This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 26, 2002 1:59 AM. The previous post in this blog was Credit where due. The next post in this blog is And I think to myself, "This blows". Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Saturday, October 26, 2002

Where it's shaken out

Readers of this blog know that the release of the album The Rising marked the beginning of one of those periods during which I listened to a single album over and over until it became the background music for my life. I've now moved on to the next phase of my relationship to that material, and some of the songs that jumped to the forefront during the first 200 listenings are now moving to the background.

The one that is getting to me most at this later moment is "Countin' on a Miracle," the prayer of a 9-11 survivor (apparently female) to her love, murdered in the tragedy. The number starts off as a standard '90s Springsteen rocker, but some odd chord sequences quickly take it out of the singsong rut that plagued some of Bruce's writing in his writer's block of that period. Soon it switches over to a Beatlesque bridge sung over a string quartet, which I love but some will surely complain is just a Brendan O'Neill overproduction, and then it lunges into an incredibly dark litany of the important aspects of the victim's life. A wailing guitar solo ensues, at which point if I'm the only one in the house or car the volume gets cranked up substantially and stays up for the rest of the track.

There's an apparent edit, a key change, and a verse that may turn out to be the definitive sound bite from The Rising:

I'm running through the forest with the
Wolf at my heels
My king is lost at midnight
When the tower bells peal
We got no fairy tale ending
In God's hands our fate is complete
Your heaven's here in my heart
Our love's this
Dust beneath my feet
Just this dust beneath my feet
If I'm gonna live
I'll lift my life
Darlin' to you
I often wonder who first put a guitar in this man's hands. Who first showed that goofy-looking kid from Freehold around the fretboard? Can you imagine being that person? I have shaken the Springsteen right hand twice in my life (both many years ago), but I wish I could add that one.

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