NEW YORK CITY SERENADE

Live 23 Jul 1973 (early show) version


Well, Billy, he's down by the railroad tracks
Sitting low in the back seat of his Cadillac
Diamond Jackie, she's so intact
She falls like an angel, so softly beneath him
Jackie's heels are stacked
Billy's got cleats on his boots
Together they're gonna boogaloo down Broadway
And come back home with the loot
It's midnight in Manhattan, this is no time to get cute, it's a mad dog's promenade
So walk tall
Or don't walk at all

Fish lady, yeah, oh, fish lady, she baits those tenement walls
She won't take corner boys, they ain't got no money, and they're so easy
Mama, you were born black and blue
You didn't have to wait for somebody to hit you, no
So take my arm, baby, and I promise I'll walk with you down Broadway, oh
Take my hand, come on, move with me down Broadway
Oh, I'm a young boy, baby, and I, I walk with you proud, I walk with you proud, I walk with you proud
Shake your rotten life, shake away your rotten life, shake away your rotten life, come on, oh, yeah, all right
She won't take the train, no, she won't take the train
No, she won't take the train, no, she won't take the train
Oh, she won't take the train, no, she won't take the train
Oh, she won't take the train, no, she won't take the train
She's afraid them tracks are gonna slow her down
When she turns, I'll be gone
So long

Oh, vibes man, oh, jazz man in the alley, play me your New York City serenade
Any deeper blue, you'll be playin' in your grave
Save those notes: spend 'em on your blues boys
Save them notes: spends 'em on his darlin' yearlin' boy
Hit the church note, ring it, vibes man sting a trash can
Listen to your junkman
Listen to your junkman
Watch out for your junkman
Oh, listen to your junkman
(Singin')
Singin', (singin')
Oh, singin', (singin')
Oh, singin', (singin')
Oh, singin', singin', singin', singin', singin', my, my, my, my, yeah, yeah
Oh, she's singin', all right, all right, oh, yeah

Right, yeah
Watch out for your junkman
Watch out for your junkman


Info

The above lyrics are for the live 23 Jul Aug 1973 (early show) performance of NEW YORK CITY SERENADE at Max's Kansas City in New York City, NY, during what is considered the Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J. Tour. The song was played in a full-band, album-esque version with early/developing lyrics and featured David Sancious playing the string part on a Mellotron that the band rented from Carroll Music in Manhattan. This is earliest known live performance of the song.

Bruce Springsteen and his band played six nights, two shows each night, from 18 to 23 Jul 1973 at Max's Kansas City in New York City, NY. These were double-bill shows, with The Wailers (led by Bob Marley) opening and Springsteen and his band headlining. This was The Wailers' first-ever USA tour, which had started the week before with a 6-night (12-show) headlining stint in Boston, MA.

Promotional ad for the July 1973 six-night stand at Max's Kansas City, New York City, NY
Promotional ad for the July 1973 six-night stand at Max's Kansas City, New York City, NY
(Taken from Brucebase)

Credits / References

Thanks Jake (ol'catfishinthelake at BTX and Greasy Lake) for the lyrics help. Some of the above information is taken from Brucebase.

Available Versions

List of available versions of NEW YORK CITY SERENADE on this website:

NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Album version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Original studio version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 23 Jul 1973 (early show) version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 31 Jul 1973 (late show) version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 17 Nov 1973 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 06 Jan 1974 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 03 Mar 1974 (late show) version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 09 May 1974 (early show) version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 13 Jul 1974 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 29 Oct 1974 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 05 Feb 1975 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 22 Jul 1975 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 20 Jun 2000 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 03 Oct 2003 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 07 Nov 2009 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 11 Jul 2013 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Live 26 Feb 2014 version]
NEW YORK CITY SERENADE [Pete Yorn's cover version]

Page last updated: 03 Jun 2012