Story 1985-01-23 Providence, RI

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Darlington County”
“Hello, Providence (crowd cheers) are you ready for a little road trip? (crowd cheers)(intro music starts) got any gas money? (crowd cheers)…
(…) Take me to the river…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Reason to Believe”
“(?) we’re gonna be doing a long show tonight so you guys can sit down if you want (crowd cheers)(?)…yeah…this is a song…I guess the hardest thing for people to do these days is to find something to believe in, something they can hold on to…you always see…I guess on T.V they package, packaging and selling faith all the time …everybody’s out there searching for the spirit but uh…sometimes people get so hungry for something to believe in that they’ll believe …in anything that comes along…without asking enough questions… this is a song about blind faith and its tragic results…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Shut Out the Light”
“Oh, this is a song…I guess it was around, oh, 19…77, I was driving through Phoenix, Arizona…and uh…I was driving cross-country with a friend of mine and, uh…we stopped in this little drugstore to…get a book to read…and I found this book called “Born on the Fourth of July” (crowd cheers) by…a Vietnam veteran named Ron Kovic…and it was his story about coming home, coming back to America and what he found after being…away…and we moved on, we travelled on to Los Angeles, I was staying in this motel…I remember I was out, I was swimming in the pool and I got out and there was a fellow in a wheelchair sitting poolside…and I had the book with me and he said “I wrote that book”…and, uh…I guess when I met Ron, it was beginning of me, me trying to go back and search into…what had happened during that war to the people that had fought in that war, the men and women and the tragic effect that it had on our country…this is, uh, this is a song called “Shut out the lights” (crowd cheers)…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Johnny Bye Bye”
“This next song, I guess…I, uh…it was around, I guess we were out on the “Born to Run”-tour and uh (crowd cheers) it was around ’76 …and we were down in Memphis…playing at some little auditorium down there…and it was kind of late at night, I remember we were sitting around the hotel and me and my guitar player Steve, we got hungry (crowd cheers) and uh…we decided we were gonna get something to eat and so we called up a taxi cab and a taxi came to the motel and we said we wanted to eat someplace outside of town and the guy says “Well, there’s this place out by Elvis’ house I can take you out to” so (crowd cheers) we said “You know where Elvis lives?” he says “Yeah, yeah” we say “Ok, take us, take us to Elvis’ right now!”…it was about 3.30 in the morning so the guy drives us out there, I get out of the cab and, like, I get out and I’m standing in front of those two gates with the guitar players on ‘em and I look up the driveway and on the second story I can see there’s a light on…and so, uh, I figured Elvis must be up reading and uh…I decided that, well, I had to go meet him so I started to climb up over the wall and the taxi cab driver’s going “No, don’t do that, they got big dogs over there, they’re gonna eat you up if you jump over there” but, anyway, I jump over the wall and I run up the driveway towards the front door, which, uh, now I guess I consider kind of a stupid thing to do because I hate it when people do it at my house (chuckles)(crowd cheers) anyway…so, anyway, I was filled with the, uh, enthusiasm of youth and, uh, so I run up the driveway and I get to the front door and I’m about to knock on the door and these guards come out of the woods and they say, you know, “What do you want?” and I say “Gee, is Elvis home?” (laughs from the crowd) and they say “No, he’s in Lake Tahoe, he’s not here right now,” I say “Yeah, but, you see, like, I play the guitar too and, like, I was on the cover of Time and Newsweek” and they go “Oh yeah, oh yeah” (crowd cheers) “Sure, sure” (chuckles) “Oh, oh, you’re that guy, yes, sure, great, great” and they kind of took me by the arm and brought me back down and put me back out on the street but, uh (chuckles) I don’t know, I never, I never did get to meet him, I don’t know what I would have said if he’d have come to the door in, like, his bathrobe or something (chuckles) so, uh, uh, uh (chuckles) but I remember what I felt like when a friend of mine called me up and told me that he’d died, it was like some little part of yourself wasn’t there any more and it was hard to understand how somebody who came in and who took away so many people’s loneliness could have ended up seeming as lonely as he did…and uh…you know, it’s not right ‘cause he, he deserved a lot better, anyway, this is, uh, this is a song, this is called “Bye Bye, Bye Bye, Johnny, Bye Bye”…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Glory Days”
“Now, this song is a song about…old times (crowd cheers) how for some reason every time everybody looks back, they think old times were so good…now, the older you get, the more old times you got, like…I’m up around where I got my share…and tonight is Danny’s birthday (crowd cheers) so now he’s got just as many as me…even though they are much stranger (chuckles) now, the Big Man’s got more than all of us here (crowd cheers) but as you can see, he has maintained his youthful beauty (crowd cheers) yes he has…I tell you…but I hate it, you know, you always go out to a bar, there’s always somebody comes up to you, says “Oh, Bruce, Bruce, how you doing? Remember me? I went to high school with you…yeah, you know me, Bobby, you remember me, you know, study hall, the pizza pie, the guy that dumped it over your head? Yeah, yeah, that’s me, how you doing, how you doing?” (chuckles) You’re “Oh, hi, hi, hi, great to see you” (chuckles) but it’s like, in high school, I remember I hated high school (crowd cheers) I couldn’t stand it… I’m still glad when eight o’clock comes around at night I get to rock instead of doing my homework! (crowd cheers) it’s a wonderful thing, it never wears off (chuckles) in high school I was only interested in two things…now, one was the guitar (crowd cheers) and the other one was…was, uh…was…you know, that one, that one!…but of the two, the only one I really became proficient at was the guitar (crowd cheers) you see, that’s why the shows are so long ‘cause the other thing happens so fast! (crowd cheers) but I’m still looking for some volunteers who wanna practise, practise, practise (crowd cheers) I’m gonna get it down this year, New Year’s, my New Year’s resolution, get it down right (snickers) but, anyway, in the end all things must pass…and you’re left with nothing but glory days (crowd cheers) ready, boys?…here we go…
(…) Keep on rocking now, people (crowd cheers) don’t ever be stopping…don’t let me down now…‘cause I can hear that big clock ticking away, every minute of my life, every day…it says “Danny, you’re 30, you’re 31, you’re 32, you’re 33, you’re 34, you’re 35, you’re, you’re, you’re, you’re an adult!”…let’s dance!…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “The Promised Land”
“Alright…it don’t matter…how old you get…you gotta keep searching for that Promised Land…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “My Hometown”
“I was living…out in California for a while and, uh…I remember I was thinking back to the town I’d grown up in and…I guess it was ‘cause it was kind of a small town, it was real small-minded, always real narrow-minded, it was in the ‘60s…and uh…I guess, I guess most people kind of have a love-hate relationship with the place that they were raised…but I remember when I was a kid, I guess it was mostly…it was mostly hate (chuckles) I remember thinking I couldn’t wait to get out of there, I used to take Lincoln Transit up to Port Authority in New York (crowd cheers) when I used to step off that bus in Port Authority, I used to feel so good, it was like, uh, I was out on my own…I used to go down to East Village…walk around, could breathe a lot freer in New York in the late ‘60s…I remember thinking that when I got out of there, I wasn’t ever, ever, ever gonna wanna go back…and for a long time I didn’t…but then as I got older I started to go home off the road and I’d get in my car and I’d drive down, down the Main Street, I’d go back and see some of my old friends, see what their lives were like…and I realised that one of the things that when I was a kid that I was afraid of was I was afraid of belonging to something or belonging somewhere…’cause if you admit that you belong to something, well, then you got some responsibility to that place…if you stand up and you say “Well, you know, I’m an American” that means you got some responsibility to America (crowd cheers) and uh…in this country there’s a lot of things to be proud of and we’ve got a lot of things to be ashamed of…and it’s the things that we got to be ashamed of that we all gotta, gotta work on…but tonight…tonight when you go out into the lobby, you’re gonna see some folks from the Rhode Island Community Foodbank (some cheers) and what a foodbank is every year here in America about 20 percent of all the food that gets produced ends up just getting wasted and thrown away and meanwhile in every city and in every state there’s people that are going hungry, there’s old folks whose social security checks don’t get ‘em through the month, there’s kids that are under-nourished, there’s people who the trickle-down theory of economics ain’t trickling down to (crowd cheers) the economic recovery isn’t getting down to the people that need it the most, the bottom end of the social ladder and uh…so those are the people that need a hand and if the government don’t do it, then the people gotta do it (crowd cheers) so…when you get out there tonight, you should check ‘em out, see what they, see what they got, they can use, like, if you got a buck you can spare, they can use that, they can probably use some volunteers to help them out maybe in the warehouses…they’re here in Rhode Island, they’re trying to make this a better state, a more decent state for all the people who live in it (crowd cheers) and in the end…you know, sometimes hunger seems like something that’s always happening a long ways away but it happens every day right here in your hometown(crowd cheers)…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Thunder Road”
“(after the sing-along) Are you talking to me? (crowd cheers)…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Cadillac Ranch”
“Has anybody…seen my Cadillac out there? (crowd cheers)…look out, I’m a roadrunner, baby…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Pink Cadillac”
“Take it easy right here…well, now, this is a song about the conflict …between worldly things and spiritual health…between desires of the flesh (crowd cheers) and spiritual ecstasy…they say “Brother, you can’t have both”…well, now, where did this conflict begin?… well, it began in the beginning in a place called the Garden of Eden…now, the Garden of Eden was originally believed to have been located in Mesopotamia…but the latest theological studies have found that its actual location was ten miles south of Jersey City, off the New Jersey Turnpike (crowd cheers) that is why they call it the Garden State…everybody knows that…but, now, understand…in the Garden of Eden, there were none of the accoutrements of modern living…you didn’t go home at night and snuggle up in a nice little soft bed, you didn’t take your little Pop-Tarts and put ‘em in the toaster and then jump in the sack and watch Johnny Carson…they didn’t have no designer jeans, you didn’t drive out on to the highway to buy a cheeseburger when you wanted one…no Sir!…in the Garden of Eden there was no sin… there was no sex (crowd boos) man lived in a state of innocence… well, now, when it comes to no sex, I prefer the state of guilt that I constantly live in (crowd cheers) but before the beginning of the tour, I decided to make a spiritual journey to the location of the Garden of Eden to find out the answer to some of these mysteries …and so I hitchhiked on out there…and that spot was now occupied by Happy Dan’s Celebrity Used Car Lot….I walked in, the man said to me “Son, you need a yellow convertible, a four-door DeVille with a Continental spare, wide chrome wheels, air-conditioning, automatic heat, a full fold-out bed in your backseat, eight-track tapedeck, TV and a phone so you can speak to your baby when you’re driving all alone” (crowd cheers) I said ‘I’ll take two’…then I said “But Dan, Dan, that’s really not the reason I came, you see, I wanna know the answer to this conflict that I feel all the time, why do I feel so much temptation, why does my soul pull me one way and my body pull me the other…and he said “Well, son, that’s easy because right here on these ten beautiful commercially-zoned acres was the sweetest little paradise that man had ever seen, now, in the Garden of Eden there were many wondrous things: there was a Tree of Life, there was a Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, there was a man, Adam, there was a woman, Eve, and she looked so fine …and when Adam kissed her, it was the first time that a man had ever kissed a woman…and she had legs that were long and soft to the touch…and when Adam touched her, it was the first time that a man had ever touched a woman…and then they went out into the green fields…and they lay down…and when Adam…let’s just say it was the first time (crowd cheers) but there was something else in the Garden of Eden on that day, old Satan came slithering up on his belly and somehow he turned their love into a betrayal and sent them driving down into the darkness below…but that’s alright because right here tonight on our back lot for 9,995 and no money down, don’t worry if you’ve got bad credit, it’s good here, I have their getaway car (crowd cheers) and if you’ve got the nerve to ride…I’ve got the keys….to the first….pink….Cadillac…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Racing in the Street”
“I remember it was around, it was around the end of the summertime…and, uh…the fall was just coming on and…I was riding around, I remember I had this old Camaro that I’d bought for 500 dollars (crowd cheers) it was a convertible (chuckles) and uh…I was riding around in that thing, on the weekends there was this little strip off the river…I guess it was like a junkyard, people from town’d bring down all the things they didn’t want and dump them off there and leave ‘em to rust, rust away…and, uh, sometimes on the weekends we’d go down there, we’d sit around on the cars, talking…that was the first place that I saw her…and we started going out, you know how it is when you’re first going out, uh, everything is…great, it’s fun all the time, laughing all the time… don’t matter what you do…but, uh…I guess time passed and it seemed like the things that made her happy once didn’t make her happy any more…and I was spending most of my time trying to figure out what it was that I was doing and what I could do to make her happy again…she got to where she wanted to stay in the house all the time, she didn’t talk much…she got to hiding my keys at night so that I wouldn’t take the car out…I don’t know, maybe people expect too much of each other…but I know it can hard to make her understand that when I took the car out…and when I won, that it was the only time that I got to feeling good about myself…and that to have just one thing in your life that you do that makes you feel proud of yourself…that’s not too much for anybody to ask…not too much at all…
(…) Well, that was the night…that was the night that we left…we still 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 left behind…and there’s not much you can do but keep going and keep on searching…and you keep on going and you keep on going…and you keep on going and you keep on going and you keep on going…”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Can’t Help Falling in Love with You”
“Thank you…I’d like to…just take a minute and thank everybody for coming down to the show tonight (crowd cheers) and I’d also like to thank you guys who I know wait out in line for a long time for tickets (crowd cheers) we appreciate it…and…I’d also like to thank you for your support of the Rhode Island Community Foodbank (crowd cheers) I think, uh…that, uh…a lot of the power of rock’n’roll always came from a feeling of friendship and community…and Elvis, I guess, showed that one person can, can really make a difference …so in the end…nobody wins unless everybody wins (crowd cheers) …”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, middle of “Detroit Medley”
“Alright now…in the travelling band we got…Roy Bittan on the piano (crowd cheers) Garry W. Tallent on the bass guitar (crowd cheers) Patti Scialfa on the vocals (crowd cheers) the Mighty Max Weinberg on the drums (crowd cheers) the birthday man, Phantom Dan Federici on the organ (crowd cheers) Mr. Nils Lofgren on the guitar (crowd cheers) and last but not least…the greatest thing you have ever seen…on the saxophone, the Big Man, Clarence Clemons (crowd cheers)…ah, let me check my schedule now…it says “Los Angeles, California…Phoenix, Arizona…Dallas, Texas…Houston… Austin…Baton Rouge, Louisiana…Birmingham, Alabama…Memphis …Greensboro, North Carolina…Charlotte…Columbia…Boston (crowd cheers) moving up through New York and New Jersey (crowd cheers) Washington D.C…until we strike Providence, Rhode Island (crowd cheers) are you ready to travel? (crowd cheers) are you ready to travel? (crowd cheers) you’re gonna have to quit your job (crowd cheers) you’re gonna have to quit school (crowd cheers) you’re gonna have to kiss your baby goodbye (crowd cheers) you’re gonna have to say goodbye to your mama and your papa if you wanna be in a rock’n’roll band (crowd cheers) are you ready to go? (crowd cheers) are you ready to go? (crowd cheers) are you ready to go? (crowd cheers) are you ready to go? (crowd cheers) let’s go …”

23.01.85 Providence, RI, intro to “Twist and Shout”
“You know…I think I’m just about getting my second wind right here (crowd cheers)…
(…) Oh…I’m grooving in overdrive now (crowd cheers) this is my favourite part of the night…I get to see who’s been looking at me all night (crowd cheers) how’s everybody back there on the hill? (crowd cheers) hey, what’s happening? (chuckles) and how’s all the bums in the bleacher seats? (crowd cheers) and how you doing down here? (crowd cheers) that’s good…because…you see…there’s just one thing that I gotta know before I go…I mean, there’s just one question that…I need an answer to…see, what I wanna know is …what I wanna know is…is…how can I say it?…well, do you love me? (sings some of “Do You Love Me?”)…”

Compiled by Johanna Pirttijärvi

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