So last week got a little busy, and on the day of our first presidential debate we find ourselves more than a week behind on the "American Songs" posts. So I'm going to take what is probably the easy way out, and devote a week's work of songs to Bruce Springsteen, who celebrated his 67th birthday last Friday.
With the publication of his memoir, a lot of folks have been posting Springsteen lists - so here is a seven song perfect playlist that covers some obvious choices, and some deep cuts.
"Human Touch." One of his very best songs, from the album many (most?) of his fans consider to be his worst.
"Badlands" and "Thunder Road." No matter how you cut it, these two will always be at or near the top of the pantheon.
"The Rising." There is always hope.
"Stolen Car." What makes this one cool is that I was actually at this show. An amazing song; a terrifying song. "I'm driving a stolen car/Through the pitch black night/I keep telling myself/Someday I'm gonna be alright/But I ride by night/And I travel in fear/That in this darkness/I will disappear."
"American Skin (41 Shots)." Hearing for the first time, at Madison Square Garden in June 2000, was a searing experience. And here we are 16 years later, and we're left to ponder, again and again, when things are going to change.
"Land of Hope and Dreams." And this is the song that leaves you hoping.