Ron Rosenbaum, Writer

April 19, 2008

Today's Moment of Beauty: A Neglected Springsteen Song

Filed under: Uncategorized — ronrosenbaumwriter @ 6:31 pm

I should do this more often. Just pause and share with you some rare moment of found beauty. I rarely listen to Prairie Home Companion. Nothing against it, just not my thing. But today I happened to catch an amazing duet–I believe it was the Williams sisters–cover of Springsteen’s “If I Should Fall Behind” from Lucky Town.It just killed me. An arrow through the heart. I’m glad I have someone to dedicate it to.

Here are the lyrics. You have to hear it of course, not just read it. But that chorus:

I’ll wait for you,
And if I should fall behind
Wait for me.

I think I spent about a year replaying that song. I could spend another one. He has so many of these underestimated (compared to the anthemic faves, the whole “Boss” bullshit)) simple but intense love songs. I’m thinking of “Tougher Than the Rest”, “Secret Garden”.

Listen to “If I Should Fall Behind”. Am I wrong? Anyone suggest other neglected gems?



  1. Ron–check out Dion’s amazing (a cappella, doo-wop)version of the song from his album Deja Nu. He does another beautiful non-anthemic underestimated Springsteen song on the same album: Book of Dreams.

    As for the performance you heard, maybe it was by Robin & Linda Williams, who are not sisters but husband and wife.

    Comment by mokami — April 20, 2008 @ 7:12 pm | Reply

  2. “Wild Billy’s Circus.” Not a “love” song except in the sense of love of humanity, the wide world and its many wonders, etc. Springsteen’s mission statement.

    Comment by Slampo — April 20, 2008 @ 8:47 pm | Reply

  3. Mr. Rosenbaum: Just a note to say that I know exactly what you mean about “If I Should Fall Behind.” If I may be excused a personal note: I bought Lucky Town when I was living in Tokyo for a year (1992)(in need of some American music, as I recall); I, like you, spent a number of months listening to that song only; (warning: here comes the sentimental part) I remember listening to it in Ueno Park (on a Walkman) on my first date with my (now) wife. As for other “simple but intense love songs” by Bruce, how about these from The River (which I still think is his best album): “I Wanna Marry You”, “Stolen Car” (maybe too bleak), and “Fade Away” (maybe too anthemic)?

    Comment by Manwithoutqualities — April 20, 2008 @ 11:59 pm | Reply

  4. In memory of Danny Federici: “Reason to Believe”, “Shut Out the Light”, “Man at the Top” and “The Promise”.

    Comment by charlie finch — April 21, 2008 @ 11:36 am | Reply

  5. I once got a chance to meet Springsteen and the only thing I managed to sputter out was that “If I Should Fall Behind” was one of the prettiest songs love ever.

    Comment by Hampton Stevens — April 22, 2008 @ 12:34 am | Reply

  6. Check out Jubilant Sykes cover of the song; it’s a beaut. He named the album “Wait for Me.”

    Comment by L Sunden — April 22, 2008 @ 2:48 pm | Reply

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