.

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2 hours ago, Jertucky said:

Not sure I ever really listened to this song before. Just did and don’t think I will again. More stream of consciousness/spoken word than a song. What era was this recorded during? Joad?

It's mostly an indictment of the Bush era, it's a stellar song! 

In the liner notes to American Beauty that were posted on his official website, Bruce Springsteen wrote: "'Hey Blue Eyes' rounds out the EP with one of my darkest political songs. Written during the Bush years, it's a metaphor for the house of horrors our government's actions created in the years following the invasion of Iraq. At its center is the repressed sexuality and abuse of power that characterized Abu Ghraib prison. I feel this is a shadow we as a country have yet to emerge from."

In a December 2013 interview for Rolling Stone, Ron Aniello told Andy Greene that at least 20 tracks were recorded for the High Hopes album. Among the tracks that didn't make the album cut were COLD SPOT, HEY BLUE EYES, AMERICAN BEAUTY, and MARY MARY.

The studio version of HEY BLUE EYES was produced by Brendan O'Brien. The presence of Patrick Warren in the musicians line-up suggests that this recording, or at least part of it, emanates from the Magic recording sessions. 

 

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2 hours ago, Flagofpiracy said:

It's mostly an indictment of the Bush era, it's a stellar song! 

In the liner notes to American Beauty that were posted on his official website, Bruce Springsteen wrote: "'Hey Blue Eyes' rounds out the EP with one of my darkest political songs. Written during the Bush years, it's a metaphor for the house of horrors our government's actions created in the years following the invasion of Iraq. At its center is the repressed sexuality and abuse of power that characterized Abu Ghraib prison. I feel this is a shadow we as a country have yet to emerge from."

In a December 2013 interview for Rolling Stone, Ron Aniello told Andy Greene that at least 20 tracks were recorded for the High Hopes album. Among the tracks that didn't make the album cut were COLD SPOT, HEY BLUE EYES, AMERICAN BEAUTY, and MARY MARY.

The studio version of HEY BLUE EYES was produced by Brendan O'Brien. The presence of Patrick Warren in the musicians line-up suggests that this recording, or at least part of it, emanates from the Magic recording sessions. 

 

Thanks for the info, I appreciate it. Still didn’t enjoy any bit of that song, but tastes differ.

I do hate when Bruce talks partisan politics as I think he comes off sounding poorly when doing so. I think partisan politics is embarrassing for whoever takes part in it to be honest, regardless of which side you’re on. The inability of people to call out “their side” completely discredits their point of view in my eyes.

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1 hour ago, Jertucky said:

Thanks for the info, I appreciate it. Still didn’t enjoy any bit of that song, but tastes differ.

I do hate when Bruce talks partisan politics as I think he comes off sounding poorly when doing so. I think partisan politics is embarrassing for whoever takes part in it to be honest, regardless of which side you’re on. The inability of people to call out “their side” completely discredits their point of view in my eyes.

The reason why I included this song in the Rising topic was trying to give an update about 9-11 in the words of Bruce Springsteen with the lesser known Hey Blue Eyes song. The facts contemplated in this song are undenieable (Abu Graib, US contractors greed, the responsibility of former presidents (all of them for my money!). But you are right about partisan politics especially since Springsteen has taken a political side. And I prefer not to go deeper in American party politcs here, that is not my aim. That battle has been fought as it seems over and over on the Lake forum. In matter of fact, my next post about the  9/11 20 Years Later documentary does offer the alternative for party politics ...

And yes tastes may differ, and I won't be surprised if this song might be exist in a more rocking arrangement. But we should keep and open mind and respect here the artists view point wondering why Springsteen did execute the song like this. Bruce's genius is to get across the perversion of torture through disguising the lyric within a melody and chorus that suggest a love song. When you realise what you're listening to , you're revulsed. And I think Springsteen makes particularly good use of Patti Scialfa’s backing vocals. We’re used to them being warm and comforting, of course, but in this context — listen to them, for instance, at 1:16 and 2:10 — their serenity makes them absolutely chilling.

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12 minutes ago, el sergio said:

The reason why I included this song in the Rising topic was trying to give an update about 9-11 in the words of Bruce Springsteen with the lesser known Hey Blue Eyes song. The facts contemplated in this song are undenieable (Abu Graib, US contractors greed, the responsibility of former presidents (all of them for my money!). But you are right about partisan politics especially since Springsteen has taken a political side. And I prefer not to go deeper in American party politcs here, that is not my aim. That battle has been fought as it seems over and over on the Lake forum ...

And yes tastes may differ, and I won't be surprised if this song might be exist in a more rocking arrangement. But we should keep and open mind and respect here the artists view point wondering why Springsteen did execute the song like this. Bruce's genius is to get across the perversion of torture through disguising the lyric within a melody and chorus that suggest a love song. When you realise what you're listening to , you're revulsed. And I think Springsteen makes particularly good use of Patti Scialfa’s backing vocals. We’re used to them being warm and comforting, of course, but in this context — listen to them, for instance, at 1:16 and 2:10 — their serenity makes them absolutely chilling.

It’s a great song, and its inclusion on Magic would have greatly improved the album, IMHO. However, it’s not the song I would talk about on a day like this.

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24 minutes ago, Frank said:

It’s a great song, and its inclusion on Magic would have greatly improved the album, IMHO. However, it’s not the song I would talk about on a day like this.

Maybe it might not the best song to talk about today, if you have a better Springsteen song that is updating the 9/11 event then shoot.

And that is why I posted that link to the 9/11 20 Years Later documentary, narrated by Springsteen:

"Through their own words members of the FDNY family will tell the story of how they righted the ship rebuilding the department and their lives in the ensuing two decades after the tragedy. We'll showcase today's FDNY inspiring other fire departments to develop resilient strategies modeled from the FDNY that they can use to recover when tragedy strikes.

The men and women of the FDNY are fighters. They had to be after 9/11. So this is not a story of tragedy. The firefighters that perished in those tower 20 years ago wouldn't want this to be about them. This story is one of uncompromising resilience of rising up and re-establishing the soul of the fire department of New York. No this isn't the story of a wreck but a rebuild. 9/11 was a day like no other. Please join me as we pay hommage to a lesson of resilience for the ages"

Resilience.thumb.JPG.f8710fe836d0b9e07ad82f29dac3ef2d.JPG

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1 hour ago, el sergio said:

Maybe it might not the best song to talk about today, if you have a better Springsteen song that is updating the 9/11 event then shoot.

And that is why I posted that link to the 9/11 20 Years Later documentary, narrated by Springsteen:

"Through their own words members of the FDNY family will tell the story of how they righted the ship rebuilding the department and their lives in the ensuing two decades after the tragedy. We'll showcase today's FDNY inspiring other fire departments to develop resilient strategies modeled from the FDNY that they can use to recover when tragedy strikes.

The men and women of the FDNY are fighters. They had to be after 9/11. So this is not a story of tragedy. The firefighters that perished in those tower 20 years ago wouldn't want this to be about them. This story is one of uncompromising resilience of rising up and re-establishing the soul of the fire department of New York. No this isn't the story of a wreck but a rebuild. 9/11 was a day like no other. Please join me as we pay hommage to a lesson of resilience for the ages"

Resilience.thumb.JPG.f8710fe836d0b9e07ad82f29dac3ef2d.JPG

I’m not criticizing you for mentioning the song. And as I said, I’m very fond of it myself. Also, I don’t feel the need to update anything. My point is discussing ‘Hey Blue Eyes’ today will inevitably turn the thread into a political one (which is not allowed).

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1 hour ago, el sergio said:

The reason why I included this song in the Rising topic was trying to give an update about 9-11 in the words of Bruce Springsteen with the lesser known Hey Blue Eyes song. The facts contemplated in this song are undenieable (Abu Graib, US contractors greed, the responsibility of former presidents (all of them for my money!). But you are right about partisan politics especially since Springsteen has taken a political side. And I prefer not to go deeper in American party politcs here, that is not my aim. That battle has been fought as it seems over and over on the Lake forum. In matter of fact, my next post about the  9/11 20 Years Later documentary does offer the alternative for party politics ...

And yes tastes may differ, and I won't be surprised if this song might be exist in a more rocking arrangement. But we should keep and open mind and respect here the artists view point wondering why Springsteen did execute the song like this. Bruce's genius is to get across the perversion of torture through disguising the lyric within a melody and chorus that suggest a love song. When you realise what you're listening to , you're revulsed. And I think Springsteen makes particularly good use of Patti Scialfa’s backing vocals. We’re used to them being warm and comforting, of course, but in this context — listen to them, for instance, at 1:16 and 2:10 — their serenity makes them absolutely chilling.

Well, I don’t think Springsteen is a genius. I think he’s just a guy who is a hell of a storyteller. When he tells stories he does well. When he talks politics he generally sounds foolish to me. I think he does much, much better letting his songs speak for themselves than he does detailing how his songs are about how bad the Republicans are.

As for good use of Patti Scialfa’s vocals, I’ll just kindly disagree.

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