Story 1984-11-30 Houston, TX

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´The River´
´´Here´s a song about, uh….there was this place when I was a kid….just outside of town where….people´d go to be at night….it was some place that you could go….when you couldn´t go home….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´Johnny Bye Bye´
´´Here´s a song I guess I wrote about….four years ago, around four or five years ago and uh ….everybody, I guess, everybody has certain events, historical events that they tend to mark their lives by….and uh, I remember I was….and I can always remember like the exact spot where I was when, when, uh, I was in gym class and this kid came running across the field and told me that John Kennedy had been shot….I can remember what the weather was like and how I felt after that….and uh, I also always remember where I was when a friend of mine called me up, I was living on this farm in New Jersey, and told me that Elvis….and told me that Elvis Presley had died….and it was, uh, hard to understand how somebody…who had taken away so many people´s loneliness could´ve ended up so, so lonely…he deserved, deserved better than that….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´Glory Days´
´´Alright, well, this is a song about like, uh….you know how when you go out into a bar on a Friday night….and you´re sitting there and you´re trying to have a drink, you´re sitting there and somebody comes up to you, they´ll say….´Bruce, Bruce, remember me, remember high school ?…remember ? you know the guy, the guy that dumped the pizza pie on your head ?… Yeah, that´s me, yeah ! How you doing, how you doing ?´…howcome just everybody…that hated you so much in high school get so friendly later on ?….but then, like, you gotta sit there and like all they do is start telling you high school stories, you know….´Remember the night we went out and you were with that girl you really liked and they guy came over and spilled beer over your head and, and then she went home and´ ´Oh yeah, man, that was great, that was, we had so much fun, wow, it was a great time´….but like anytime I think back about it I realise like….I hated high school….I detested high school….when fall comes around, I´m still glad I don´t have to go back to high school….every night I thank God that I don´t have to do no homework no more… dog ate it (chuckles)….my little sister tore it up….anyway, in high school, I only had two interests….one was mainly guitar…there was like three or four other guys in high school doing that thing….and the other one was….everybody in high school was doing that….(?)….anyway, man, you get up there….I don´t know, old time stories ….anyway, of those two, the guitar is the one that I have excelled at….but the other one I´m still willing to practise, practise, practise, but I need some volunteers….practise makes perfect….alright….oh yes….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´My Hometown´
´´Here´s a song, uh….you know, when I was a kid….and I grew up, I think everybody has a love-hate relationship with the place that they live a little bit, I know when I was 16, I think I had about 95 percent hate (chuckles) couldn´t wait to get out, I used to get on the bus and go up to New York City every chance I got….and finally when I was able to travel a lot, I figured I didn´t ever wanna go back, I didn´t wanna go back again….but, uh, as you get older, I guess… kind of, it all kind of comes back around, someday….I guess when I was a kid, I was kind of afraid of like belonging to something or belonging someplace….because as soon as you belong somewhere, that implies responsobility…and uh…. I guess whether we like it or not, we all end up responsible for the places we live, the towns, the cities, the state, the country that we live in….and somehow, it´s kind of like you can run but you can´t hide from it….and uh, tonight when you go out into the lobby, you´re gonna, there´s gonna be some people out there, they´re trying to live up to the responsobility of living here in your town….they´re called the Houston Foodbank….and uh, what they do is a very simple thing, they´re trying to make sure that people that need to get fed, you know, need a helping hand, get that helping hand, get that food, every….every, every year in America, we….20 percent of all the food that gets produced gets wasted or thrown away and meanwhile in every city across the country there´s people going, there´s people going hungry and what a foodbank does is it tries to get a hold of that food and get it into the hands of agencies and the people who need it….so….so they´re right here in your town, I know sometimes like….you´ve had some, some hard knocks down here lately, you´ve had some plant closings, people getting laid off ´cause of the decline of oil prices and the demand for food has increased a 1000 percent just since 1980….so I guess that what they´re about is they´re about Texans helping Texans….and they´re trying, they´re trying to make your hometown a better and more decent place to live….so when you go out there, help ´em out a little bit….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´No Surrender´
´´I remember when I was, I was about 15….and I went into this….hullabaloo club in New Jersey….used to be a show on television called Hullabaloo that had like the girls dancing in the cages with the white go-go boots on….they had these clubs they franchised all around (?)….there was one in Middletown, New Jersey, and I went in…. and I seen this guy….that was doing a….doing a Paul Revere and the Raiders´song called ´Kicks´…we became real good friends….that kind of person that you just….share all your records with and he played a guitar and I played a guitar…anyway, this is for Little Steven tonight …. he´s got, he´s got a record out called Voice of America…..a really, really good record….if you get a chance, you ought to check it out, if you can find it…and uh…this is for him wherever he´ll go….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´Growin´Up´
´´Well, now, there I was….I was still in high school….I wasn´t doing too good….I´d gone bad in my studies so they sent me down to see the guidance counsellor … so I walked in….sat down, he said …´Mr.Springsteen, what seems to be the problem here ?´….I said ´Well, you see, it´s like, like I don´t have any hope, like I don´t have no, I don´t have no faith, I don´t have no, I don´t know what I wanna do with myself, I don´t know what I wanna be, like I don´t have no confidence….like, I don´t know what I´m gonna do´….he says ´Well ….that´s too big a problem, you better go home and talk to your folks about it´….so I went home, my father was sitting in the kitchen….I walked in and I said ´Dad, like I got this….I got this really big problem, like, you gotta help me with this, like I don´t know what I wanna be, I don´t know where I´m going, I got no direction….I mean I need some, I need some hope, I need some faith, I need, I need a close personal relationship with a member of the opposite sex !´….and he said, he just sat there and said….´Get me another beer out of the icebox´….so that was it…. I decided I was, even though I was but a young lad, I was gonna do myself in ….I got out on Highway 33, I started hitchhiking down towards the shore …I was gonna drown myself….(chuckles)…I got to Asbury Park….I got this phony I.D, so I figured before I´d kill myself, I´d have a drink first….so I stopped in this bar….went into the men´s room …..and there up on the wall it said ´Advice and answers to all problems, big or small, call this number´….so I wrote down the number and ran outside, put a dime in the phonebooth ….rang once….rang twice….then I heard (Clarence: ´Hello´)….and it was some guy called Clarence ´He-who-knows-all´ Clemons….so I told him my problem, he gave me his address, I drove to his house….knocked on the door….the door opened up….we kind of checked each other out….we decided we´d make a good team…..and Clarence had a map to the secret of the world….and if we could find this thing, the answers, all our troubles would be over ….so we got into his Oldsmobile and we started driving south…..down Route 9…. south through Freehold, south through Lakewood, down through Toms River (?), it started raining, hail was coming down, it started snowing and then a heatwave hit and then a tornado came along and a hurricane came by, we got four flat tires, the engine block cracked, the roof flew off the top of the car and then we stopped….we were on this little dirt road…..and according to the map what we were looking for was just on the other side of those woods….so into the forest we went….it was spooky in there….there were noises coming from all over….we passed by this big shade tree…..we could tell it was a shade tree because…. it had its shades on….and deeper into the forest we went …. we started hearing sound like werewolves (crowd howls) ….homicidal cows (crowd moos)….mad dogs (crowd barks)….roaring lions (crowd roars) ….Big Man, like, we gonna get out of here alive or what ? I mean there ain´t no like killer beasts in here, is there ? you sure ? I mean I ain´t ever heard of nobody being like attacked and killed in New Jersey or nothing, I don´t think I ever heard it, I don´t think I ever heard it ….I think I hear something behind us….(?)….wait, I´m telling I hear something behind us…. whooa! and all of a sudden there was this big killer bear except instead of jumping on us and eating us alive, he was acting kind of friendly….and he said, he said that he wasn´t mean but he was just lonely and that he´d run away from the circus and he´d been staying out here in the pines for so long that he needed some friends….I could tell by the way he wore his hat that he was smarter than the avarage bear….he said that if we´d be his buddies he´d lead us to what we were looking for….we said ´Alright´ and off into the woods we went…..and there all of a sudden, in the clearing, the clouds pulled away from the moon …. and we saw the answer to our quest….and we stood there in the moonlight and we knew everything was gonna be all right….because when….when….when…..when we touched….”

30.11.84 Houston, TX, intro to ´Racing in the Street´
´´I remember we met….it was on this little strip (?)….and like when we first started going out (?), you know, how it is all the time, you´re laughing all the time, always having fun, always going out riding….but then, uh, it seemed like later on the things, the things that made her happy once….just didn´t make her happy no more….and uh, she got to where she wanted to stay home all the time….just, just didn´t wanna do nothing….and she got hiding my keys at night so I couldn´t go out….and sometimes, I don´t know, it seems like….like maybe people expect too much from each other….you meet somebody and you think that they can take away like all your loneliness….when there ain´t nobody that can take away the loneliness… all you can hope for is you find somebody who…that you can share it with….and it ain´t so bad….
(….) Well, that….that was the night that we left….we just took what we had….and we got out of there….we don´t know where we´re going yet….but, I guess that´s gonna come in time…. but sometimes it seems like time, time gets running so short on you…. it gets running shorter and shorter all the time….there´s not much you can do but….but keep going….and keep searching….and keep going….keep on going….”

Compiled by : Johanna Pirttijärvi

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