I'll Stand By You

I'LL STAND BY YOU - V1 uncirculating
SONG FOR HARRY POTTER - V2a 5:32 uncirculating
I'LL STAND BY YOU - V2b 5:32 CDR EP
I'LL STAND BY YOU - V2c 5:32 O&S

Note: A mysterious history. A ballad written by Springsteen sometime between 1998 and 2000 and inspired by reading the Harry Potter books to his youngest son Sam. This is not a children's song, however. Sometime in early 2001, Bruce made the song available to director Chris Columbus, who at the time was shooting the first of the Potter movies. A Springsteen recording of the song was filed with the US Copyright Office on June 13, 2001. However the Springsteen song was ultimately rejected due to Harry Potter novelist/creator JK Rowling's contractual stipulation that no commercial songs of any type be used in the Potter film series, Warner Bros Music President Gary Lemel, who was involved in the Potter music, was asked by USA Today about this Springsteen song but said he preferred not to comment publicly – but in doing so seemingly verified the basic truth in the story. In September or October 2001, Springsteen donated the song to fellow Sony artist (and Latin/Salsa star) Marc Anthony, who recorded a cover version. In late 2001 both Sony and Anthony issued press releases specifically promoting the Springsteen composition and mentioning it would be one of the tracks on Anthony's forthcoming album Mended (and likely the lead single off the album). Strangely, when the Mended album was finally released in April 2002, the song was not on the album, nor was it issued as a single. A later special edition of Mended with bonus tracks also didn't include the song. There has been no explanation as to why the Springsteen composition was not issued. The song finally entered into circulation in February 2017 on the 'Odds & Sods' bootleg-compilation.

V1 early 2001 at the Hit Factory in New York City, NY. A rough demo version was likely recorded during the above-mentioned early 2001 studio sessions, but prior to the original studio version. This version leaked in February 2017 shortly after the original studio version.

SONG FOR HARRY POTTER - V2a The Promo CD-R The original studio version I'LL STAND BY YOU was exclusively given out on an in-house promo CD-R to some very few top executives at Columbia Records. The CD-R was burned on 31 Oct 2001, right around the time when the track was being offered up to the Harry Potter producers, and about a week before the Live In New York City DVD was released. The CD-R contains three tracks: "Song For Harry Potter", "My Hometown (Live)", and "This Hard Land (Live)".

V2b early 2001 at the Hit Factory in New York City, NY.
The original studio version is the finished recording that was copyrighted on 13 Jun 2001 and was apparently donated for the Harry Potter movie. It was likely recorded during the above-mentioned early 2001 studio sessions. This version uses the same core recording as the demo version but a completely different vocal take. It leaked on 10 Feb 2017.

V2c finished in 2019 specifically for the Blinded by The Light soundtrack album.
The official studio version, from which the above lyrics were transcribed, is actually the same as the original studio version, but fades out 50 seconds earlier, features more backing vocals, and the mix is a bit different.
The official studio version of I'LL STAND BY YOU was likely finished in 2019 specifically for the Blinded by The Light soundtrack album. It was produced by Ron Aniello and mastered by Bob Ludwig. Aniello is also credited as engineer and mixing engineer, Toby Scott is credited as engineer, and Rob Lebret is credited as engineer and mixing engineer.

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