Blinded by the Light

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"Blinded by the Light"
BS BBTL.jpg
Single by Bruce Springsteen
from the album Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.
B-side"The Angel"
ReleasedFebruary 1973
RecordedAugust–September 1972
914 Sound Studios, Blauvelt, New York
GenreRock
Length5:06
LabelColumbia
Songwriter(s)Bruce Springsteen
Producer(s)Mike Appel, Jim Cretecos
Bruce Springsteen singles chronology
"Blinded by the Light"
(1973)
"Spirit in the Night"
(1973)
Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. track listing
Side one
  1. "Blinded by the Light"
  2. "Growin' Up"
  3. "Mary Queen of Arkansas"
  4. "Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?"
  5. "Lost in the Flood"

Side two

  1. "The Angel"
  2. "For You"
  3. "Spirit in the Night"
  4. "It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City"
"Blinded by the Light"
BlindedbytheLightSingle.jpg
Single by Manfred Mann's Earth Band
from the album The Roaring Silence
B-side"Starbird No. 2"
ReleasedAugust 6, 1976
Format7"
Recorded1976, Workhouse Studios, London
Genre
Length7:08 (album version)
3:48 (single version)
LabelBronze Records
Songwriter(s)Bruce Springsteen
Producer(s)Manfred Mann and Earth Band
Manfred Mann's Earth Band singles chronology
"Spirits in the Night"
(1975)
"Blinded by the Light"
(1976)
"Questions"
(1976)
Audio sample

"Blinded by the Light" is a song written and recorded by Bruce Springsteen, which first appeared on his 1973 debut album Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. A cover by British rock band Manfred Mann's Earth Band reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States in February 1977 and was also a top ten hit in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Canada. It has also been covered by The Eagles of Death Metal which was in the movie Super Troopers 2.

History[edit]

The song came about when Columbia president Clive Davis, upon listening to an early version of Greetings from Asbury Park N.J., felt the album lacked a potential single. Springsteen wrote this and "Spirit in the Night" in response.

According to Springsteen, the song came about from going through a rhyming dictionary in search of appropriate words. The first line of the song, "Madman drummers, bummers, and Indians in the summers with a teenage diplomat" is autobiographical—"Madman drummers" is a reference to drummer Vini Lopez, known as "Mad Man" (later changed to "Mad Dog"); "Indians in the summer" refers to the name of Springsteen's old Little League team; "teenage diplomat" refers to himself.[1] The remainder of the song tells of many unrelated events, with the refrain of "Blinded by the light, cut loose like a deuce, another runner in the night."

"Blinded by the Light" was the first song on, and first single from, Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. Springsteen's version was commercially unsuccessful and did not appear on the music charts.

Cover versions and reissues[edit]

Manfred Mann's Earth Band released a version of the song on their 1976 album The Roaring Silence. Their version includes the "Chopsticks" melody played on piano near the end of the bridge of the song. The track reached #1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and the Canadian RPM charts. Manfred Mann's Earth Band's recording of "Blinded by the Light" is Springsteen's only #1 single as a songwriter on the Hot 100 (he never had a #1 as a performer except as part of USA for Africa).

In 2002, Danish act Funkstar De Luxe released its disco version of this song. A "jazzified" version can be found on Springsteen's 2007 video and audio release Live in Dublin, recorded with The Sessions Band.

Lyrics[edit]

Manfred Mann's Earth Band's recording of the song changes the lyrics. The most prominent change is in the chorus, where Springsteen's "cut loose like a deuce" is replaced with "revved up like a deuce."[2][3][a] This is commonly misheard as "wrapped up like a douche", a well-known mondegreen.[4][5] The lyric is actually a reference to a hot rod "deuce coupe." Springsteen was fond of classic hot rods in his youth, hence the line "cut loose like a deuce, another runner in the night." Springsteen himself has joked about the controversy, claiming that it was not until Manfred Mann rewrote the song to be about a feminine hygiene product that it became popular.[1]

Personnel[edit]

Original version

with

Manfred Mann's Earth Band cover

with

Chart performance[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The word "deuce," in both the Springsteen and Earth Band versions, refers to a 1932 model Ford.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Bruce Springsteen". VH1 Storytellers. Episode 62. April 23, 2005. VH1.
  2. ^ Buzzelli, Mike (April 26, 2010). "Revved up like a deuce, another runner in the night". Observer-Reporter. Archived from the original on June 2, 2010. Retrieved August 8, 2010.
  3. ^ "VH1 Storytellers: Bruce Springsteen". Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved August 8, 2010.
  4. ^ "Manfred Mann's Earth Band : Blinded by the Light : Real Lyric: Blinded by the light, revved up like a deuce, another runner in the night : Misheard: Blinded by the light, wrapped up like a douche". Kissthisguy.com. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  5. ^ "Q: "Blinded By the Light, Revved Up Like a…" What?". Blogcritics.org. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  6. ^ "Australian Chart Book". Austchartbook.com.au. Archived from the original on March 5, 2016. Retrieved 2016-10-08.
  7. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. pp. 346/6. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  8. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  9. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 2/05/77". Archived from the original on May 25, 2015. Retrieved 2015-05-25.
  10. ^ Steffen Hung. "Forum - Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts - 1980s (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Australian-charts.com. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved 2016-10-08.
  11. ^ "Image : RPM Weekly - Library and Archives Canada". Bac-lac.gc.ca. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  12. ^ [1][dead link]
  13. ^ "Cash Box YE Pop Singles - 1977". Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved 2016-07-26.

External links[edit]