Thursday, December 12, 2019

Bruce Springsteen - Cover Songs, Volume 7: 1984-1988

Once again, more of Bruuuuuuuce! This latest volume in the Bruce Springsteen cover songs album series deals with the years 1984 to 1988, arguably the peak of his popularity, when he was riding high on "Born in the USA," one of the most successful albums of all time.

By now, if you've been following this series, you've probably noticed that Springsteen really loves classic rock hits from the 1950s to the 1970s, with a special focus on the 1960s. That makes perfect sense, because it's the music he grew up with. So here's more of the same.

In terms of sound quality, seven of the 13 songs are officially released. I must admit some of the unreleased ones sound slightly rougher, for instance the version of "I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide." He's played that ZZ Top song a bunch of times, but always only in small New Jersey clubs when he's not on tour. We're lucky to get any recording of him doing that at all.

The song "Do You Love Me" is from the start of a medley. But I edited the end, and added some crowd noise, to make it a stand-alone song.

"I'm a Coward" is the song "Gino Is a Coward," a 1960s soul hit by Gino Washington. Springsteen changed some of the lyrics, and the title, but it's basically the same song.

01 Drift Away (Bruce Springsteen & Steven Van Zandt)
02 I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide (Bruce Springsteen with La Bamba & the Hubcaps)
03 Wooly Bully (Bruce Springsteen)
04 Rockin' All Over the World (Bruce Springsteen)
05 Do You Love Me [Edit] (Bruce Springsteen)
06 War (Bruce Springsteen)
07 Stand by Me (U2 & Bruce Springsteen)
08 Remember When the Music (Bruce Springsteen)
09 Love Me Tender (Bruce Springsteen)
10 Have Love, Will Travel (Bruce Springsteen)
11 I'm a Coward [Gino Is a Coward] (Bruce Springsteen)
12 Sweet Soul Music (Bruce Springsteen)
13 I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry (Bruce Springsteen)

The cover art photo dates from 1985.


  1. Hey, great stuff! Just some minor nitpicking:

    I'm curious as to why you didn't include his cover of Jimmy Cliff's Trapped on either this list (with the 1984 version released on USA for Africa, or the great 1981 version on youtube) or the last one. That's one fantastic song, and an even better arrangement by him :D

    1. That is an point! I've made 22 albums in this series, and I didn't include "Trapped" on any of them. The reason is that I consider that a "Bruce" song, since he's played it hundreds of times and recorded it, and the original by Jimmy Cliff is so little known. So, like you, I've made some albums out of Springsteen's early 1980s non-album stuff, and I've included "Trapped" on that.

      But hey, there's no reason why I can't put the song on an album there and an album in this series too. So I'm adding the USA for Africa version to the 1981-1984 album.

      Thanks again for reminding me of this oversight.