100 Greatest Bruce Springsteen Songs of All Time
The River, 1980
This dark, piano-driven track was retooled several times during the River sessions; an early rendition featured the phrase "hungry heart" that Springsteen used in the song of that name. In the final version, the narrator, coping with the end of a marriage, drives off into the night. (One alternative take, included on Tracks, hints at a positive resolution.) The song, Springsteen later said, was "concerned with those [relationship] ideas: that if you don't connect yourself with your family and to the world, you feel like you're disappearing, fading away. I felt like that for a very, very long time. Growing up, I felt invisible."
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