I WANNA MARRY YOU

Album version


I see you walking, baby, down the street
Pushing that baby carriage at your feet
I see that lonely ribbon in your hair
Tell me am I the man for whom you put it there

You never smile, girl, you never speak
You just walk on by, darling, week after week
Raising two kids alone in this mixed up world
Must be a lonely life for a working girl

Little girl, I wanna marry you, oh yeah
Little girl, I wanna marry you, yes I do
Little girl, I wanna marry you

Now, honey, I don't wanna clip your wings
But a time comes when two people should think of these things
Having a home and a family
Facing up to their responsibilities

They say in the end true love prevails
But in the end true love can be some fairy tale
To say I'll make your dreams come true would be wrong
But maybe, darling, I could help them along

Little girl, I wanna marry you, oh yeah
Little girl, I wanna marry you, yes I do
Little girl, I wanna marry you

Ohhh, my daddy said right before he died
That true, true love was just a lie
He went to his grave a broken heart
An unfulfilled life, girl, makes a man hard

Oh darling, there's something happy and there's something sad
'Bout wanting somebody, oh, so bad
I wear my love, darling, without shame
I'd be proud if you would wear my name

Oh my girl
Ooh my girl
My girl
Oh girl, girl
Yeah
Ooh-ooh
[fades out]


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Info

Music and lyrics by Bruce Springsteen, I WANNA MARRY YOU is the fifth track on side 2 of his 1980 double album The River. The above lyrics are for Bruce Springsteen's studio version of I WANNA MARRY YOU as released in 1980.

Another studio version of I WANNA MARRY YOU (official studio version) was released on The Ties That Bind: The River Collection box set in 2015.

Composition and Recording

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The River

Bruce Springsteen wrapped up the Darkness On The Edge Of Town Tour on the first day of 1979. For the next few months, he altered between composing and practicing solo demos at his home in Holmdel, NJ (between January and June 1979), rehearsing with the band at his Telegraph Hill Road property in Holmdel, NJ (between March and May 1979), and recording in studio at The Power Station in New York City, NY (from March to late August 1979).

By the end of August, enough quality material had been recorded at The Power Station, and it was looking like an album might be released in Christmas 1979. A title, "The Ties That Bind", and tracks were selected and wheels put in motion to produce artwork for the cover. Around September, at least ten tracks were mixed to completion. On 04 Oct 1979, the ten selected tracks were dubbed to two half-track reel-to-reel tapes at The Power Station, and labeled "side one" and "side two". The producer was Jon Landau and the engineers were Neil Dorfsman and Bob Clearmountain. These selected tracks were as follows:


Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind (reel #1, front)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind (reel #1, front)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind (reel #2, front)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind (reel #2, front)

Mock covers with "The Ties That Bind" title were roughed out early in the planning. The cover shot was to be a picture of Bruce Springsteen in front of a barn, with the back cover being a shot of his face behind a screen door. In late September 1979, and for reasons never fully explained, The Ties That Bind album was scrapped as Springsteen's writing process continued.

A second phase of recording sessions was scheduled. Again, for the next few months, Springsteen altered between composing and practicing solo demos at his home in Holmdel, NJ (between September 1979 and February 1980), rehearsing with the band at his Telegraph Hill Road property in Holmdel, NJ (between September 1979 and February 1980), and recording in studio at The Power Station in New York City, NY (from October 1979 to June 1980).

The combined sessions from March 1979 to June 1980 produced the double album The River that was eventually released in October 1980. The studio sessions to some extent extended into August 1980 due to Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band's involvement in the recording of Gary U.S. Bonds' album Dedication, which was released April 1981).

Bruce Springsteen -- The River
Bruce Springsteen -- The River

The album features 20 new Springsteen compositions and clocks at 83:47. It was produced by Bruce Springsteen, Jon Landau, and Steven Van Zandt, engineered by Neil Dorfsman, and mixed by Bob Clearmountain, Chuck Plotkin, and Toby Scott. Track list:

According to recording engineer Neil Dorfsman, about 50 songs were recorded to a completed state during The River sessions. 20 were released on The River and 14 were released as B-sides and on official compilations. 14 songs are circulating via the unofficial route, but the majority of them are poor recordings of band rehearsals at the Telegraph Hill Road property, though it is likely that most of them exist as completed takes from The Power Station.

Other Official Releases

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Other versions of THE TIES THAT BIND were also officially released.

Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind: The River Collection
The official studio version of I WANNA MARRY YOU was released on The Ties That Bind: The River Collection box set in 2015.
Bruce Springsteen -- The Ties That Bind: The River Collection
The live 05 Nov 1980 version of I WANNA MARRY YOU was released on The Ties That Bind: The River Collection box set in 2015.

Live History

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Covers

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Various artists -- Play Some Pool, Skip Some School, Act Real Cool: A Global Pop Tribute To Bruce Springsteen
Various artists -- Play Some Pool, Skip Some School, Act Real Cool: A Global Pop Tribute To Bruce Springsteen

2xCD - Where It's At Is Where You Are (WIACD20) - UK, 2009

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album. I WANNA MARRY YOU is performed by Harvey Williams.
Sergio Gisbert -- Loose Ends: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen's 78-80 Era
Sergio Gisbert -- Loose Ends: A Tribute To Bruce Springsteen's 78-80 Era

CD - no label (no catalog number) - Spain, 2014

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

References

Some of the above info about the studio recording and the live performances is taken from Brucebase.

Available Versions

List of available versions of I WANNA MARRY YOU on this website:

I WANNA MARRY YOU [Album version]
I WANNA MARRY YOU [Official studio version]

Page last updated: 25 Dec 2015