U3A: “Dancing In The Dark”

                                                       Dancing In The Dark

Bruce_Springsteen
I get up in the evening
and I ain’t got nothing to say
I come home in the morning
I go to bed feeling the same way
I ain’t nothing but tired
Man I’m just tired and bored with myself
Hey there baby, I could use just a little help

You can’t start a fire
You can’t start a fire without a spark
This gun’s for hire
even if we’re just dancing in the dark

Message keeps getting clearer
radio’s on and I’m moving ’round the place
I check my look in the mirror
I wanna change my clothes, my hair, my face
Man I ain’t getting nowhere
I’m just living in a dump like this
There’s something happening somewhere
baby I just know that there is

You can’t start a fire
you can’t start a fire without a spark
This gun’s for hire
even if we’re just dancing in the dark

You sit around getting older
there’s a joke here somewhere and it’s on me
I’ll shake this world off my shoulders
come on baby this laugh’s on me

Stay on the streets of this town
and they’ll be carving you up alright
They say you gotta stay hungry
hey baby I’m just about starving tonight
I’m dying for some action
I’m sick of sitting ’round here trying to write this book
I need a love reaction
come on now baby gimme just one look

You can’t start a fire sitting ’round crying over a broken heart
This gun’s for hire
Even if we’re just dancing in the dark
You can’t start a fire worrying about your little world falling apart
This gun’s for hire
Even if we’re just dancing in the dark …

DANCING IN THE DARK is a song written by Bruce Springsteen and released on his 1984 album Born In The U.S.A.

It was composed after Springsteen’s manager, Jon Landau, told the exhausted singer that the album lacked a big commercial hit and pushed him to draft one more song. He didn’t take it well, since he had already written seventy songs. Anyway, despite his frustration, and after a brief altercation, Springsteen sat on the bed in his New York City hotel room and penned one of his most personal and deepest songs in a single night. The song sums up his state of mind: he wrote about, his isolation and despair. But, he masked it with a brilliant dance track.

All the imagery is about the difficulties of being an artist (“check my look in the mirror, I wanna change my clothes my hair my face”), about wanting to be inspired “can’t start a fire without a spark”. He also puts a message to the record company in there about how he feels about it: “this gun’s for hire”: it’s impossible to just click a producer’s fingers and get a hit …
… and, ironically, this song, written about not being able to write a hit song, catapulted him to world fame.

13 thoughts on “U3A: “Dancing In The Dark”

  1. Thank you, that was brilliant. I hadn’t heard this story before so it was appreciated. So many talented people, especially in the music industry, are pushed beyond their limits. I can’t imagine living that lifestyle. Authors, published authors anyway, probably go through the same thing. Yikes!

    Liked by 1 person

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