Blinded By The Light

BLINDED BY THE LIGHT - V1a 5:03 GREETINGS / ESSENTIAL: 2003 / GH09
BLINDED BY THE LIGHT - V1b 3:58 USA 7” single

Note: According to Springsteen in "Songs", both "Blinded By The Light" and "Spirit In The Night" were written to order, after Clive Davis told him in mid-August 1972, there was nothing on Greetings From Asbury Park, New Jersey which could get radio play. His response was to go home with a rhyming book, which is what he used to write "Blinded", and without delay, "Spirit In the Night" and "Blinded By the Light" were both recorded on September 11, 1972. This was much to the satisfaction of his record label, who were pleased with the songs, and even more by their new artists' response to their implied request. Unnoticed was Henry Boy', which garnered respectable attention during the August Max's Kansas City residency, but was never played again. Perhaps Bruce used most of the song in creating 'Blinded By the Light', just like he did with 'Walking In the Street' when creating 'Thunder Road'. The legendary rhyming dictionary helped him with the lyrics, but 'Henry Boy' was the instant source of the music.

After the 'Greetings' sessions were completed, and the master submitted on August 10, most of the not-yet-called The E Street Band had dispersed to other obligations; David Sancious and Danny Federici were in Virginia, and Miami Steve was playing with the Dovelles. Bruce found his drummer, Vini "Mad Dog" Lopez, special guest star Clarence Clemons, who had not played in the June sessions, and Harold Wheeler to play piano; he played the rest of the instruments. It is not known how many takes were needed to finish 'Blinded', but it was completed in one day. Before it was released as a single on February 23, 1973, coupled with "The Angel", the engineers at Columbia edited out a verse, reducing the time below four minutes. The lyrics on the back of the 7” picture sleeve are also missing a verse. A stereo fold down mono version is available as the b-side of the white label promo 45.

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