A Cautious Man
July 22, 2007
 
Sunday Night Springsteen
Okay, I admit it. I have a blog that I don't post to a lot. If anyone has arrived here looking for opinions, I apologize for the small number of opinions actually expressed.

We are planning to do better, from now on. And by "we", I mean "me", but "we" sounds like there's somebody else who cares about what's written here. Heck, even the Cautious Wife doesn't know about this site. ;-)

Anyway, to inaugurate our "back to the beginning" phase, tonight's offering is "Blinded by the Light". That's right, the song that Manfred Mann took further than Mr. Springsteen. As it turns out, Mr. Mann may be remembered for the song, but Mr. Springsteen will be remembered for the career.

So, here is the original cover -



And the "live" cover -


These versions led to disputes about the lyrics, as demonstrated in the definitive "Blinded by the Light" sketch here -



Finally, Mr. S's cover of himself, which some of us may prefer


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July 08, 2007
 
Sunday Night Springsteen
"We've got an immigrant song for New York City" were the opening words at the Bruce Springsteen/Seeger Sessions show we went to last summer at Madison Square Garden.

Did I mention that we were right in front of the stage for that one? I mean, I told everyone I know ...

Lots of people are bothered by immigration, apparently - at least, immigration of people who are considered less than "desirable". Of course, those are the kind of folks who actually built the country, but why let facts get in the way?

The McNicholas, the Polaski's, the Smiths, Zirillis too
The Blacks, the Irish, the Italians, the Germans and the Jews
The Puerto Ricans, illegals, the Asians, Arabs miles from home
Come across the water with a fire down below

They died building the railroads, worked to bones and skin
They died in the fields and factories, names scattered in the wind
They died to get here a hundred years ago, they're dyin' now
The hands that built the country we're all trying to keep down
By the way, I learned from this guy (the source for all lyrics, setlists, and other important trivia) that the Zirilli family, representing Italian immigrants in the lyric, is Springsteen's mother's family.

In any event, "American Land" -


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July 04, 2007
 
Independence Day
First, go read The Declaration of Independence, especially the part in the beginning about having "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind". Seriously, I'll wait ...

Now, I seem to be repeating myself, lately. This is from something I posted on July 4 a couple of years ago. Because, no matter what anybody tells you, Independence Day is about more than invading other countries because our leaders would rather be political than protect our nation the right way -
I am a patriot and I love my country
Because my country is all I know

And I ain't no communist, and I ain't no capitalist
And I ain't no socialist
and I sure ain't no imperialist
And I ain't no democrat
And I ain't no republican either
And I only know one party
and its name is freedom
I am a patriot

And the river opens for the righteous, someday
Little Steven, I Am A Patriot

Some versions on video. First, Mr. Van Zandt himself, preceded by a great speech about how real patriotism means that you aren't complacent regarding your government. Sadly, it's from 1984, which goes to show how far backwards the Administration has taken us.



And Eddie Vedder, doing it nice and slow, then nice and rough.





What the heck, one more. Michelle Branch, with a nice dedication speech.


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July 01, 2007
 
Sunday Night Springsteen
Independence Day is this week. This land was made for you and me.


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London Calling
So, two summers ago, the Cautious Wife and I took the Cautious Kids to London. We didn't let fear of the bombs and bomb threats that summer keep us away (as noted here and here at the time). And we learned that a LOT of other people thought the same way, in the "We're Not Afraid" campaign.

Well, about a month ago the Cautious Wife and I decided to plan a vacation, for after dropping our younger child off at her first semester of college at the end of August. And we decided to go to - London, of course.

I have this funny feeling that the situation in Great Britain, combined with the deep-seated desire of Republican Presidential candidates to exploit it for their own ends, will keep the drumbeats of fear going this summer.

And my reaction is the same - We're Not Afraid.

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