LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS

Album version

(Whoaaa whoa-whoaaa, this train)
(I'm calling this train)
(Don't you wanna ride)
(This train, this train)
(This train, this train)
(Whoa-whoa, get on, get on, get on, get on, get on)

Grab your ticket and your suitcase, thunder's rolling down this track
Well, you don't know where you're going now, but you know you won't be back
Well, darling, if you're weary, lay your head upon my chest
We'll take what we can carry, yeah, and we'll leave the rest

Well, big wheels roll through the fields where sunlight streams
Meet me in a land of hope and dreams

I will provide for you and I'll stand by your side
You'll need a good companion now for this part of the ride
Yeah, leave behind your sorrows, let this day be the last
Well, tomorrow there'll be sunshine and all this darkness past

Well, big wheels roll through fields where sunlight streams
Oh, meet me in a land of hope and dreams

Well, this train carries saints and sinners
This train carries losers and winners
This train carries whores and gamblers
This train carries lost souls

I said, this train, dreams will not be thwarted
This train, faith will be rewarded
This train, hear the steel wheels singing
This train, bells of freedom ringing

[Clarence Clemons sax solo]

Yes, this train carries saints and sinners
This train carries losers and winners
This train carries whores and gamblers
This train carries lost souls

I said, this train carries broken-hearted
This train, thieves and sweet souls departed
This train carries fools and kings thrown
This train, all aboard

I said, now this train, dreams will not be thwarted
This train, faith will be rewarded
This train, the steel wheels singing
This train, bells of freedom ringing

Come on this train
People get ready
You don't need no ticket
All you gotta do is
Just get onboard
Onboard this train (this train, now)
People get ready
You don't need no ticket (oh now, no you don't)
You don't need no ticket
You just get onboard (people get ready)
You just thank the Lord (people get ready)
You just thank the Lord (people get ready)
You just thank the Lord (people get ready)
(Come on this train, people get ready)
(Come on this train, people get ready) [fades]


Page last updated: 02 Mar 2014

Intro

Music and lyrics by Bruce Springsteen, LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS is the tenth track on his 2012 album, Wrecking Ball. The above lyrics are for Springsteen's studio version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS as released on Wrecking Ball.

The album version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS debuted on 01 Mar 2012, streaming on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon's website.

Composition and Recording

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was written in 1998 or early 1999, and debuted live with the E Street Band on 18 Mar 1999 in Asbury Park, NJ. In a December 2013 interview for Rolling Stone, Bruce Springsteen told Andy Greene that the song was "written for the E Street band when we got together in the late nineties."

A studio version was included on Springsteen's Wrecking Ball album. The song has been re-worked with electronic drums and a gospel choir. The line-up includes Bruce Springsteen, Ron Aniello, Charles Giordano (B-3 organ), Clarence Clemons (saxophone), Soozie Tyrell (violin and backing vocals), Patti Scialfa (backing vocals), Lisa Lowell (backing vocals), the Victorious Gospel Choir (backing vocals), and a horn section consisting from Curt Ramm (trumpet and/or cornet), Clark Gayton (trombone), Stan Harrison (clarinet, alto sax, and/or tenor sax), Ed Manion (tenor sax and/or baritone sax), Dan Levine (alto horn and/or euphonium), and Art Baron (euphonium and/or tuba). Steven Van Zandt is not credited on this track, but he sings background vocals and plays mandolin, as confirmed by Ron Aniello.

The song was recorded in the latter half of 2011, after the passing of Clarence Clemons. Ron Aniello got a couple of recorded Clemons saxophone performances. They were in a different key and a different tempo, so he tweaked them on the computer, but didn't reveal the result to Springsteen because of what he was going through after the passing of Clemons. Later, when they were mixing the song, Springsteen said that he wished they got Clarence performing on it, so Aniello told him about the saxophone recording he was working on. He added it to the track and it was a special moment for Springsteen when he heard it. "We were lucky to get him on 'Land Of Hope And Dreams'," Springsteen said of Clemons' presence on the track. "When he comes up, it's just a lovely moment for me."

In a 19 Dec 2013 interview that premiered on 10 Jan 2014 during Dave Marsh's Live From E Street Nation show on Sirius XM's E Street Radio channel, Bruce Springsteen explained that it's hard to record a song in studio after playing it live for a long time. "Very very hard to top any E Street Band live recordings of any of those songs," he said. "[LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS] took a good deal of the time we spent just trying to make it fresh enough to where it made sense to be on the record; change it rhythmically a little bit, but also to keep what the band brought to it, which is the enormous intensity and the power."

The studio version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS starts and ends with lines from The Impressions' PEOPLE GET READY, performed by the Victorious Gospel Choir.

For LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS, Springsteen adapted the mandolin solo from Joe Grushecky's LABOR OF LOVE, virtually note by note.

Wrecking Ball

Wrecking Ball is Bruce Springsteen's seventeenth studio album. It was produced by Ron Aniello with Bruce Springsteen and executive producer Jon Landau, and features special guest appearances from Tom Morello and Matt Chamberlain. The album features 11 new Springsteen recordings and a special edition includes two bonus tracks. All 13 tracks are Springsteen compositions, three of which have previously been released in live forms.

Before the album came together, Springsteen was originally working on a gospel record on which he spent on-and-off about a year. He had written about 30 to 40 songs, including WE TAKE CARE OF OUR OWN, SHACKLED AND DRAWN, and ROCKY GROUND. In a December 2013 interview for Rolling Stone, Ron Aniello told Andy Greene: "Those were about 30 or 40 songs. They were very unique for him, unlike anything I'd ever heard." Aniello later wanted to work on these songs, to help arrange them or give Springsteen ideas for a potential release, but instead he worked on what became High Hopes and none of those songs ended up on the 2014 album. "Those are lovely songs, but none of them are on this record." When asked how he would describe the sound of those songs, Aniello said, "I would compare them to Aaron Copland. It has a very open landscape feel and I guess... You wouldn't call it country. It's just very hard to describe. You'll just have to wait. I'm actually working on some of the songs now and going through them. He's looking for a way to approach that album." At the end of the interview, Aniello said that he doesn't know if any of those pre-Wrecking Ball songs are going to be released someday. "It's all up to Bruce. I know they're going on tour in January. Hopefully sometime in 2014 they'll be interested in hearing my record."

Then Springsteen decided to drop the project and started focusing on solo material. It was on 09 Jan 2011 that Ron Aniello first went to Colts Neck to help Springsteen finish arrangements for the project he was working on. After they had been working together for about a month, Springsteen wrote EASY MONEY which was a different style of song to what they've been working on before. As Aniello told to WCHR-FM's Tom Cunningham, "things just started steam rolling into this other record, you know, not sure what was going round in his mind." Springsteen was bringing in more songs, and it was evident that the direction of the music was changing. Jon Landau came in, listened to the music, and after a discussion with Springsteen they decided to do a new album. "Literally, this man bought in a new song every day. He just bulldozed us with these songs," Aniello explained.

Springsteen was coming in every morning with a new song and it would start with just him and his guitar. He would then sing a rhythm to Aniello, or sit down at the drums and play a beat. Aniello was looping these drum beats – no drum machines were used on Wrecking Ball – and adding other layers, like loops of percussion, also played by Springsteen. According to Aniello, this was done just for convenience because they were alone in studio, songs were coming in quick, and there were no other musicians there. The loops stayed, and other instruments were added at later stages. "Ron brought a large library of sound that allowed me to explore – like maybe a hip-hop drum loop or country-blues stomp loop," Springsteen told Rolling Stone in 2012. "The actual drums came later. There was no preconceived set of instruments that needed to be used, I could go anywhere, do anything, use anything. It was very wide open." Everybody who was around was participating in the recording. They even jumped on pieces of plywood, built some some risers to stomp on, and hit couches to makes noises.

Wrecking Ball was mainly recorded at Stone Hill Studio, Springsteen's home studio at his Colts Neck, NJ farm house. The album was released on Columbia Records on 05 Mar 2012 in the UK, 06 Mar 2012 in the United States, and 21 Mar 2012 in Japan.

[Click thumbnail to enlarge/reduce artwork]

Wrecking Ball was recorded with a large ensemble of musicians. There's a core of six musicians, while all others are just guest artists. Some E Street Band members appear on a few of the tracks. According to Ron Aniello, the album credits are "a mess" and will be revised in future reissues.

  • Bruce Springsteen (lead vocals, guitars, banjo, piano, organ, drums, percussion, and loops) appears on all the album's tracks.
  • Ron Aniello (guitar, bass, keyboards, drums, loops, percussion, hurdy gurdy, and backing vocals) appears on all of the album's tracks. He is also the album producer.
  • Matt Chamberlain (drums and percussion) appears on tracks 3, 5, and 8.
  • Max Weinberg (drums) is an E Street Band member and appears on tracks 7, 11, and 13.
  • Steve Jordan (percussion) has previously appeared on Springsteen's Devils & Dust, playing drums and percussion. He plays percussion on track 2.
  • Kevin Buell (drums and backing vocals) is Springsteen's guitar technician. He appears on track 5.
  • Charles Giordano (accordion, piano, B-3 organ, and celeste) recorded and toured with The Seeger Sessions Band and joined the E Street band in 2008. He appears on most of the album's tracks.
  • Marc Muller (pedal steel guitar) is a multi-instrumentalist who mainly plays string instruments. He plays pedal steel guitar on track 3.
  • Tom Morello (electric guitar) appears on tracks 4 and 6.
  • Greg Leisz (banjo, mandola, and lap steel) is a multi-instrumentalist, mainly playing lap and pedal steel guitars, guitar, mandolin, and bass. He appears on tracks 8 and 11.
  • Rob Lebert (electric guitar and backing vocals) appears on tracks 5, 7, 8, 12, and 13.
  • Darrell Leonard (trumpet and bass trumpet) is a Los Angeles based trumpet player, composer and arranger. He appears on track 11.
  • Curt Ramm (trumpet and cornet) toured with The Seeger Sessions Band. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, and 10.
  • Clark Gayton (trombone) toured with The Seeger Sessions Band. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 8, 9, and 10.
  • Stan Harrison (clarinet, alto sax, and tenor sax) has previously appeared on Springsteen's The Promise, playing tenor saxophone. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 8, 9, and 10.
  • Ed Manion (tenor sax and baritone sax) is a member of The Miami Horns and he toured with the E Street band in 1988 and recorded and toured with The Seeger Sessions Band. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 8, 9, and 10.
  • Dan Levine (alto horn and euphonium) is a New York City based musician who plays several horn instruments in studios and live. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 9, and 10.
  • Art Baron (euphonium, tuba, sousaphone, and penny whistle) recorded and toured with The Seeger Sessions Band. He appears on tracks 3, 4, 5, 9, and 10.
  • Clarence Clemons (saxophone) was an E Street Band member and appears on tracks 7 and 10.
  • Soozie Tyrell (violin and backing vocals) started touring with the E Street band in 2002 and toured with The Seeger Sessions Band in 2006. She appears on most of the album's tracks.
  • Patti Scialfa (backing vocals and vocal arrangements) is Springsteen's wife and a member of the E Street Band since 1984. She appears on most of the album's tracks.
  • Lisa Lowell (backing vocals) has been singing backup vocals on several Springsteen albums since 1992 and recorded and toured with The Seeger Sessions Band. She appears on tracks 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 10, and 12.
  • Cindy Mizelle (background vocals) toured with The Seeger Sessions Band and the E Street Band in 2009. She appears on track 3.
  • Ross Peterson (backing vocals) appears on tracks 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, and 13.
  • Cliff Norrell (tuba and backing vocals) is the album's engineer. He appears on tracks 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, and 13.
  • New York String Section (strings), also known as the New York Chamber Consort, consists of Rob Mathes (orchestration), Sandy Park (string contractor), Lisa Kim (concertmaster), Myumju Lee (violin), Ann Lehmaan (violin), Lizz Lim (violin), Johanna Marher (violin), Annaliesa Place (violin), Fiona Simon (violin), Sharon Yamada (violin), Jung Sun Yu (violin), Karen Dreyfus (viola), Daniel Panner (viola), Robert Rinehart (viola), Mina Smith (cello), and Alan Stepansky (cello). It appears on tracks 1, 4, and 7.
  • Victorious Gospel Choir (backing vocals) has previously appeared on Springsteen's The Rising. On Wrecking Ball, the choir includes Michelle Moore, Antoinette Savage, Corinda Carford, Tiffeny Andrews, Soloman Cobbs, and Lillie Brown. It appears on tracks 2, 9, and 10. Michelle Moore is credited separately on the three tracks. The remaining singers are credited individually on track 2, and as the Victorious Gospel Choir on tracks 9 and 10.
  • Jeremy McCoy (bass violin) is a bass guitar player. He appears on track 12.
  • Dan Shelly (bassoon) is an orchestra bassoon player. He appears on track 12.
  • Mark Romatz (contra bassoon) is an orchestra bassoon player. He appears on track 12.
  • Steven Van Zandt (mandolin and backing vocals) is an E Street Band member. He appears on tracks 7, 10, and 13.

Wrecking Ball is available in three configurations: standard CD edition, special CD edition, and double-disc LP. The special CD edition features two bonus tracks and exclusive packaging. The double-disc LP is pressed on 180-gram vinyl and includes a CD version of the album.

Wrecking Ball track list:

  1. WE TAKE CARE OF OUR OWN
  2. EASY MONEY
  3. SHACKLED AND DRAWN
  4. JACK OF ALL TRADES
  5. DEATH TO MY HOMETOWN
  6. THIS DEPRESSION
  7. WRECKING BALL
  8. YOU'VE GOT IT
  9. ROCKY GROUND
  10. LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS
  11. WE ARE ALIVE
  12. SWALLOWED UP (IN THE BELLY OF THE WHALE) [bonus track]
  13. AMERICAN LAND [bonus track]

The album topped the charts in 16 countries, including the United States and the UK.

[Click here to display/hide list of countries in which the album charted]

Other Official Releases

Other versions of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS were also officially released:


The live 01 Jul 2000 version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was officially released on the Live In New York City album and home video in 2001.

The live 16 Oct 2002 version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was officially released on the Live In Barcelona home video in 2003.

The live 12 Dec 2012 version of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was officially released on the 12-12-12: The Concert For Sandy Relief album and home video in 2013.

Live History

In preparation for The Reunion Tour, LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed during both of the tour's two public warm-up rehearsal shows that took place in March 1999 in Asbury Park. The song is also known to have been practiced during at least one of the private rehearsals that took place in March 2009 in Asbury Park prior to the tour's first leg, and during the private rehearsal that took place in April 1999 in Barcelona the day before the tour kicked off in Spain.

[Click here to display/hide detailed The Reunion Tour rehearsals performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 132 times during the 132-date-long The Reunion Tour; that is each and every one of the tour's regular dates. The 01 Jul 2000 performance of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was officially released in 2001 on the Live In New York City album and home video. See the live 01 Jul 2000 version for more details.

[Click here to display/hide detailed The Reunion Tour performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 18 Aug 2001 at the beachfront in Asbury Park, NJ, during the 26th annual Clearwater Festival. This was the first-ever acoustic version of the song.

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 18 and 19 Oct 2001 at Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, NJ, during the "The Alliance Of Neighbors Concerts". These shows were fundraisers for the families from Monmouth County, NJ, that were affected by the 9/11 tragedy. The 19 Oct 2001 show was broadcast on cable television.

[Click here to display/hide detailed 2001 off-tour performances list]

In preparation for The Rising Tour, LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed during 4 of the tour's five public warm-up rehearsal shows that took place in July and August 2002 in Asbury Park and East Rutherford. The song is also known to have been practiced during at least one of the private rehearsals that took place in July 2002 in Fort Monmouth and Asbury Park prior to the tour's first leg.

[Click here to display/hide detailed The Rising Tour rehearsals performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 113 times during the 120-date-long The Rising Tour, missing only 7 dates in the last month of the tour. On this tour, the song featured lines from The Impressions' PEOPLE GET READY. The complete 16 Oct 2002 concert at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain, was released on the Live In Barcelona DVD in 2003. See the live 16 Oct 2002 version for more details.

[Click here to display/hide detailed The Rising Tour performances list]

In preparation for the Vote For Change Tour, LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS is known to have been practiced during one of the tour's three private rehearsals that took place from 27 to 29 Sep 2004 in Asbury Park.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Vote For Change Tour rehearsals performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 02 Dec 2004 at Heinz Hall in Pittsburgh, PA, during the "Flood Aid '04" benefit concert. The song was played solo on acoustic guitar.

[Click here to display/hide detailed 2004 off-tour performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 23 times during the Devils & Dust Solo Acoustic Tour.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Devils & Dust Solo Acoustic Tour performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 3 times during The Seeger Sessions Tour.

[Click here to display/hide detailed The Seeger Sessions Tour performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was sound-checked prior to the 14 Jun 2008 show in Cardiff, Wales, (as far as it's known) but it was not performed on any of the Magic Tour's regular shows.

In preparation for the Working On A Dream Tour, LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed during one of the tour's two public warm-up rehearsal shows that took place in March 2009 in Asbury Park.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Working On A Dream Tour rehearsals performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 41 times during the 83-date-long Working On A Dream Tour, including the 36 first consecutive dates. On this tour, the song featured lines from The Impressions' PEOPLE GET READY.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Working On A Dream Tour performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 03 Nov 2011 at Soldiers And Sailors Memorial Hall in Pittsburgh, PA, when Bruce Springsteen appeared at Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers concerts. The song was played solo acoustic.

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 09 Mar 2012 at Apollo Theater in New York City, NY, during the Sirius Satellite Radio 10-year anniversary celebration. The song was played with the E Street Band. See the live 09 Mar 2012 version for more details.

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed off-tour on 15 Mar 2012 at Moody Theater in Austin, TX, during an intimate concert following Bruce Springsteen's keynote speech at the South By Southwest music festival. The song was played with the E Street Band.

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed on 02 Nov 2012 at Rockefeller Center in New York City, NY, during the NBC Telethon "Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together". The song was played in abbreviated version and featuring lines from The Impressions' PEOPLE GET READY.

[Click here to display/hide detailed 2011 and 2012 off-tour performances list]

Since 2007 Springsteen has been playing the annual Stand Up for Heroes benefit shows. LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed during the fifth (2011) and sixth (2012) annual benefits. The song was played solo acoustic.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Stand Up For Heroes benefit shows performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 85 times during the 133-date-long Wrecking Ball Tour.

[Click here to display/hide detailed Wrecking Ball Tour performances list]

Bruce Springsteen performed on seven election rallies for U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama in 2012. LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed during the last three of the seven rallies. The song was played solo acoustic.

[Click here to display/hide detailed 2012 election rallies performances list]

LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed on 12 Dec 2012 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY, during the "12-12-12: The Concert For Sandy Relief" benefit. The song was played in a full-band arrangement and featuring lines from The Impressions' PEOPLE GET READY. This live 12 Dec 2012 performance of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was officially released on the 12 12 12: The Concert For Sandy Relief album and home video in 2013. See the live 12 Dec 2012 version for more details.

[Click here to display/hide detailed 2012 off-tour performances list]

(By the time this page was last updated,) LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was performed 8 times during the High Hopes Tour.

[Click here to display/hide detailed High Hopes Tour performances list]

Covers

A few artists have recorded and released Bruce Springsteen's LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS, including:


Jorcx -- Històries Alienes

CD - no label (no catalogue number) - Spain, 2001

Various artists -- The Next Paradigm

CD - InterTerra New Media (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2008

This is a various artists album that accompanies the book of the same name. LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS is performed by Aaron And Andrew.

Tom Brooksby -- Brooksby Does Bruce

CD - unknown label (unknown catalogue number) - UK, 2009

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Various artists -- For You 2: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

2-CD - Route 66 Music (DTCDA005-2) - Italy, 2010

This is a various artists Bruce Springsteen tribute album. LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS is performed by Mardi Gras. The song was also included on Mardi Gras' 2011 album Among The Streams.

The Hit Co. -- Long Live The Boss: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen Vol. 3 1990-2009

Digital album - Planet Music (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2010

This is a download-only digital Bruce Springsteen tribute album. The Hit Co.'s cover of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS was also included in 2012 on their download-only digital Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp tribute album Working Class Heroes: A Tribute to Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp, Vol. 2.

The Boss Band -- The Ultimate Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

Digital album - Big Eye Music (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2011

This is a download-only digital Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Déjà Vu -- Tribute To Working Class Hero Bruce Springsteen, Vol. 2

Digital album - Zulu (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2012

This is a download-only digital Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Catch This Beat -- Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

Digital album - Talking Clive (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2012

This is a download-only digital Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Jimmy LaFave -- Depending On The Distance

CD - Music Road Records (unknown catalogue number) - USA, 2012

Martyn Joseph -- Tires Rushing By In The Rain

CD - Pipe Records (unknown catalogue number) - UK, 2013

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

Available Versions

List of available versions of LAND OF HOPE AND DREAMS on this website:

Credits

Thanks Johan for the lyrics correction.

Request

If you have any corrections or additional info, please contact me via the below form or by email: . You will be credited. Thanks in advance.

Subject:
Name and location:
This is how you will be credited, unless you specify differently in the message body.
E-mail address:
Please provide your email if you expect a response. It will not be disclosed to a third party.
Comments or message:
(required)
(plain text only, no tags)
Verification:

Please prove that you are not a robot spammer by typing the word that
appears in the graphic on the left into the box beneath it.