by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Bruce Springsteen - "Does This Bus Stop At 82nd Street". Taken from Springsteen's "first-ever radio station show and the earliest circulating 'live' material with the E Street Band", what I like best is that it doesn't feel like "Springsteen" or "The Boss" playing - it just sounds like a guy called Bruce, and his pals. Bruce is full of such joy; he's so happy to be there. Listen to the way he says "Yay!" at the end of the session. It's "Yay!" for chrissakes, but you can hear the smile. And before that, too - when Bruce droopy-slurs his way through "Rex said that lady left him limp"; when the accordion tips his head inside the door; when the saxophone shuffles carefully in, spinning and trying not to knock over the furniture; when Bruce gives two uhs and a "sock-it-to-me", as if he's trying the whoops on for size. These are the kinds of things I want to use to wallpaper my room.

On this recording, Bruce has a voice like Dylan or Van Morrison: a voice that strains into its lyrics; a man fitting into a suit that just barely, precisely fits. It's a singing that's suited to sudden jubilance, to exhortations, to whirls of feeling. He doesn't go overboard here, no, but you can hear the tremble in him - he's feeling like a real musician, a real singer, a real songwriter. Like someone who's finally caught in the current of his own career. Some lucky young matador.

The Desks - "We Will Rise, You Know, We Will". I think by this point we've established that I have a soft spot - nay, the softest of spots, just a hole in my heart, - for a certain kind of dusty murmured song. At least when said song is good. And "We Will Rise, You Know, We Will" is decidedly good, decidedly dusty and decidedly murmured. Like Julie Doiron, The Robot Ate Me, Doveman, Damien Jurado, Thanksgiving - oh, the whole boat of them. Here it's The Desks' electric and acoustic guitars, a creaky larynx, an organ and an electric harpsichord. And a song that's catchy, in its own tiny way. Like a big acheing ballad turned into a little train - a locomotive the size of an orange, puffpuffpuffing its way around your apartment.

[more songs/info] (thanks tim)


P.S. There aren't any readers in the Orkney Islands, are there?

Posted by Sean at April 3, 2006 3:00 AM

I love that early Bruce tune, Sean. I grew up on him in Highschool and still have a warm spot for him in my heart. Thanks for sharing that.

Posted by (Aunty) Debbie at April 3, 2006 7:52 AM

ME TOO !!!!!!!

Posted by Zaidie Ben at April 3, 2006 8:21 AM

Nice finds.

Posted by Tuwa at April 3, 2006 9:06 AM

hey guys,

check out the home and native love you're getting at


Posted by karin at April 3, 2006 10:02 AM

If there are any StG readers in Orkney, I doubt they can enjoy the full experience: the web browsers up there are only capable of displaying Picts.


Posted by Andrew at April 3, 2006 11:29 AM

love the bruce track...i got into him whilst sharing a flat in aberdeen with a bunch of orcadians. isn't that a coincidence!!! I got introduced to the joys of home bru and went up there for a few holidays. There was a local band who did loads of jam covers and the punters went mental. loads of fights and bodies crashing to the ground, then onto the harbour for a carry oot o fish and chips and a wee/big dram. aahh these were the days/nights..and bruce was the backdrop.

Posted by countrygrrl at April 3, 2006 1:20 PM

nobody was better than bruce in the mid-seventies. nobody!

Posted by tyler at April 3, 2006 3:55 PM

Sean, where might i be able to find a full recording of that show?

Posted by John at April 3, 2006 7:31 PM

I, too grew up w/ Bruce in High School. Always a guilty pleasure. Thanks Sean.
John, If you bitorrent, there is a copy of this being seeded right now at Jungleland:

Posted by Kevin at April 4, 2006 1:25 PM

The writing in this post cleaves my heart. How can you be so consistently beautiful?

Posted by Altman at April 4, 2006 1:57 PM

"There aren't any readers in the Orkney Islands, are there"

I didn't know that. I learn something new every day!

Posted by G-Dub at April 4, 2006 2:06 PM

Unlike the others above, I only started understanding Bruce about two years ago (criminally dismissing him as only slightly better than pub rock until then). And now this song has gone automatically to the top of the list for me. So sweet. (I feel a shopping trip coming on...)

Thanks again, sir.

Posted by Robert P, Dublin at April 7, 2006 4:03 AM

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This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

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about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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