Story 1985-01-16 Charlotte, NC

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, end of "Darlington County"
"Have you ever been to Darlington County?…"

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Shut Out the Light´
´´Thanks…..thank you, this is uh…..this song is a….it was around 1977, I was driving through Phoenix, Arizona….and I stopped in this drugstore looking for a book to read and I found this book called Born on the Fourth of July….and I, I remember I read it, it was, uh…. it was a story about a fella named Ron Kovic, he was a Vietnam Veteran….it was his story about coming home….I remember how I traveled on to Los Angeles and I was staying in this little motel and I swimming in the pool….I seen a fella by the side of the, by the side of the pool, sitting in a wheelchair….and we started talking and uh, he saw that I had a copy of the book, he says I wrote that book….and uh….I think it was the beginning, the beginning for me outside of when I was a kid when I had some friends of mine, people I´d been in bands with, who went and died in that war….it was the beginning for me thinking about it and what it meant to our country and what it meant to the guys that fought that war….so this is a song about coming home, it´s called ´Shut Out the Lights´….”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Johnny Bye Bye´
´´Thanks, thanks…´s a song, uh…..that I wrote about, I guess three years ago….and uh … the time, like, I´d go through these periods where like I remember I was nine years old when I first saw Elvis on television and my mother had him on….´cause my mother, she used to like I have the radio on in the kitchen every morning, I would come down for breakfast…. and she´d had like the rock and roll AM-station on all the time….(?) and she had him on TV that night, I remember I was about nine years old and I was watching, watching him and I went out and my mother rented me a little guitar….that I couldn´t play ´cause my hands were, my hands were too small at the time so (?)(chuckles) but uh….I guess, uh, this is a song I wrote I guess a little while after a friend of mine called me and told me that he´d died….and trying to understand how….how somebody that seemed like they had so much, was filled with so much life….and so much spirit….could´ve seemed like he got so cheated in the end, you know, something happened, something happened, something went wrong….but uh, I guess in America a dream that comes true can be a dangerous thing…..”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Glory Days´
´´(After the singalong) We oughta switch places, that's good (crowd cheers) now this is a song about old times….now, the older you get, the more old times you´ve got ….I´m around that age where I got my share….but now Clarence, he just had his birthday a few days ago….and he´s got, he´s got more old times than me…..but as you can see, he has maintained his youthful beauty….some of us got it, some of us ain´t….but anyway….I´m gonna get right down to it…..let me get my groove…..
(…)(After the 2nd chorus) Alright, Charlotte, go wild!…"

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´My Hometown´
´´This is uh….I guess it was around….´70….´76 and I was, uh… was right after the Born to Run-album came out and I had…..I had a lot of time off and it was the first time like we had a record (?) that´d done very good, I remember sitting around trying to think what it was that I wanted….wanted to do next, what I wanted to say, what I wanted to write about, what I wanted our band to be about and uh….I knew I guess I wanted to, to write about struggle because I guess for everybody no matter what your situation is, it´s a pretty hard way to go most of the time….and….now, there´s some people who, who got it a lot tougher than others and uh, right now….when you go out into the lobby, you´re gonna see some folks from the Metrolina Foodbank of Charlotte, North Carolina and….what a foodbank is is every year 20 percent of all the food that gets produced gets wasted, gets thrown away and meanwhile in every city and in every town there´s people here in, in, in a country that´s so rich there´s people here that are still not getting enough to eat, they´re going hungry, there´s old folks whose social security checks don´t get ´em through the month, there´s people who the trickle-down-theory of economics ain´ trickling down to, there´s….people that´s just fallen on hard times and, and need a helping hand…..and uh….I guess that I believe that the American spirit is a generous one and… when you go out there tonight, you can check ´em out, they´re the Metrolina Foodbank, what they do is they get all that food that would just be wasted otherwise and they get it to the agencies that go out there and serve the people and they´re working right here in your town to make it a better place to live for everybody here …..and uh, in the end, you know no, nobody wins unless everybody wins…..”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, towards the end of "Cadillac Ranch"
"Anybody see the license plate on that Cadillac?…"

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´No Surrender´
´´Thanks, uh….I guess our band has been together for a pretty long time now and uh…..(?) …´s nice to get to travel around with the people that you´ve growing up with and uh, but this is a song for, uh, somebody who´s not here tonight, this is for Little Steven and uh….he put out an album a while ago called Voice of America which was a really….a really great record….you get a chance you, you should check it out, it´s called Voice of America…..”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Growin´Up´
´´Now, this is a story about something that happened a long time ago….in a land far away from here….(?)….once upon a time…..
(….) And there I was….I was still in high school…..but I wasn´t doing too good….I was doing bad in my studies….I used to like daydream in class all the time….I was one of those who used to like, you know, sit there and look out the window across the field….I see this girl running across the field….she climbs in the window….she wants to know why I´m sitting there in school with all these clothes on….(?) then I would always get called on, they sent me down, they sent me down to the guidance counsellor….I walked in, he said ´Mr. Springsteen, what´s the problem ?´….I said ´Well, Sir, you see, it´s like, it´s like I don´t know what I´m wanna do with myself, I don´t know what I wanna be, I got no direction in my life, I don´t know where I´m going and like, like I need some faith, I need some hope, I need something to believe in, I need a date for Saturday night´….he said ´No, that´s, that´s too big a problem for me, you gotta go home and talk to your folks´….so I remember I went home and I went into the kitchen and my dad was sitting at the kitchen table, I said ´Pop, I got something real important I gotta talk to you about now….you see, I don´t know what I´m doing with my life, I don´t know where I´m going, I got nothing that I wanna do, I´m not interested in anything, you know, I got no faith, I need some hope, I need something to believe, I need a close interpersonal relationship with a member of the opposite sex´ ….and he just, he looked at me and said ´Get me another beer out of the icebox´….so that was it….I decided that society had failed me, I was gonna do myself in, I got out on Route 33, started hitchhiking down towards the ocean, I was gonna jump in and drown….(?)….so I got off at Asbury Park…..I had this phony I.D, I decided before, like, before I drown myself I would stop in and get a drink someplace… I stopped in this bar, I went into the men´s room and upon the wall it said ´Advice and answers to all problems, big or small, call this number´ so I had a dime, I went out and put it in the phonebooth, dialled the number….rang once….rang twice…..then I heard (Clarence: ´Hello´)….and it was some guy called Clarence ´He-who-knows-all´ Clemons….so like I told him what my problem was and he said he thought he could help me out so he gave me his address and I hitchhiked over to his house…..knocked on the door….the door opened up….we kind of checked each other out….we decided that we´d make a good team, we became partners…..and Clarence said he was having some problems of his own so he had just been to this gypsy and she had given him this map to the secret of the world….and he said if we followed this map at midnight when the moon was full that we´d find the answers to all our problems….so that night we got into his Oldsmobile and we started driving south….south down Route 9…..through Lakewood and Freehold, through Tom´s River….it started raining….and then hailstones started coming down as big as baseballs….and then a blizzard came up and hit….and then we got hit by a heatwave….and then a tornado came sweeping across the highway….and then a hurricane came up and the roof blew off the car and the fender flew off and the engine block cracked and we had two flat tires and the carburator busted and then….we find ourselves sitting by the side of this dark dirt road….and Clarence said what we were looking for was just on the other side of those woods….(source tape missing a part)….we came upon this big shade tree…..we could tell it was a shade tree because it had its shades on…..and then we starting hearing all these spooky sounds like werewolves howling (crowd howls) we heard lions roaring (crowd roars) mad dogs barking (crowd barks) homicidal cows mooing (crowd moos) now, Big Man…. there ain´t like no big beasts (?) nobody like getting ate alive in New Jersey or nothing…..(?) ….there ain´t no like killer animals or nothing like in New Jersey, that´s like in the Netherlands, someplace else (?)….I think I hear something behind us, I think I hear something behind us….(?)….whooa ! and all of a sudden there was this big man-eating bear but, but instead of jumping on us and making us his dinner, he was acting kind of friendly…. and he said, he said that he wasn´t mean, that he was just lonely….and that he ran away from the circus where they were keeping him in these cages and he´d been out in these woods for so long…. that if we´d be his buddies, he´d help us find what we were looking for….and I could tell by the way the dude wore his hat that he was smarter than the average bear….
and so, so we made a deal with him and, and he took us back to the woods…..and then all of a sudden…..the clouds pulled away from the moon….and in the clearing….we saw the answer to our quest…..and we stood there in the woods and we knew everything was gonna be all right….because…´cause….´cause when we touched….”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Racing in the Street´
´´It was around, it was right around the end of the summer and I had this old convertible Camaro I was riding around in….and…..I used to take it at night to this place down, there was this little strip off the river….it was kind of like a, I guess it was like a junkyard where people from town´d come down and dump the things that they didn´t want any more, just leave ´em out there to rust….and there was this little spot that we´d all meet on Fridays and Saturdays and it was the first place that I met her….and it was one of those, like, when you´re first going out with somebody and everything is, everything is funny and it´s easy, it´s easy to be with somebody….but then time, time kind of passed and I don´t know what happened, it seemed like the things that made her happy once didn´t make her happy any more….and I was spending my time trying to figure out….how, what had happened and what ….what I could do to make her happy again….and she got to where she didn´t wanna talk, she wanted to stay in at night…..and she´d take my keys so I couldn´t take the car out….and it was hard to get her to understand….and I know she knew it because (?) that she loved it once….that when I took the car out and when I won…..that it was the only time that I really got to feeling good about myself….and I don´t know if people expect too much from each other sometimes, maybe they do…..but to have just one thing, one thing in your whole life that you do, that you do good, that you feel proud of….that´s not too much for anybody to ask…..
(….) Well, that was the night that, the night that we left….just packed up our bags…..and we don´t know where we´re going yet…..but I guess that´ll come in time….but sometimes it seems like time gets running so short on you….like it´s gonna run out on you….and so much gets lost (?)….and there´s not much you can do….but to keep searching….to keep on going….. and to keep on going….and to keep on going…..and to keep going…..and to keep on going …..”

16.01.85 Charlotte, NC, intro to ´Can´t Help Falling in Love with You´
´´I´d like to just take a minute and thank everybody for coming down to the shows that we did here in Charlotte, thank you very much….and uh…..I´d also, uh, like to thank all you guys that I know waited out in line for a long time for tickets and stuff (?)….and uh….guess I´d like to thank you for your support of the Metrolina Foodbank (?)….use your help….and uh, I guess a lot of the power of rock and roll was the power of friendship, power of community ….and….and believing that like one person can do something to make a difference, this is…..”

Compiled by : Johanna Pirttijärvi

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