Great Britain, Ireland, and Denmark enter European Economic Community (Jan. 1)
A ceasefire is signed, ending involvement of American ground troops in the Vietnam War. (Jan. 28)
US bombing of Cambodia ends, marking official halt to 12 years of combat activity in Southeast Asia (Aug. 15)
Fourth and largest Arab-Israeli conflict begins when Egyptian and Syrian forces attack Israel as Jews mark Yom Kippur, holiest day in their calendar (Oct. 6). Egypt and Israel sign US-sponsored cease-fire accord (Nov. 11). Background: Arab-Israeli Wars
Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) hikes oil prices tremendously in retaliation for Western countries’ involvement in Yom Kippur War.
Racing in the Street is a ballad written by Bruce Springsteen, it was originally released on his album Darkness on the Edge of Town (1978). The song has been referred to as Springsteen’s best song by a number of commentators. I think it’s a great song, and some nights it’s my favourite Bruce Springsteen song.
Darkness on the Edge of Town version:
“…And “Racing in the Streets” is still perhaps the best Springsteen song ever.” – Rolling Stone magazine
Like so many times, before and since, the car is a symbol of freedom in Springsteen’s universe. Driving a car gives you the ultimate feeling of freedom in this world.
The song begins with two friends fixing up an old car. The story is made believable through Bruce’s attention to detail, he seems to know what he is talking about, “I got a ’69 Chevy with a 396, Fuelie heads and a Hurst on the floor”. The two friends needs the car to go racing, to earn money from street racing. As the story is told, they go from town to town and win easy money. They’re like cowboys in the old west, riding where the work is, no strings attached.
Live version from The Darkness Box, 2010, Racing in the street (-78),”Songs from The Promise”:
The protagonist/the racer and his friend Sonny hasn’t stopped living, even if they have ordinary day jobs. They come home from work, get cleaned up and starts living, they go racing in the streets.
Remarkable show played in remarkable weather. The rain begins to pour down during the full band “The River” and continues for several songs, punctuated with incredible thunder and lightning. A unique “Follow That Dream”. Many other highlights – an Italian story in “Growin’ Up”, the rain sheeting down in “Waitin’ On A Sunny Day”, “The River” and an impromptu “Who’ll Stop The Rain”. Jon Landau plays guitar on “Dancing In The Dark”. First ever performance in Italy of “Follow That Dream”. “Born In The U.S.A.” from the soundcheck is solo acoustic. Released on “Once Upon a Time in Italy” and “San Siro Night” (Crystal Cat). Several DVDs available, including the excellent screenshot “Blood Brothers On A Stormy Night” (brucevideos), plus many others. ~brucebase
Imperceptible though the movement has been to many sensitive young people, Springsteen has evolved. In fact, this apparent retrenchment is his most rhythmically propulsive, vocally incisive, lyrically balanced, and commercially undeniable album. Even his compulsive studio habits work for him: the aural vibrancy of the thing reminds me like nothing in years that what teenagers loved about rock and roll wasn’t that it was catchy or even vibrant but that it just plain sounded good.
-Robert Christgau (robertchristgau.com)
But more than anything else, Born in the U.S.A. marked the first time that Springsteen’s characters really seemed to relish the fight and to have something to fight for. They were not defeated (“No Surrender”), and they had friendship (“Bobby Jean”) and family (“My Hometown”) to defend. The restless hero of “Dancing in the Dark” even pledged himself in the face of futility, and for Springsteen, that was a step. The “romantic young boys” of his first two albums, chastened by “the working life” encountered on his third, fourth, and fifth albums and having faced the despair of his sixth, were still alive on this, his seventh, with their sense of humor and their determination intact. Born in the U.S.A.was their apotheosis, the place where they renewed their commitment and where Springsteen remembered that he was a rock & roll star, which is how a vastly increased public was happy to treat him.
-William Ruhlmann (allmusic.com)
Born down in a dead mans town
The first kick I took was when I hit the ground
End up like a dog that’s been beat too much
Till you spend half your life just covering up
Born in the U.S.A., I was born in the U.S.A.
I was born in the U.S.A., born in the U.S.A.
Being generous of spirit is a wonderful way to live.
– Pete Seeger
He’s a great man, Pete Seeger.
-Bob Dylan (Paul Zollo interview April, 1991)
Harry Belafonte and Arlo Guthrie induct Pete Seeger into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame during the 1996 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony:
Pete Seeger & Bruce Springsteen – This Land is Your Land – Obama Inauguration (2009)
As Pete and I traveled to Washington for President Obama’s Inaugural Celebration, he told me the entire story of “We Shall Overcome.” How it moved from a labor movement song, and with Pete’s inspiration, had been adapted by the civil rights movement. That day as we sang “This Land Is Your Land,” I looked at Pete, the first black president of the United States was seated to his right, and I thought of the incredible journey that Pete had taken. My own growing up in the Sixties in towns scarred by race rioting made that moment nearly unbelievable, and Pete had 30 extra years of struggle and real activism on his belt. He was so happy that day. It was like, “Pete, you outlasted the bastards, man!” It was so nice. At rehearsals the day before, it was freezing, like 15 degrees, and Pete was there. He had his flannel shirt on. I said, man, you better wear something besides that flannel shirt! He says, yeah, I got my longjohns on under this thing.