JESSE

Studio version


Oh Jesse, you better start thinking about saving you neck
Oh Jesse, you put on that leather jacket like you put on respect
You got cleats on your boots and a woman who shoots every time you shuffle out the stage door
Darling Jesse, ah do you know what it's all for

Ah Jesse, your manager brought by them eight-by-ten glossies of your band
Oh Jesse, he says you wear a cross 'round your neck and come on with nails in your hands
With your insides showing and your New York band blowing them old Chicago blues
Ah Jesse, can't you see you're the one, Jesse
Ah sonny, this time it's you

Well Jesse, your child is slobbering all over your pants
And Jesse, your wife has fallen into a trance
She's got eyes that tell no lies, she's seen so many wars
Ah be a good boy, Jesse, tell her she don't have to look no more

Hmm ???

Well Jesse, he knows all the tricks to get the crowd reeling
Oh and Jesse, yeah he rocks 'em with that old soul feeling
And he walks off the stage in a self-adoring haze and gets shoved right out the door
Whoa Jesse, can't you see now boy that that's what it's all about, Jesse
Not even time to do that old played out encore
Oh Jesse
Mmm Jesse


Info

JESSE is a song written by Bruce Springsteen who recorded it in mid-1972. The song has not yet been officially released. The above lyrics are transcribed from the only known studio version of JESSE.

Composition and Recording

There is no indication to when JESSE was written. One studio version of the song is in circulation among collectors. It's a studio take likely recorded around May-Jun 1972 at Jim Cretecos' apartment in New York City, NY. It features Springsteen solo on vocals and acoustic guitar. The May-Jun 1972 sessions at Jim Cretecos' apartment were produced by Cretecos who also took the role of recording engineer. The above lyrics transcribed from that circulating studio version of JESSE.

The lyric "You got cleats on your boots" is similar to one used in NEW YORK SONG and NEW YORK CITY SERENADE.

JESSE appears on a Springsteen handwritten song list that was put up for
auction in July 2012 on
GottaHaveRockAndRoll.com. Although the auction site claims it to be a setlist, this is most probably a list of songs that Springsteen was considering taking into the studio at the very early stages of the Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J. recording sessions (July 1972).

1972 handwritten song list
1972 handwritten song list

Unofficial Releases

The studio version of JESSE was released on the briefly-legal albums The Early Years (Early Records), Unearthed (Masquerade Music, both issues), and Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, all three issues). See PRODIGAL SON for more details.

Bruce Springsteen -- The Early Years (Early Records)
Bruce Springsteen -- The Early Years (Early Records)
Bruce Springsteen -- Unearthed (Masquerade Music, first issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Unearthed (Masquerade Music, first issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Unearthed (Masquerade Music, second issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Unearthed (Masquerade Music, second issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, first issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, first issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, second issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, second issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, third issue)
Bruce Springsteen -- Before The Fame (Pony Express Records, third issue)

Live History

As far as it's known, Bruce Springsteen has never performed JESSE live.

Covers

As far as it's known, only two artists have recorded and released Bruce Springsteen's JESSE.

Fred Gorhau -- Before The Fame
Fred Gorhau -- Before The Fame

MC - Pony Express Records (C-0949) - USA, 1995

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album containing covers of 15 early songs. As Fred Gorhau told this website, he was "hired for the weekend to record everything".
Graziano Romani -- Soul Crusader: The Songs Of Bruce Springsteen
Graziano Romani -- Soul Crusader: The Songs Of Bruce Springsteen

CD - Freedom Rain (FREED-001) - Italy, 2001

This is a Bruce Springsteen tribute album.

References

Some of the above info about the studio recording is taken from Brucebase. Info and scan for the Fred Gorhau cover album is taken from the Nebraska website.

Available Versions

List of available versions of JESSE on this website:

JESSE [Studio version]

Page last updated: 01 Feb 2013