Who’s the Boss? – Live/1975–85: Disc 2

Who's The Boss? Welcome back, as we continue with the first album of the “Who’s the Boss?” series – Live/1975–85. If you missed the first disc, you can go back and check it out. I really enjoyed that first disc, and I like it more each time I listen to it. Let’s see if Disc 2 is just as good.


As we know from the first disc, Live/1975–85 consists of performances from several different concerts. On the first disc, there were several songs that were recorded in the ’70s. From here on out, the songs were all recorded in the ’80s.

Cadillac Ranch

Recorded July 6, 1981 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: This was a pleasant surprise. This song rocks! This is a million times better than “Pink Cadillac.”

Upon further listening: I still love it! This is a fun, rockin’ party song.

You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)

Recorded December 29, 1980 at Nassau Coliseum

Initial thought: Another really good rockin’ song.

Upon further listening: I still love this one too. It really jams!!

Independence Day

Recorded July 6, 1981 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: OK, time to slow things down a bit. This would actually make a good Country song. I do like songs that tell stories. And the band is tight in this – especially when the sax solo kicks in.

Upon further listening: This song is a bit of a downer after listening to two fun songs in a row. And by “downer”, I mean “angsty”. This is a very good song. I’ll take angsty Bruce over angsty grunge any day of the week!

Badlands

Recorded November 5, 1980 at Arizona State University, the night after the election of Ronald Reagan to the United States presidency

Initial thought: Here is another song that I was aware of, but never heard. This is outstanding! I am officially happy that this album is on my iPod.

Upon further listening: I’m loving this one more and more. This is a great rocker.

Because the Night

Recorded December 28, 1980 at Nassau Coliseum

Initial thought: I love this song so much. It was one of my favorite songs when 10,000 Maniacs covered it for their MTV Unplugged appearance in 1993. I wore out the cassingle. I knew that Bruce wrote this, and that it was also done by Patti Smith. But, it was so long ago, that I forgot about it. So this was another pleasant surprise.

Upon further listening: I really can’t get enough of this song! I downloaded the 10,000 Maniacs version as well. I love both versions equally.

Candy’s Room

Recorded July 8, 1981 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: Another winner! Again, Max Weinberg is incredible on drums. There is great guitar work in this too. So far, I’m liking this second disc more than the first one.

Upon further listening: I’m sticking with my initial thought on this one. This song is awesome! As much as I liked the first disc, I am liking this one better.

Darkness On the Edge of Town

Recorded December 29, 1980 at Nassau Coliseum

Initial thought: I had heard of this, but I think I mainly knew it because it’s the title of one of Bruce’s albums. I had never heard this song either. It’s not bad. It’s not knocking me off my feet, but it is pretty damn good.

Upon further listening: Out of all of the songs from this album, this is the one that improved the most in my mind. I went from “not bad” to Loving it!!! And out of all the songs on the album, this is this song that plays in my head (aka earworm) most often. And I don’t mind at all.

Racing In the Street

Recorded July 6, 1981 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: I’m a little bored by this one. The piano is good. But this is a little to slow and boring for me. Of all the great songs from this disc so far, this song had to be the one that is more than 8 minutes long.

Upon further listening: This is another song that I’m liking a lot more. I realize with Bruce’s slower stuff like this, you really need to listen to the lyrics. And after studying the lyrics, I realize the music is perfect for this.

This Land Is Your Land

Recorded December 28, 1980 at Nassau Coliseum

Initial thought: Nice recovery! I’m used to this song being done at a faster pace. But Bruce slowed this one down, and I think this is the best version of it that I have ever heard.

Upon further listening: I love patriotic songs, and this version of this song is one of my favorites. So perfect!

Nebraska

Recorded August 6, 1984 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: I heard of this album and song, but never heard the song before. This is a little slow, but tells a story. Geez, a very dark story!

Upon further listening: Very good song. Again, you need to listen more for the lyrics than the music for this one.

Johnny 99

Recorded August 19, 1985 at Giants Stadium

Initial thought: Here’s another dark song. Well, at least it was smart keeping the dark songs lumped together.

Upon further listening: Another outstanding song. This one does move a little faster than the last song. This is yet another one that I like more each time I listen.

Reason to Believe

Recorded August 19, 1984 at Meadowlands Arena

Initial thought: The best part of this song is that it isn’t a cover of the Rod Stewart song. If I never hear the Rod Stewart Unplugged version of “Reason to Believe” again, it would be too soon. So, this song scored some points with me for not being that song. I still wasn’t that impressed.

Upon further listening: This isn’t too bad. I’m not blown away with this one, but it is pretty decent.

Born in the USA

Recorded September 30, 1985 at the Los Angeles Coliseum

Initial thought: If I had bought this album when it was originally released, this would have been the second song that I would have known so far. Of course this song is great. And I really like the guitar at the end of this song a lot. It makes this song better than the studio version.

Upon further listening: I love this song so much! As much as I loved the original version, the live version is even better!

Seeds

Recorded September 30, 1985 at the LA Coliseum

Initial thought: Woo hoo, another rocker!! Love it!

Upon further listening: I love how the disc started off with a couple of rockers, and then ends with a couple of rockers. So, so good!

Fun Facts

Fun Facts. Woo-ooo-ooo. Say it proud and Geek Out Loud, it’s fun facts

– Bruce Springsteen performed as lead vocalist for ‘The Castiles’ and ‘The Child’ also known as ‘The Steelmill’ before making a band with New Jersey based members called ‘Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J’. Later on, this band was renamed ‘The E Street Band’ with which he now performs.
(http://www.celebrityfunfacts.com/bruce-springsteen/f34b75/)

– There really is an E Street. It runs northeast through the New Jersey shore town of Belmar. According to Springsteen lore, the band took its name from the street because original keyboard player David Sancious’ mother lived there and allowed the band to rehearse in her house.
(http://mentalfloss.com/article/22830/60-springsteen-facts-bruces-60th-birthday)

– According to one of his friends, Frank Stefanko, Bruce is a great photographer and enjoys taking photographs of strange looking billboards and comic Diner signs in the New Jersey. (http://mentalfloss.com/article/22830/60-springsteen-facts-bruces-60th-birthday)


Are you enjoying this album so far? Please comment, and let me know if you are discovering this music along with me, and what you think.
And if you are already a Springsteen fan, please leave your thoughts as well! What’s your favorite album? How many times have you seen him in concert? Tell me any stories you have about his concerts.

We’ll be back to wrap up this album next week.

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