Magic - Studio Sessions


disco_magic.jpg
Commercially Released: September 28, 2007
Label: Columbia
Produced by Brendan O'Brien
Recorded by Nick Didia, assisted by Toby Scott, Billy Bowers, Glenn Pittman, Kevin Mills, Matt Serrecchio,
 Tom Syrowski and Tom Tapley at Southern Tracks Studios (March - May 2007)
Mixed by Brendan O'Brien
Mastered by Bob Ludwig
Photography by Danny Clinch, Mark Seliger

Overview

Springsteen completed the Seeger Sessions Tour in November 2006. In December 2006 producer Brendan O’Brien visited Springsteen at Bruce’s Colts Neck, NJ home to listen to a large batch of songs Bruce had written over what is likely to been several years. From this meeting a sub-group of songs were pre-selected as being most suitable for an E Street Band style of album.

Studio sessions began in Atlanta in February 2007, initially with just Springsteen and O’Brien. Some (not all) of the E Street Band members started to become involved in late February. A five-day “rehearsal and basic tracks” recording session took place at Southern Tracks from March 7-11 that included E Street Band members Tallent, Weinberg and Bittan. This sub-group of the E Street Band continued scattered recording session during March. ESB members Van Zandt, Lofgren, Federici, Clemons, Scialfa (plus Soozie Tyrell) appear to have travelled to Atlanta to add specific overdubs during the latter (late March to early May) stages of the sessions. With the individual ESB members’ roles completed by early May, Springsteen and O’Brien then spent May and part of June working on the final touches of the album.

Released

# Song Title Running Time Release
1. RADIO NOWHERE 3:18 MAGIC
2. YOU'LL BE COMIN' DOWN 3:45 MAGIC
3. LIVIN' IN THE FUTURE 3:56 MAGIC
4. YOUR OWN WORST ENEMY 3:18 MAGIC
5. GYPSY BIKER 4:31 MAGIC
6. GIRLS IN THEIR SUMMER CLOTHES 4:19 MAGIC
7. I'LL WORK FOR YOUR LOVE 3:34 MAGIC
8. MAGIC 2:45 MAGIC
9. LAST TO DIE 4:17 MAGIC
10. LONG WALK HOME 4:34 MAGIC
11. DEVIL'S ARCADE 5:05 MAGIC
12. TERRY'S SONG 1 4:11 MAGIC

Total Running Time: 47:47

1: Late addition to album as a hidden track, a memorial song for Springsteen's long-time assistant Terry Magovern, who died on July 30, 2007. Some pressings of the CD pre-ordered through Sony Music or other channels did not contain the extra track. The album as sold through iTunes does not contain this track either.

Visit our release-pages for additional information.

Additional Recordings

HARRY'S PLACE - V3 uncirculating
MARY MARY - V1 uncirculating

Details

RADIO NOWHERE - V1 uncirculating
RADIO NOWHERE - V2 3:18 MAGIC / ESSENTIAL: 2015 / GH09

Note: V1 was recorded late 2006 in New Jersey. V2 recorded March 2007 at Southern Tracks studio, and released as a single ahead of the album, after it had leaked out the previous week, resulting in several cease and desist letters to radio stations. On August 28, 2007, it was officially released by Sony as a free limited-time download on iTunes, to go with pre-orders of Magic.

YOU'LL BE COMIN' DOWN 3:45 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia.

LIVIN' IN THE FUTURE 3:56 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia. Soozie Tyrell contributes violin. Mentioned by Bruce as the first song he wrote for the album.

YOUR OWN WORST ENEMY 3:18 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia.

GYPSY BIKER 4:31 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia.

GIRLS IN THEIR SUMMER CLOTHES - V1a 4:19 MAGIC
GIRLS IN THEIR SUMMER CLOTHES (Winter Mix) - V1b 4:17 2008 digital single

Note: Brendan O'Brien persuaded Bruce to include it on the album. Springsteen said that "He (O'Brien) really heard its potential and turned it into a pop diamond". V1b, the 'Winter Mix', features a single-tracked lead vocal, a slightly different mix, and a few other minor differences. It was released on January 15, 2008 as part of an iTunes digital EP along with the music video and album version. Won the 2009 Grammy for "Best Rock Song".

I'LL WORK FOR YOUR LOVE 3:34 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-May 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia.

MAGIC 2:45 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia. Soozie Tyrell contributes violin, Jeremy Chatzky plays upright bass, and Patrick Warren adds Chamberlin and/or tack piano.

LAST TO DIE 4:17 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia. Soozie Tyrell contributes violin.

LONG WALK HOME - V1 uncirculating
LONG WALK HOME - V2 4:34 MAGIC

Note: Song written by Springsteen during 2006. Studio recording history is uncertain – this was not recorded during any of the three Seeger Sessions, although Bruce is likely to have recorded a solo home studio demo in the months that followed. Bruce premiered the song live as "Gonna Be A Long Walk Home" on November 11, 2006 during the Seeger Session Tour. The song was later studio recorded in Atlanta during March-April 2007 by Springsteen & The E Street Band and released on the album Magic. Patrick Warren adds Chamberlin and tack piano.

DEVIL'S ARCADE 5:05 MAGIC

Note: Recorded March-April 2007 at Southern Tracks Studios, Atlanta, Georgia. Features Daniel Laufer on cello and Patrick Warren adds Chamberlin and/or tack piano.

TERRY'S SONG 4:11 MAGIC

Note: Performed by Springsteen alone, a tribute to Bruce's long-time assistant Terry Magovern, who died on July 30, 2007. Written and recorded August 2007, "Terry's Song" was added as a hidden track to the album. It was omitted from pressings of the CD pre-ordered through Sony Music, iTunes and other channels.

HARRY'S PLACE - V1 uncirculating
HARRY'S PLACE - V2 uncirculating
HARRY'S PLACE - V3 uncirculating
HARRY'S PLACE - V4 4:04 HOPES

Note: The background of this song is somewhat confusing. First identified in a July 31, 2002 TV interview with journalist Ted Koppel, when Springsteen read out the lyrics to the first verse from his lyric book. Bruce has since commented that only the lyrics were written in 2001 (V2) during sessions for The Rising (although he has also stated that the band attempted to record the song at sessions prior to The Rising, perhaps in the late 90s - V1), and the music dates from the mid-2000s, probably from the Magic sessions in 2007 (V3). Springsteen confirmed that seventeen songs were recorded in Atlanta and that "Harry's Place" was one of the two songs that didn't make the final 15-song line-up for The Rising album – Bruce felt this rocker about a fictitious local kingpin didn't blend in well with the rest of the album's material. During that TV interview Springsteen, upon request of Koppel, actually recited the entire first verse of this song's lyrics. Comments made by Springsteen since suggest that only the lyrics were written in 2002, with the music added later. V3 was recorded at Southern Tracks studio during the Spring of 2007 for Magic. Bruce has said that it almost made the album, but was left off because he wanted twelve songs rather than thirteen, indicating the late addition of "Terry's Song" bumped it from the final sequence. Screen captures of the lyric book show that only the first verse dates from 2002, the rest appears to have been re-written in the intervening years. The song is not related, either musically or lyrically, to "Mary's Place" – they merely happen to share the same word in the title. Subsequently issued on 2014's High Hopes. It should be noted that "Hard Drive" (often mentioned in the same breath as "Harry's Place") was not a Rising-era recording or song – rather it was a never developed (i.e., no lyrics/music) title found in Springsteen's Rising sessions songwriting notebook that had first been seen and noted by journalist Jon Pareles in a July 2002 interview with Springsteen at Bruce's home.

MARY MARY - V1 uncirculating
MARY MARY - V2 uncirculating
MARY MARY - V3 2:51 BEAUTY

Note: V1 recorded at Southern Tracks Studios with Brendan O'Brien during the Magic sessions 2007, and again in 2008. V3 HH version completed 2013 with Ron Aniello. Considered for High Hopes, but missed the cut. Released on the four-track 12" vinyl EP American Beauty April 19, 2014, in association with Record Store Day, and digitally on April 22, 2014.


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