American Skin (41 Shots)

41 shots
41 shots
41 shots
41 shots
41 shots
41 shots
41 shots
41 shots....
and we'll take that ride
'cross this bloody river
to the other side
41 shots... cut through the night
You're kneeling over his body in the vestibule
Praying for his life

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain't no secret
It ain't no secret
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living
In your American skin

41 shots
Lena gets her son ready for school
She says "on these streets, Charles
You've got to understand the rules
If an officer stops you
Promise you'll always be polite,
that you'll never ever run away
Promise Mama you'll keep your hands in sight"

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain't no secret
It ain't no secret
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living
In your American skin

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it in your heart, is it in your eyes
It ain't no secret

41 shots... and we'll take that ride
'Cross this bloody river
To the other side
41 shots... got my boots caked in this mud
We're baptized in these waters and in each other's blood

Is it a gun, is it a knife
Is it a wallet, this is your life
It ain't no secret
It ain't no secret
No secret my friend
You can get killed just for living
In your American skin
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=American+Skin+%2841+Shots%29

Notes

In 2000 "American Skin" caused the biggest controversy of any Bruce song ever when after hearing about the song, members of the New York police department called for a boycott of Bruce because they claimed he was taking side against the police in a case where a black unarmed student was killed by the police with 41 shots.

Live history

"American Skin (41 Shots)" has been performed live a total of 80 times.
First known performance:
2000-06-04, Atlanta, GA
Reunion Tour
Last known performance:
2017-02-25, Auckland, New Zealand
Summer '17 Tour

Release history

Total releases: 4
display_release.php?ID=33&songtitle=American+Skin+%2841+Shots%29&id=21&release_title=Live+in+New+York+City
Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, Live in New York City, live, 2001-04-03
display_release.php?ID=33&songtitle=American+Skin+%2841+Shots%29&id=22&release_title=Live+in+New+York+City
Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, Live in New York City, movie, 2001-11-06
display_release.php?ID=33&songtitle=American+Skin+%2841+Shots%29&id=23&release_title=The+Essential+Bruce+Springsteen
Bruce Springsteen, The Essential Bruce Springsteen, compilation, 2003-11-04
display_release.php?ID=33&songtitle=American+Skin+%2841+Shots%29&id=119&release_title=High+Hopes
Bruce Springsteen, High Hopes, album, 2014-01-14