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Customer Discussions > Classic Rock forum

The Bruce Springsteen Game


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Initial post: Feb 9, 2013, 6:56:58 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 16, 2013, 7:46:50 PM PDT
Lauren says:
"I wanna know if love is wild, babe, I wanna know if love is real..."

The Boss gets the Classic Rock game treatment here, and I'll be using a variation on the game format from the most recent Dylan and Steely Dan games. We'll be voting on each of his albums of the classic era (Greetings from Asbury Park NJ through Tunnel of Love) in chronological order.

Each voter gets two positive votes per day (no neggies) per album; this means that if we finish voting on an album mid-day, all participants have two votes for the next album that day. Votes must be used on two different songs. We will vote until we reach 12 votes for the following number of songs:

Greetings From Asbury Park NJ - 4 (It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City, Lost in the Flood, For You, Growin' Up)
The Wild The Innocent & The E Street Shuffle - 3 (Incident on 57th Street, Sandy, New York City Serenade)
Born to Run - 4 (Jungleland, Thunder Road, Born to Run, She's the One)
Darkness on the Edge of Town - 4 (Badlands, Darkness on the Edge of Town, Promised Land, Adam Raised a Cain)
The River - 6 (Hungry Heart, The River, Cadillac Ranch, Independence Day, Ramrod, The Ties That Bind)
Nebraska - 4 (Atlantic City, Reason to Believe, State Trooper, Highway Patrolman; increased from 3 due to a tie for the last slot)
Born in the USA - 4 (No Surrender, Glory Days, Bobby Jean, My Hometown)
Tunnel of Love - 3 (Brilliant Disguise, Tougher Than The Rest, Tunnel of Love)

I am giving Greetings, Born to Run, Darkness, and Born in the USA an extra pick because it's simply too nasty to ask voters to pick just three from each of these. The River gets six because it's a double.

There will also be two bonus rounds, one comprised of album tracks that did not make the initial cut and one with songs that were never released on a studio album. Four songs will move on from the album tracks round and five from the non-album round. Along with the regular album rounds, this will give us our top 40 songs. (EDIT: Due to a tie in one of the album rounds, the non-album tracks have been reduced to four.)

Semi-finals will be split into two groups and seeded (all the first songs to 12 will be split up, etc.), and we will vote as before. The top half of each group moves to the finals. This may seem confusing to those who haven't played this format before, but I'm sure it will become perfectly clear as we go.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 6:57:40 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 10, 2013, 7:45:57 AM PST
Lauren says:
For your voting pleasure, Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ. Again, you get two positive votes per day per album. The first four songs to reach 12 votes move on.

Blinded by the Light
Growin' Up
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood
The Angel
For You
Spirit in the Night
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 6:59:19 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 9, 2013, 9:58:47 AM PST
Lauren says:
I'll get this started:

Blinded by the Light
Growin' Up - 1
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel
For You
Spirit in the Night
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City

Growin' Up
Lost in the Flood

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 9:51:47 AM PST
Rob says:
Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 1
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel
For You-1
Spirit in the Night
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 10:00:02 AM PST
Lauren says:
Oops, forgot to list the songs I'd voted for. Please do that and mention who you're following when you vote.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 10:01:22 AM PST
Music Lover says:
after Rob:

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 1
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel
For You-2
Spirit in the Night-1
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City

For You,Spirit+

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 10:42:31 AM PST
after ML -

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 1
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel
For You - 3
Spirit in the Night-1
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 1

+'s For You & Saint

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 11:53:50 AM PST
Alt9999 says:
After SM:

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 2
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-1
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 1

Growin For You

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 11:58:17 AM PST
Lew Archer says:
after ☼,

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 2
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 1
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-1
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 1

+Mary Queen of Arkansas+
+The Angel+

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 11:59:22 AM PST
Lew Archer says:
I think "Tunnel of Love" (if not "Nebraska") is a good place to stop.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 1:01:39 PM PST
B. rogers says:
@Lew

"Tunnel Of Love" was the last Springsteen album that I had on continual rotation. After "Lucky Town"/"Human Touch" I found myself only going to selected songs...I found it to be a lot of work to find songs I really liked during the last 15 years or so.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 5:05:21 PM PST
MH says:
after Lew

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 2
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 2
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-2
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 1

Lost in the Flood +
Spirits in the Night +

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 5:11:55 PM PST
MH says:
I think "Greetings From Asbury Park NJ" should have at least 5 picks. It's full of true classics, just ask Manfred Mann. It would be a shame to rule out songs of this caliber so early in the game while later allowing 6 songs from the (imo) much weaker "The River".

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 5:43:27 PM PST
Alt9999 says:
Maybe we'll have wild-card selections like in the Dylan game

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 8:30:16 PM PST
After Michael

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 3
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 2
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-2
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 2

Growin' Up In The City +

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 9:33:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 10, 2013, 7:47:00 AM PST
Lauren says:
I am thinking of having another wild card round where we get to pick from the album tracks that didn't move on initially. And I may play a bit with the number of tracks available for each album as we go. But I'm pretty comfortable with having a standard number of songs from the different albums to initially move forward, in this case three, with some add-ons for albums that are considered the pinnacles of Bruce's work by many fans. The River gets six (2x3) because it's a double, not because I think it's better than Greetings or anything else.

If I go to five selections for anything initially, it will likely be Born to Run.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2013, 10:17:20 PM PST
Lauren -

Thanks for doing this. I could maybe see knocking down River to 5 picks but can't agree with Michael H. that this first album merits 5 picks - allowing 5 of 9 to move on just doesn't push the game forward very quickly. I'm comfortable up through Tunnel, after that I admit my interest wanes. It's your game and I'm happy to abide by your rules.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 10:23:56 PM PST
If you allow too many songs on an album to move forward, the game loses its suspense. Part of the point of the game is that you have to make tough choices.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013, 11:36:46 PM PST
Alt9999 says:
Yeah, I can see 5 songs moving on from "Greetings..." but I can also see 6 from "The River"... Some of us probably feel 4 is not enough for 'Darkness' either. Yup- tough choices.

'Tunnel of Love' is definitely the end point. In the 5 years between 'Tunnel' and 'Human/Lucky' Bruce went from being a bankable commodity to being an elder statesman. Nothing wrong with that. Just the market changed. He wasn't going to have three top ten singles from his albums anymore.

BTW I'm already fascinated by what 4 songs get picked from Born in the USA. Really. One of the most maligned albums in this forum.

Posted on Feb 10, 2013, 12:11:08 AM PST
MH says:
After MissM

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 3
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 3
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-3
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 2

Lost in the Flood +
Spirits in the Night +

Posted on Feb 10, 2013, 4:23:38 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 10, 2013, 7:47:21 AM PST
Lauren says:
Thanks everyone for your comments!

Based on responses, the game will cover Bruce's classic era from Greetings through Tunnel of Love. I think participation will fall off drastically if we try to go past that, and then we won't get people back for the semifinals and finals.

Also, I am bumping up the number of selections for Greetings to four. I think that's a reasonable concession to allow enough strong material to move on but also to keep the game moving along. I'll admit to being biased by having seen Bruce perform this album live in its entirety at the Buffalo show at the close of the Working on a Dream tour.

I am unlikely to bump up the number of choices from other albums. We'll have a wild card round that will give participants a second chance with some of these songs. I agree with Miss Miscellanea, though - you're supposed to make some difficult choices in these games.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 10, 2013, 4:27:09 AM PST
Lauren says:
After Michael:

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 3
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 4
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-3
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 3

Lost in the City

Posted on Feb 10, 2013, 5:09:59 AM PST
CD Lover says:
After Lauren:

Blinded by the Light-1
Growin' Up - 4
Mary Queen of Arkansas - 1
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Lost in the Flood - 4
The Angel - 1
For You - 4
Spirit in the Night-3
It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City - 4

Growin' Up a Saint in the City

Thanks for doing this, Lauren. The right albums, good format and good choices about number of picks from each album.

Posted on Feb 10, 2013, 7:51:02 AM PST
Ray Wilson says:
I don't think I'll be participating here, so I'll make a few quick comments and then leave you guys alone. First, the gap between BitUSA and Tunnel of Love wasn't nearly five years. That was the gap between Tunnel and the two early 90's albums. So if you're looking for a logical "early period" break, you're probably choosing wisely with Tunnel as the end. Although you could also make the argument that Tunnel marked the transition to the more mature Springsteen sound. So either before or after Tunnel of Love is a good stopping point.

I'm one of those who dismisses BitUSA from time to time. It's got its moments...Downbound Train is certainly one of Springsteen's greatest songs...but all in all I find it perhaps his least interesting album. Certainly his least interesting EARLY album. When you couple that with the fact that the whole world climbed on board with that album, and that I despised those early MTV videos that accompanied it...it was hard not to view this as the end of something great. Tunnel of Love was a nice rebound for me, and there has been a lot of great music since then. (His most recent album is the first one that had little value for me.) But, yeah, it's different...an older, more folky sound. Anyway, lots of good music for you guys to re-visit; enjoy your game.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 10, 2013, 8:03:15 AM PST
Lauren says:
@Ray Feel free to hang around or check in once in a while even if you don't plan to participate in the game. You seem like a knowledgeable fan, and I think this sort of discussion makes the games more fun.

I think I feel similarly to you about BITUSA. I loved it when I picked it up the week or its release, but over time I tired of these songs. Part of this comes from my extremely low tolerance for overplay, and some has to do with the fact that I don't find the arrangements and especially the production that appealing. The songs are generally terrific but the trebly sound that was all the rage in the 80s diminishes this for me.

That being said, there are some stone classics on BITUSA, my personal favorite being No Surrender. And many many fans do find this to be a high point of his career. Like Sunny, I'm intrigued by what will make the cut from this one.
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Discussion in:  Classic Rock forum
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Initial post:  Feb 9, 2013
Latest post:  Apr 9, 2013

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