BADLANDS

Album version


Lights out tonight, trouble in the heartland
Got a head-on collision smashin' in my guts man
I'm caught in a crossfire that I don't understand
But there's one thing I know for sure
Girl, I don't give a damn for the same old played out scenes
Baby, I don't give a damn for just the in-betweens
Honey, I want the heart, I want the soul,
I want control right now
You better listen to me baby, talk about a dream, try to make it real
You wake up in the night with a fear so real
You spend your life waiting for a moment that just don't come
Well don't waste your time waiting

Badlands, you gotta live it every day
Let the broken hearts stand as the price you've gotta pay
We'll keep pushin' till it's understood
And these badlands start treating us good

Workin' in the field till you get your back burned
Workin' 'neath the wheels till you get your facts learned
Baby, I got my facts learned real good right now
You better get it straight, darling
Poor man wanna be rich, rich man wanna be king
And a king ain't satisfied till he rules everything
I wanna go out tonight, I wanna find out what I got
Well I believe in the love that you gave me
I believe in the faith that could save me
I believe in the hope and I pray that some day it may raise me above these

Badlands, you gotta live it every day
Let the broken hearts stand as the price you've gotta pay
Keep pushin' till it's understood
And these badlands start treating us good
Awhoa whoa whoa whoa

[guitar instrumental]
[saxophone instrumental]

Mmmmmmmmm
Mmmmmmmmm
Mmmmmmmmm
Mmmmmmmmm
For the ones who had a notion, a notion deep inside
That it ain't no sin to be glad you're alive
I wanna find one face that ain't looking through me
I wanna find one place, I wanna spit in the face of these

Badlands, you gotta live it every day
Let the broken hearts stand as the price you've gotta pay
Keep movin' till it's understood
And these badlands start treating us good
Awhoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands, awhoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands, awhoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands, ahwoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands, ahwoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands, ahwoa whoa whoa whoa
Badlands...
[till fade]


PAGE UNDER CONSTRUCTION

Info

BADLANDS is a song written by Bruce Springsteen and released on his 1978 album Darkness On The Edge Of Town. The song was also the album's single. The above lyrics are for Bruce Springsteen's album version of BADLANDS as released in 1978.

The album version of BADLANDS was included on the Greatest Hits (1995 edition) compilation album, The Essential Bruce Springsteen (both 2003 and 2015 editions) compilation album, the Greatest Hits (2009 editions) compilation album, and the Collection: 1973-2012 compilation album.

Composition and Recording

COMING SOON

Circulating Studio Versions

COMING SOON

Darkness On The Edge Of Town

Despite the marvelous reception received by both Born To Run and the tour which followed, the relationship between Bruce Springsteen and his now former manager and producer Mike Appel was deteriorating. In July 1976 the storm broke; Mike Appel wrote to Springsteen saying that he would not allow Jon Landau (Springsteen's friend and co-producer of Born To Run) to produce the next album, citing a particular paragraph from their original agreement. Bruce replied on 27 Jul 1976 by firing manager Mike Appel and suing him and his management company Laurel Canyon Ltd. in Federal Court in Manhattan, claiming fraud, breach of trust, and undue influence. Appel countersued on 29 Jul 1976 in New York State Supreme Court, asking the court to prohibit Springsteen and Jon Landau from working together in studio. Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band were slated to enter the studio that year for the recording of a new album, except that on 15 Sep 1976 the judge in the lawsuits case ruled that Springsteen was enjoined from any further recording with Columbia Records until Appel's suit was resolved. This would drag for about a year.

Meanwhile, Springsteen continued gigging, and in the process broke his self-imposed rule of not playing the larger arenas. This was basically because he was not able to put a record out, and it was the only way his fans would be able to hear him at all.

Springsteen reached a final settlement in his yearlong litigation with Mike Appel on 28 May 1977. Effectively this meant that for the first time in a year Springsteen was able to go into a studio and record. The Darkness On The Edge Of Town recording sessions kicked off in early June 1977 at Atlantic Record Studios, New York City, NY. Springsteen had a considerable amount of new material, but the songs were in various stages of writing completion. Consequently many of the songs were shaped over the course of numerous sessions spanning several months.

The sessions at Atlantic Studios were only two or three weeks old when problems surfaced. Springsteen didn't like the sound he was getting from the studio, particularly the drums. On top of that Atlantic Studios did not offer a particularly comfortable or livable environment for the musicians. A decision was taken to shift operations to the nearby Record Plant where most of the Born To Run album had been recorded. However financial commitments to Atlantic Studios were already made, and on such short notice it was hard to find un-booked studio time at the popular Record Plant. Consequently the Jul-Aug 1977 period saw Springsteen and the band recording at both studios, but mostly Atlantic Studios. From September to late December, all the recording seems to have taken place at The Record Plant, where all the recordings issued on the original album emanate from.

The actual recording sessions for Darkness On The Edge Of Town were completed by early January 1978. The mixing sessions began in early January 1978 and dragged on until late March. There was a tremendous amount of different mixes considered, with Springsteen changing his mind on the mix of THE PROMISED LAND as late as early April.

Darkness On The Edge Of Town was released on Columbia Records on 02 Jun 1978. It was produced by Bruce Springsteen and Jon Landau.

Bruce Springsteen -- Darkness On The Edge Of Town
Bruce Springsteen -- Darkness On The Edge Of Town

The album features 10 new Springsteen compositions and clocks at 42:55.

Greatest Hits 1995 Edition

Greatest Hits (1995 edition) is Bruce Springsteen's first compilation album. It's a collection of some of his hit singles and popular album tracks through the years, in addition to four previously unreleased songs, three of which were recorded with the E Street Band in 1995 – Springsteen's first release with his backing band since the late eighties. Some of the songs on Greatest Hits are shorter versions of the original album releases.

In 1994 Bruce Springsteen recorded an album that was never released. His manager Jon Landau wasn't a fan of the project and recommended shelving it and focusing more on a "career overview". This lead to the Greatest Hits sessions with the E Street Band in 1995. Springsteen called the band in early January to record some new songs for the album and they assembled for the recording sessions on 09 Jan 1995 at The Hit Factory in New York City, NY. The sessions, which lasted about ten days, were the band's first studio reunion in 11 years (since the Born In The U.S.A. sessions) and their first ever with Nils Lofgren.

Bruce Springsteen -- Greatest Hits
Bruce Springsteen -- Greatest Hits

Greatest Hits was released on 27 Feb 1995 on Columbia Records. It was commercially successful, debuting at #1 on the U.S. Billboard 200 where it stayed on the chart for 32 weeks. It also peaked at #1 in Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and many European countries. By 2008 the album had sold more than four million copies in the United States.

The Essential Bruce Springsteen

The Essential Bruce Springsteen is a compilation album released as part of Sony BMG'S (previously Sony Music Entertainment) series of "Essential" sets. According to Springsteen's liner notes comments, the collection was intended as an introduction to his music for new fans who attended shows on The Rising Tour.

The collection is fundamentally a 2-disc set (clocking at 153:37) compiling songs from all of Springsteen's studio albums to date plus his Live In New York City release. A 3-disc limited edition (clocking at 201:04) was also released. It includes a bonus third disc comprising of a selection of rarities and previously unreleased recordings.

The Essential Bruce Springsteen was released on 11 Nov 2003 on Columbia Records. It debuted and peaked at #14 on the U.S. Billboard 200 album chart where it spent 13 weeks. It also reached #28 on the UK Albums Chart. The album was awarded certified gold and platinum records by the RIAA on 16 Dec 2003.

Bruce Springsteen -- The Essential Bruce Springsteen (2003 edition)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Essential Bruce Springsteen (2003 edition)

The Essential Bruce Springsteen was reissued on 16 Oct 2015, this time as a 2-disc set (clocking at 156:25) with an updated track list, compiling songs from all of Springsteen's studio albums to date plus his Greatest Hits (1995 edition) collection. This 2015 reissue features remastered tracks not found in that form on other Springsteen releases.

Bruce Springsteen -- The Essential Bruce Springsteen (2015 edition)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Essential Bruce Springsteen (2015 edition)

Greatest Hits 2009 Edition

Greatest Hits (2009 edition) is a compilation album released by Columbia Records on 13 Jan 2009 in the United State where it was sold exclusively through Wal-Mart retailers. The album was also released (but non-exclusively) in Canada. Unlike the 1995 Greatest Hits release and The Essential Bruce Springsteen in 2003, this compilation was billed to "Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band" instead of just "Bruce Springsteen". The album contains 12 previously released studio tracks and clocks at 53:08.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Greatest Hits (2009 USA edition cover art)
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Greatest Hits (2009 USA edition cover art)

On 01 Jun 2009, Columbia Records released a European edition of the compilation album with an alternative track listing to promote Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band's European leg of the Working On A Dream Tour. The European edition was also released in Israel and Mexico, and in Australia in August 2009. The album comes in a standard jewel case, but a limited digipack edition was also released in Europe. Greatest Hits (2009 European edition) contains 16 previously released studio tracks and 2 live bonus tracks taken from the Live/1975-85 box set. It clocks at 79:03.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Greatest Hits (2009 Europe edition cover art)
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Greatest Hits (2009 Europe edition cover art)

The album charted in several countries, but only made it to # 1 in Sweden. In general, the album did much better in Europe than in North America.

Collection: 1973-2012

Collection: 1973-2012 is a Bruce Springsteen compilation album released on Columbia Records in 2013. It was released on 08 Mar 2013 in Australia and 15 Apr 2013 in Europe. The compilation was not released commercially in the United States. Instead, a promotional version was given out exclusively to $1,500 ticket holders at the "MusiCares Person Of The Year" tribute event held in Los Angeles, CA, on 08 Feb 2013. The event honoured Springsteen for both his artistic achievements and philanthropic efforts. The compilation consists of 18 previously released studio tracks.

Bruce Springsteen -- Collection: 1973-2012 (album cover art)
Bruce Springsteen -- Collection: 1973-2012 (album cover art)

Other Official Releases

COMING SOON

BADLANDS was appears on some various artists releases.

Various artists -- Super Disco Sound
Various artists -- Super Disco Sound

CD - CBS/Sony (YAPN 23) - Japan, 1978

Promotional album.
Various artist -- Nice Price Retail Sampler (album cover art)
Various artist -- Nice Price Retail Sampler

LP - CBS (NICEONE) - Australia, 1988
CD - CBS (NICEONECD) - Australia, 1988

Australia-only sampler promoting the CBS "Nice Price" album catalogue. It contains an edited version of BADLANDS clocking at 3:12 – the last verse is edited out and the song fades out during Springsteen's "humming" part.
Various artist -- Quality At A Nice Price (album cover art)
Various artist -- Quality At A Nice Price

LP - CBS (NICE1) - Australia, 1988

Consisting of the same tracks as the above sampler, this promotional release was given away exclusively as a competition prize by domestic magazine "TV Week".

Other versions of BADLANDS were also officially released.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- The Agora, Cleveland 1978
The live 09 Aug 1978 version of BADLANDS was released on The Agora, Cleveland 1978 official live download in 2014.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Live/1975-85
The live 05 Nov 1980 version of BADLANDS was first released on the Live/1975-85 box set in 1986.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Nassau Coliseum, New York 1980
The live 31 Dec 1980 version of BADLANDS was released on the Nassau Coliseum, New York 1980 official live download in 2015.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Brendan Byrne Arena, New Jersey 1984
The live 05 Aug 1984 version of BADLANDS was released on the Brendan Byrne Arena, New Jersey 1984 official live download in 2015.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Apollo Theater 03/09/12
The live 09 Mar 2012 version of BADLANDS was released on the Apollo Theater 03/09/12 official live download in 2014.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band -- Ippodromo Delle Capannelle, Rome 2013
The live 11 Jul 2013 version of BADLANDS was released on the Ippodromo Delle Capannelle, Rome 2013 official live download in 2015.

Live History: on-tour

COMING SOON

Live History: off-tour

COMING SOON

Appearance in Movies

COMING SOON

Promotional poster for the film "Mask"
It was used in the 1985 film Mask, directed by Peter Bogdanovich and starring Cher, Sam Elliott, and Eric Stoltz. The song was not included in the film's soundtrack album.

The movie originally featured extensive use of Springsteen's music in the soundtrack, including: BADLANDS, THUNDER ROAD, THE PROMISED LAND, THE RIVER, and BORN IN THE U.S.A.. The music was used to set a timeline for the story, and Springsteen is a favorite of Roy "Rocky" Dennis, about whom the story is based. By the time the movie was released to theaters, the Springsteen element had to be stripped down (against the director's will) and replaced by Bob Seger songs. A new director's cut was released on DVD from Universal Studios in September 2004, and is seven minutes longer with the original Bruce Springsteen songs score restored. "Now it exists in the form it should have been 20 years ago," Bogdanovich told ESPN. "I think you'll find it a much better picture." Bogdanovich also discusses the Springsteen element in a commentary track on the DVD.

Covers

COMING SOON

Session musicians featuring David West -- Pickin' On Springsteen Volume 2
Session musicians featuring David West -- Pickin' On Springsteen Volume 2

CD - CMH (CD-8463) - USA, 2003

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.
Various artists -- Light Of Day: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen
Various artists -- Light Of Day: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

2-CD - Schoolhouse Records (SHR0022-2) - USA, 2003
3-CD - Good Sounds (DM 797-02) - Spain, 2003
2-CD - Good Sounds (DM 797E-02) - Spain, 2003
2-CD - Revolver (REVXD 244) - UK, 2005
2-CD - Sony (MHCP-928/9) - Japan, 2005
2-CD - Sony Records (MHCO 928-929) - Japan, 2007

This is a various artists Bruce Springsteen tribute album. BADLANDS is performed by Joe D'Urso & Stone Caravan. There are six issues of this album (with three track configurations) and this track was included on all six issues listed above.
Various artists -- Play Some Pool, Skip Some School, Act Real Cool: A Global Pop Tribute To Bruce Springsteen
Various artists -- Play Some Pool, Skip Some School, Act Real Cool: A Global Pop Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

2-CD - Where It's At Is Where You Are (WIACD20) - UK, 2009

This is a various artists Bruce Springsteen tribute album. BADLANDS is performed by Boy Genius.
Martyn Joseph -- Tires Rushing By In The Rain
Martyn Joseph -- Tires Rushing By In The Rain

CD - Pipe Records (PRCD023) - UK, 2013

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.
Various artists -- Rock Made In USA
Various artists -- Rock Made In USA

Digital album - Open Records (unknown catalog number) - unknown country, 2014

This is a download-only digital album. 13 of the 20 tracks are covers of Bruce Springsteen songs. BADLANDS is performed by Larry Jones.
Moa Holmsten -- Bruised Arms & Broken Rhythm
Moa Holmsten -- Bruised Arms & Broken Rhythm

CD - Fill In The Blank Records (no catalog number) - USA, 2015

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Credits / References

Thanks Mark Bahlen for the Nice Price Retail Sampler scan and information.

Some of the above info about the studio recording and the live performances is taken from Brucebase. Scans and info for the some of the above official Springsteen releases are taken from the Lost In The Flood website.

Available Versions

List of available versions of BADLANDS on this website:

BADLANDS [Album version]
BADLANDS [Outtake version #1]
BADLANDS [Outtake version #2]
BADLANDS [Instrumental take]
BADLANDS [Live 09 Mar 2012 version]

Page last updated: 10 Jan 2016