Lonesome Day (2002) – Bruce Springsteen

After the double album release Human Touch and Lucky Town (1992), I found sprinkles of Bruce magic released on the Tracks record which contained mostly never-before-released songs recorded during the sessions for his many albums. Songs like Happy which has already featured here and Loose Change soon to be discussed, really impressed me. There was also his solo – acoustic era with tracks like Dead Man Walkin’ which was the title track for the movie starring Sean Penn and Susan Sarandon and Devils and Dust and The Ghost of Tom Joad.

The record The Rising (2002) which today’s song Lonesome Day introduced couldn’t be more aptly titled as far as Springsteen’s music career was concerned. This was Springsteen’s Rising after his scattering of greatness throughout the 90’s to a full-blown powerhouse record despite its solemn subject matter.

The Rising record was released after the attack on the twin towers in New York. This record was a dedication to the victims and survivors of that terrible day. The Rising was symbolically named to praise the heroism of the firefighters and emergency teams heading up the stairwells of the Towers before they collapsed…Springsteen said he got the inspiration for the album a few days after the 9/11 attacks, when a stranger in a car stopped next to him, rolled down his window and said: “We need you now”.

[Verse 1]
Baby, once I thought I knew
Everything I needed to know about you
Your sweet whisper, your tender touch
I didn’t really know that much

[Pre-Chorus 1]
Joke’s on me, but it’s going to be okay
If I can just get through this lonesome day

Lonesome day

[Verse 2]
Hell’s brewing, dark sun’s on the rise
This storm will blow through, by and by
House is on fire, vipers in the grass
Little revenge and this too shall pass

Lonesome Day is the opening track of The Rising and sets the tone for the record as one of many songs on the album with lyrics that appear to be inspired by the September 11, 2001 attacks. In my previous entry from Bruce on this record – Countin on a Miracle I wrote that I thought that song contained one of the most magnificent ‘Bridge’ stanzas I have ever heard.

Since its initial appearance on The Rising, Lonesome Day has appeared on several subsequent Bruce Springsteen releases. A live performance from The Rising Tour was included on the DVD Live in Barcelona which is presented below. This is one of my favourite concert performances I have had the good fortune to see many times on DVD.

1. Lonesome Day – Wikipedia

“The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.”- Michel Legrand

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23 comments on “Lonesome Day (2002) – Bruce Springsteen
  1. Badfinger (Max) says:

    I’ve heard this song a few times…I do like this song and I don’t say that a lot after the 80s or early 90s.

    • I regretted coming off a bit obtuse and arrogant with the Janis song.
      Anyhows, yeh this is one of Bruce’s best songs post 2000 but I did see the ‘Western Stars’ documentary released a little while back, which I’m sure you’d like if you haven’t seen it already.

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        You didn’t Matt….it’s fine…at least you respect the woman….that’s all I ask.
        Bailey made me watch that also…yes I did like it. He knows more Dylan and Springsteen from 2000 to now than I do.

      • Thanks for your your comprehension. I’m currently writing about Dylan’s ‘Long and Wasted Years’ from his Tempest 2012 record.

        I’m glad you saw the Bruce documentary. There are some great songs on that Western Stars album including the title track. You are right about younger folk like Bailey keeping you in touch. The same goes here with my kids who always put me onto things. Cheers Max

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        I did like some of those songs I will admit. When we went to see Dylan…he played 90 percent new songs and Bailey knew them…I was lost.

      • Which year was that? I think about 25% of his best songs are post 2000 releases, but that’s just me. I’d say with Cohen its about 40% in terms of my listening enjoyment.

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        It was 2016… I love his 60s and 70s probably the best but I do like his newer songs…it’s just he really ignored them that night…
        A few weeks later he played at a massive festival with McCartney, Stones, Who….and he played 90 percent older lol.

      • That’s recent!
        It was the same with what happened when I saw him in 2007 Melbourne. There was an older coworker at my job who said he was going to see Dylan that same night. I think I was 5 rows back on the first night and I saw him the second in the front row on the side anyways my coworker was disgusted by Dylan because he wasn’t the same singer he expected seeing from the 60′ and 70’s. He hadn’t done his homework in other words. haha

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        Oh never expect anything when I see Bob….I just go with the flow with him. The first 5 times I saw him…he played mostly older songs…the last 3…newer.

      • It seems better to go in with lower expectations or at least a mindset open to new interpretations. You have seen Bob way more than me! You’d know better than anyone which approach is most effective lol

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        I only saw one show that I didn’t like… it was 1989 and he only played 45 minutes and left…he probably got sick….the good part of that concert was Steve Earle…he was great.

      • Well, Dylan has never had a stellar reputation live haha But between 1989 and 1993 he was at his lowest in terms on public opinion in those years. Steve Earle I need to learn about.

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        I think you would like him Matt.

      • I know you have written about him. I’ll look him up.

      • I forgot to add since I mentioned it on Whatsapp with amigos. How about the drumming od Max Weinberg in ‘Lonesome Day’ at 2:25 in the video above? Wow

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        Max W is the man…he really is. He is one of the most talented drummers out there.

      • I can’t get enough of that piece like the ‘Bridge’ in ‘Countin’ on a Miracle’ which we wrote about. The structure of song of Countin’ is very complex, but he nailed it. The River also has a bridge which is just brilliant and I think we wrote about that too with respect to your post. Bruce knew how not to disengage audiences. haha

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        He also doesn’t talk down to his audience. He gives us a lot of credit…some artists dumb things down…well like a lot of pop music now.

      • There’s a scene at the beginning of ‘Lonesome Day’ where Bruce picks out a fan and just revels in his hysteria and adoration of Bruce. That’s something you don’t seen often. I think Bruce gives everything like it’s his last show. And there is great chemistry between the band. All those things don’t come around often.

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        Yea his shows he does give everything. When I saw them in 2000 they played for 4 hours. You get your money’s worth with Bruce.

      • 4 Hours wow! I’m not the littlest bit envious haha Do you remember what he finished on?

      • Badfinger (Max) says:

        You know…I do remember it being an odd choice. Ramrod….
        That was the last song he played in the last encore.

      • ‘Last encore’ hehe. He did that one in Barcelona as well. It was on his River album yeh? Nice.
        I bid you a goodnight Max and thanks for conversing. Cheers.

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