Live 27 Oct 1976 version
[Spoken intro:] Yeah. This is a song, this is a song for people, people send stuff backstage all the time. But most of the time they send like, they send like flowers and stuff. You know, like... You know, what am I gonna do with flowers? It's like... send socks! Tube socks, preferably. (chuckles) What've you been doing? Hey, this is the dude that counted off New Year's Eve, this guy (chuckles)... This cat jumps up on stage New Year's Eve, right? This dude over here. Mr. Spotlight Spotlight, this man. Can you spotlight this guy? This guy (chuckles). Now you missed him, right there! Ok (chuckles). This guy (chuckles) I'm sorry. This guy jumps up onstage New Year's Eve, right? And I say "what time is it?", like "how much time do we have?". He goes like, "30 seconds". Right now we're playing and stuff, and like, you know, I'm trying to figure out, so like, we'll get to this part when New Year's Eve, so he says "30 seconds" and then he goes "10! 9! 8!", and like, everybody like, he counted off like, he counted off a minute too soon! Everybody, everybody goes yay! What are you boys doing? This guy over here, this mess! It's time! What's this trash in my face? Give me a break. (chuckles) This is for, this is for this guy, that crazy guy (chuckles). Professor, please!
Well I stood stone-like at midnight suspended in my masquerade
And I combed my hair till it looked just right and commanded the night brigade, whoa!
I was open to pain and crossed by the rain and I walked on a crooked crutch
I strode all alone into a fallout zone and came out with my soul untouched
I hid in the clouded wrath of the crowd, when they said "sit down" I stood up
Ooh, ooh, growin' up
Well the flag of piracy flew from my mast, my sails were set wing to wing
I had a jukebox graduate for first mate, she wouldn't sail but she sure could sing
I pushed B-52, bombed 'em with the blues, my gear set stubborn on standing
I broke all the rules, strafed my old high school, and never once gave thought to landing
I hid in the clouded wrath of the crowd, they said "come down" I threw up
You better watch out now!
[Spoken:] I remember when I was back, my mother made me go to this Catholic school. Right? And the nuns, I remember the nuns used to chase me around, in the church, to make me go to communion on Fridays, right? And like, I remember, when I first, when I made my first confession, it took me so long, that they sent everybody home and from then on, they used to, the class used to go on one day, and they used to send me by myself on this other day, 'cause I'd be in there... And, I remember one time we were sitting in the class and the sister said, she said "Ok, boys and girls, now, I want you all to line up around the room and I want youse to tell me just what youse wanna be when you grow up", right? And so she says, she says "Johnny, what do you wanna be?", and Johnny says "sister, I wanna be a, I wanna be a... policeman", and she says "Mary, what do you wanna be?", she says "I wanna be a nurse", and she says "Ed Sciaky, what do you wanna be when you grow up?", and Ed said "well sister, I wanna be a cheeseburger", and, and then she came to me and she said "hey Bruce, what do you wanna be?" I said "sister," I said "sister, sister, I wanna be... I wanna be... a Rock 'N' Roll star".
I took month-long vacations in the stratosphere, you know it's really hard to hold your breath
I swear I lost everything I ever loved or feared, I was the cosmic kid
My feet they finally took root in the earth but I got me a nice little place in the stars
I swear I found the key to the universe in the engine of an old parked car
I hid in the mother breast of the crowd, when they said "pull down" I pulled up
Yeah, growin' up
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, growin' up
[Spoken outro:] Whose these socks? Whose throwing me socks? They're your socks? What is this? This is junk, it's junk, I was kidding here, alright? This is real, you know, but thanks. These aren't the right kind, these...
The above lyrics are for the live 27 Oct 1976 performance of GROWIN' UP at Spectrum in Philadelphia, PA, during what is known as The Lawsuit Tour. The song was played in a full-band, album-style arrangement, and featured a story in the break.
Despite the marvelous reception received by both Born To Run and the tour which followed, the relationship between Bruce Springsteen and his now former manager and producer Mike Appel was deteriorating. In July 1976 the storm broke; Mike Appel wrote to Springsteen saying that he would not allow Jon Landau (Springsteen's friend and co-producer of Born To Run) to produce the next album, citing a particular paragraph from their original agreement. Springsteen replied on 27 Jul 1976 by firing manager Mike Appel and suing him and his management company Laurel Canyon Ltd. in Federal Court in Manhattan, claiming fraud, breach of trust, and undue influence. Appel counter-sued on 29 Jul 1976 in New York State Supreme Court, asking the court to prohibit Springsteen and Jon Landau from working together in studio. Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band were slated to enter the studio that year for the recording of a new album, except that on 15 Sep 1976 the judge in the lawsuits case ruled that Springsteen was enjoined from any further recording with Columbia Records until Appel's suit was resolved. This would drag for about a year. Meanwhile, Springsteen continued gigging, and in the process broke his self-imposed rule of not playing the larger arenas. This was basically because he was not able to put a record out, and it was the only way his fans would be able to hear him at all. The tour became known as "The Lawsuit Tour" (62 know dates, August 1976 to March 1977).
Thanks Jake (ol'catfishinthelake at BTX and Greasy Lake) for the lyrics help.
List of available versions of GROWIN' UP on this website:GROWIN' UP [Album version]