Sunday, January 14, 2018

Born in the USA

This is where I ruin that Bruce Springsteen everyone loves.

This song about someone remembering the Vietnam war ten years afterward is powerful in that its lyrics read like flashbacks. The narrator remembers how he got into the war, how he couldn't get a job afterward, how his friend died over there after having fallen in love with a Vietnamese woman, and how now he lives in the shadows of the penitentiaries and the fires of the refineries.
Springsteen hid all this in a pop anthem. Brilliant in that it's preserved for people like me who strip away everything and think about the words.
My microphone was giving me problems on this one, but I liked how it watered down the guitar and made my voice sound a little washed away too. So I haven't re-recorded for those reasons. Seems more painful and ruined this way.

The last line of the last verse is my favorite: "Nowhere to gun and nowhere to go"?!?!
Gun rhymes with gone, like he's gone nowhere, but then of course, gunning being the only job he's ever really known beside working in a refinery or rotting in a penitentiary.
And of course, gun rhymes with run, and I've heard the Boss sing it as "run" before. But "gun" is better I think. It kind of sounds like "come" too, which screws with your brain when you hear "go" right after. And "gun" gives you a nice rhyme with "go" making the whole thing more true-feeling.

I'd like to re-record my version again some time.


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