Live 11 Aug 1999 version

[Spoken intro:] Well... Haven't done this one in a while so I think I'm gonna do it tonight. This is a song that I wrote when I was going back to my hometown to play in the Catholic grammar school. We had a great night and I felt that I wanted something special to sing. Believe me or not, I didn't have thought I would end up back there. But all the... all the nuns were there and... and the priests were there that night and all my relatives and everybody that I ever knew in town. And I wrote this song, and the sisters are here tonight too, so they already know it has got some bad words in it but... maybe I get a special dispensation for it, you know. So this is for Father McCannon and all the sisters and uh... everybody from my hometown Freehold.

I was born right here on Randolph Street in Freehold
Right behind that big red maple in Freehold
I went to school right here
Got laid and had my first beer
In Freehold

Well my folks all lived and worked right here in Freehold
I remember running up the street past the convent to the church in Freehold
I chased my daddy down in these bars
First fell in love with this guitar
Here in Freehold

I had my first kiss at the YMCA canteen on Friday night
Maria Espinosa, baby where are you tonight
You were thirteen but way ahead of your time
I walked home with a limp but I felt just fine
That night in Freehold

Well the girls at Freehold Regional, yeah they looked pretty fine
I had my heart broke at least a half a dozen times
I wonder do they miss me, do they still get the itch
Would they had dumped me if they knew I'd strike it rich
Straight out of Freehold

Well a lot of good people gave us kids a hand in Freehold
When we started up a Rock And Roll band in Freehold
Yeah we learned pretty quick how to rock it
I'll never forget the feeling of that first five bucks in my pocket
That I earned in Freehold

Well I got outta here hard and fast in Freehold
Everybody wanted to kick my ass back then in Freehold
Well if you were different, black or brown
It was a pretty redneck town
Back in Freehold

Well something broke my daddy's back in Freehold
He left and for thirty years he never come back
Except once he drove from California 3000 miles in three days
Just to call my relatives some dirty names
And he pulled straight out of Freehold

Now he's there by the highway buried in the dirt
His ghost just flippin' the bird
To everybody in Freehold

Well my sister got pregnant at seventeen in Freehold
Back then people they could be pretty mean
Now honey you had a rough road to go, now you ain't made of nothin' but soul
I love you more than you'll ever know
We both survived Freehold

Well my buddy Mike, he's the mayor now in Freehold
I remember when we had a lot more hair in Freehold
I left and swore I'd never walk those streets again jack
Now all I can say is "holy shit, I'm back"
Back in Freehold

Well I read something in the papers a few weeks ago that was pretty funny
Seems the town council was debating whether to up a statue of me in my hometown, but it cost too much money
Well I'd like to thank the Town Council my friends
For saving me from humiliation by displaying the good hard common sense
We learned in Freehold

Well this summer everything was green
Rode my kids on the fire engine down through the streets of Freehold
I brought them to where dad was born and raised
And first felt the sun on his face
In Freehold

Well I still got a lot of real good friends back there
And I can usually find a free beer somewhere
With free dinners I am blessed
Should I go crazy, blow all my money, hit the tabloids, become fodder for moronic talk shows, and turn my life into a complete fucking mess
At least I'll never go hungry I guess In Freehold

I got a good Catholic education in Freehold
Led to an awful lot of masturbation here in Freehold
Now father it was just something I did for a smile
Hell I still get a good one off once in a while
And dedicate it to Freehold

Don't get me wrong, I ain't putting anybody down
In the end it all just goes and comes around
In my hometown
Back in Freehold

[Spoken outro:] It's a masterpiece I know...


The above lyrics are for the live 11 Aug 1999 performance of FREEHOLD at Continental Airlines Area in East Rutherford, NJ, during The Reunion Tour. This version varies significantly from the 1996-1997 versions.

Ticket stub for the 11 Aug 1999 show at Continental Airlines Area, East Rutherford, NJ
Ticket stub for the 11 Aug 1999 show at Continental Airlines Area, East Rutherford, NJ

This was the fourteenth of a fifteen-night stand at Continental Airlines Arena.

Proposed Bruce Springsteen Statue

In this 1999 version, Springsteen sings "Seems the town council was debating whether to up a statue of me in my hometown, but it cost too much money." In 1999 sculptor William Dean Kilpatrick proposed to Freehold Mayor Michael Wilson to create a 10-foot-tall statue of Bruce Springsteen. The mayor, a friend of Springsteen since childhood (also mentioned in a dedicated verse in the song), passed the proposal on to the Citizens Advisory Council, which recommended to the Borough Council at an April 28 meeting that the proposal be turned down because of the project's $200,000 estimated cost. There was no vote, and the statue was never made. Obviously, this verse about the statue didn't exist in the 1996-1997 versions.


Thanks Chris at for the spoken intro corrections.

Available Versions

List of available versions of FREEHOLD on this website:

FREEHOLD [Live 08 Nov 1996 version]
FREEHOLD [Live 12 Feb 1997 version]
FREEHOLD [Live 10 May 1997 version]
FREEHOLD [Live 11 Aug 1999 version]
FREEHOLD [Live 19 Feb 2003 version]

Page last updated: 25 Jul 2010