THIS HARD LAND

Live 11 Dec 1998 version


[Spoken intro:] This is called "This Hard Land".

[Some instrumental-only snippets with chatter between Springsteen and the show's staff in between]

Hey there mister, can you tell me what happened to the seeds I've sown
Can you give me a reason, sir, as to why they never grown
Well just blown around from town to town till they're back out on this field
Where they fall from my hand back into the dirt of this hard land

[Chatter, more practice snippets]

[Spoken:] Ok? Yes, anytime? Ok, here we go. I'm gonna start. Alright.

Well hey there mister, can you tell me what happened to the seeds I've sown
Can you give me a reason, sir, as to why they never grown
Well they just blown around from town to town till they're back out on these fields
Yeah where they fall from my hand back in the dirt of this hard land

Now me and my sister, well from Germantown yeah we did ride
Yeah we made our beds, sir, from the rock on the mountain side
Yeah we've been blown around from town to town just looking for a place to land
Where the sun bursts through the clouds to fall like a circle, like a circle of fire down on this hard land

Now even the rain it don't come around, don't come around here no more
And the only sound at night's the wind slamming that back porch door
It stirs you up like it wants to blow you down, just twisting and churning up the sand
And leaving all them scarecrows lying face down, face down in the dirt of this hard land

From a building up on the hill I can hear a tape deck blasting "Home On The Range"
I can see them bar rim choppers sweeping low across the plains
It's me and you Frank, we're looking for lost cattle, our hooves twisting and churning up the sand
Hey we're riding in the whirlwind, searching for lost treasure way down south of the Rio Grande
Hey we're riding across that river in the moonlight way up onto the banks of this hard land

Hey Frank, won't you pack your bags, meet me tonight down at Liberty Hall
I just want a kiss from you my brother and we'll ride 'til we fall
And we'll sleep in the fields, we'll sleep by the rivers, in the morning we'll make a plan
Well if you can't make it, stay hard, stay hungry, stay alive if you can, meet me in a dream of this hard land

[Spoken:] Was it good? Uh... Johnny? Good take, or should we shoot another one?
Yeah I think it's alright. I was thinking of doing another one, but does it matter? I don't know. I was pretty good but I haven't played it in a while. Uh... John? Maybe... He's... he's on the phone (chuckles). He's got phone calls to make (chuckles). Alright. Oh hell, I can sing it while we're just waiting for him. I'm gonna sing it again. Did you hear that? Should I do it again? One more, just so I can say I did (chuckles). Just for the hell of it.

[More chatter]

[Spoken:] Can I start? Yes? I can start? Ok.

[False start]

[Spoken:] I'm sorry about this.

Hey mister, can you tell me what happened to the seeds I've sown
Can you give me a reason, sir, as to why they never grown
They just blown around yeah from town to town till they're back out on these fields
Yeah where they fall from my hand way back into the dirt of this hard land

Now me and my sister, well from Germantown yeah we did ride
And we made our beds, sir, from the rock on the mountain side
Yeah we've been blown around yeah from town to town just looking for a place to stand
Where the sun bursts through the clouds to fall like a circle, yeah like a circle of fire down on this hard land

Now even the rain it don't come around, don't come around here no more
And the only sound at night's the wind slamming that back porch door
It'll stirs you up like it wants to blow you down, just twisting and churning up the sand
Hey leaving all them scarecrows lying face down, face down in the dirt of this hard land

From a building up on the hill I can hear a tape deck blasting "Home On The Range"
I can see them bar rim choppers yeah sweeping low across the plains
It's me and you Frank, yeah we're looking for lost cattle, our hooves twisting and churning up the sand
Yeah we're riding in the whirlwind, searching for lost treasure way down south of the Rio Grande
Yeah we're riding across that river in the moonlight up on the banks of this hard land

Hey Frank, won't you pack your bags, meet me tonight down at Liberty Hall
I just want a kiss from you my brother and we'll ride 'til we fall
And we'll sleep in the fields, we'll sleep by the rivers, in the morning we'll make a plan
Well if you can't make it, stay hard, stay hungry, stay alive if you can, meet me in a dream of this hard land


[Spoken:] Yeah.
[Chatter]


Info

The above lyrics are for the live 11 Dec 1998 performance of THIS HARD LAND at PalaDozza in Bologna, Italy, during a guest appearance on "Taratata", a TV show broadcast on Italian television channel Rai Uno. The song was played solo on acoustic guitar and harmonica. Springsteen first soundchecked the song before performing two full takes, the second of which was broadcast – the above parts in bold were broadcast.

1998 European Media Tour

In December 1998 Bruce Springsteen embarked on a brief five-city European media tour to promote the Tracks box set. In each city Springsteen appeared on a local radio or TV station giving an interview and performing one or two solo acoustic songs:

Another stop in Amsterdam, which was supposed to take place before going to Spain, was reportedly cancelled due to bad weather conditions.

It was during this series of promotional appearances that Springsteen first confirmed an upcoming tour with the E Street Band. He first gave a hint during the interview in Germany, and then confirmed during the interview in Sweden. Later that day (08 Dec 1998) an official press release from Shore Fire Media confirmed the news.

Request

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Available Versions

List of available versions of THIS HARD LAND on this website:

THIS HARD LAND [Official 1982 studio version]
THIS HARD LAND [Official 1995 studio version]
THIS HARD LAND [Unofficial 1995 studio version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 23 Mar 1993 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 21 Feb 1995 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 05 Apr 1995 (Sony Music Studios) version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 28 Oct 1995 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 09 Dec 1995 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 11 Dec 1998 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 14 Dec 1998 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 29 Jun 2000 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 19 Feb 2003 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 20 Feb 2003 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 28 Jul 2013 version]
THIS HARD LAND [Live 28 Jan 2014 version]

Page last updated: 05 Mar 2015