Posts Tagged ‘The River’

Last week I blogged about Bruce Springsteen’s album “Born to Run”, number 18 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s 500 greatest albums. Today I thought I would post this wonderfully poignant song “The River”, which came out on Springsteen’s 1980 album of the same name. It so typifies the wonderful way Springsteen is able to encapsulate the hopelessness felt by so many in the town he grew up in in, Freehold Borough, New Jersey.


I come from down in the valley where mister when you’re young
They bring you up to do like your daddy done.
Me and Mary we met in high school when she was just seventeen
We’d drive out of this valley down to where the fields were green.

We’d go down to the river
And into the river we’d dive
Oh down to the river we’d ride

Then I got Mary pregnant and man that was all she wrote
And for my nineteenth birthday I got a union card and a wedding coat.
We went down to the courthouse and the Judge put it all to rest
No wedding day smiles, no walk down the aisle
No flowers, no wedding dress

That night we went down to the river
And into the river we’d dive
Oh oh down to the river we did ride

I got a job working construction for the Johnstown company
But lately there ain’t been much work on account of the economy.
Now all them things that seemed so important
Well mister they vanished right into the air
Now I just act like I don’t remember, Mary acts like she don’t care.

But I remember us riding in my brother’s car
Her body tan and wet down at the reservoir.
At night on them banks I’d lie awake
And pull her close just to feel each breath she’d take

Now those memories come back to haunt me, they haunt me like a curse
Is a dream a lie if it don’t come true? Or is it something worse?
That sends me down to the river
Though I know the river is dry
Down to the river, my baby and I
Oh down to the river we ride


Which is your favourite Bruce Springsteen song?

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At number 18 in Rolling Stone Magazine’s 500 greatest albums is “Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen.


This was the first Bruce Springsteen album I ever owned. And the story behind my owning it is quite funny. I had bought it as a Christmas present for my then girlfriend, Christmas 1981. But just before Christmas she ran off with another boy, dumped me for him. So I kept the album, and I have to say I think I got the best of the deal, as it is still an album I listen to and like.

The title track, which is also the opening track, has to be one of the best rock songs ever. It is Springsteen at his best. After this album I became quite a fan of Springsteen, and own 5 or 6 of his albums including “Darkness on the edge of town”, “The River”, “Born in the USA” and even “Nebraska”. I saw him live in Wembley Stadium in 1987, and it is one of the best concerts I have ever attended, he played for well over 2 hours and gave all he had to the performance.

If you haven’t heard this album I highly recommend it.

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