Springsteen originally recorded this batch of songs as demos on a 4-track recorder as a template for later E Street Band renditions. But Springsteen and his producers ultimately decided that the demo recordings captured the spirit of the record better and released them as the official album.
Fans of the Boss have long hoped for a release of what they’ve dubbed Electric Nebraska but those dreams have (so far) gone unfulfilled.
I can’t recall exactly when I discovered Nebraska. Certainly not in 1982. Two years later, Springsteen would hit the stratosphere with the release of the very different Born in the U.S.A., and that was the first time I remember being aware of him as an artist.
But I found Nebraska many years after that, perhaps in my senior year of high school or first year of college. Its downbeat (depressing, even) tone and themes were a perfect fit for my melancholy music loving soul.
Me and her went for a ride sir and ten innocent people died
From the town of Lincoln Nebraska with a sawed-off .410 on my lap
Through to the badlands of Wyoming I killed everything in my path
I can’t say that I’m sorry for the things that we done
At least for a little while sir me and her we had us some fun
The jury brought in a guilty verdict and the judge he sentenced me to death
Midnight in a prison storeroom with leather straps across my chest
Sheriff when the man pulls that switch sir and snaps my poor neck back
You make sure my pretty baby is sittin’ right there on my lap
They declared me unfit to live said into that great void my soul’d be hurled
They wanted to know why I did what I did
Well sir I guess there’s just a meanness in this world