Live 19 Oct 2001 version
[Spoken intro:] Let's hear it for 'em, they're singing great all night long. Whoa! Yeah. That's fun. Patti! Come out please. Whoa! Look out! Alright. Whoa. I just wanna say uh... we've been glad to be here to entertain you the past few nights, and uh... we hope we've given you some smiles an a little bit of strength, you know.
The screen door slams, Mary's dress sways
Like a vision she dances across the porch as the radio plays
Roy Orbison singing for the lonely
That's me and I want you only
Don't turn me home again
Just can't face myself alone anymore
Don't you run back inside, darling you know just what I'm here for
So you're scared and you're thinking that maybe we ain't so young anymore
Show a little faith, there's magic in the night
You ain't a beauty, but hey you're alright
Well that's alright with me
You can hide 'neath your covers and study your pain
Make crosses from your lovers, throw roses in the rain
Waste your summer praying in vain for a savior to rise from these streets
Well now I'm no hero, that's understood
All the redemption I can offer, girl, is beneath this dirty hood
With a chance to make it good somehow
Hey what else can we do now
Except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair
Well the night's bustin' open, these two lanes will take us anywhere
Hey we got one last chance to make it real
To trade in these wings on some wheels
Climb in back, heaven's waiting down on the tracks
Oh oh come take my hand
We're riding out tonight to case the promised land
Oh oh oh oh Thunder Road, oh Thunder Road, oh Thunder Road
Lying out there like a killer in the sun
Hey I know it's late but we can make it if we run
Oh oh oh oh Thunder Road, sit tight, take hold, Thunder Road
Well I got this guitar and I learned how to make it talk
My car's out back if you're ready to take that long walk
From your front porch to my front seat
The door's open but the ride it ain't free
Yeah I know you're lonely, those words that I ain't spoken
But tonight girl, we'll be free, with all the promises will be broken
There were ghosts in the eyes of all the boys you sent away
They haunt this dusty beach road in the skeleton frames of burned-out Chevrolets
They scream your name at night in the street
Your graduation gown lies in rags at their feet
But in the lonely cool before dawn
You hear their engines roaring on
When you get to the porch they're gone on the wind, so Mary climb in
It's a town full of losers, we're pulling outta here to win
The above lyrics are for the live 19 Oct 2001 performance of THUNDER ROAD at Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, NJ, during The Alliance Of Neighbors Concert. The parts in bold are sung by Patti Scialfa.
As part of his set, Bruce Springsteen played an acoustic THUNDER ROAD during the 18 October sound-check, and he was backed by E Streeters Garry Tallent, Max Weinberg, and wife Patti Scialfa on the song during the 18 and 19 October main shows.
In 2001, following the September 11 attacks on the Pentagon and the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, NY, numerous benefit concerts were held to raise funds for families of victims and rescue workers, as well as relief for New York City. Bruce Springsteen declined invitations to perform at two major concerts held the third weekend of October 2001 in tribute to the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The first was "The Concert For New York City", organized by Paul McCartney and held on 20 Oct 2001 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY. The second was "United We Stand: What More Can I Give", organized by Michael Jackson and held on 21 Oct 2001 at RFK Stadium in Washington, DC.
Instead, he stayed in New Jersey and played a pair of benefit shows for The Alliance Of Neighbors, a charity organization founded to assist the over 150 families from Monmouth County that were affected by the 9/11 tragedy. Along with fellow Monmouth County resident Jon Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen was the first to sign up for the fundraiser, followed by the Rascals' Felix Cavaliere, John Eddy, Joan Jett, Kevin Smith, Phoebe Snow, Joe Ely, the Smithereens, former members of Elvis Presley's band, and others. E Street Band bassist Garry Tallent was the music director for the shows.
With tickets priced from $50 to $500, the two shows were originally scheduled for 19 and 20 October, but then the latter was moved up to 18 October so that it doesn't conflicts with "The Concert For New Your City" and its live VH1 broadcast. The 18 October afternoon sound-check was made public in order to allow younger children from the victims' families to see the performers, and the front sections of seats was held especially for them. Tickets for this Sound Check Show" were priced at $25, and a front section of seats was held especially for younger children from the victims' families. Daniel Murphy Jr. wrote in the Atlantic Highlands Herald that the two-days event raised "up to one million dollars for the Alliance Of Neighbors of Monmouth County". The 19 October show was cablecast on Comcast Network (CN8) throughout the Northeast of the US.
It has been reported that the shows (or maybe the 19 October show only) were originally conceived by Max Weinberg as a tribute to Sun Records, but were transformed into a benefit for local victims of the September 11 attacks.
List of available versions of THUNDER ROAD on this website:THUNDER ROAD [Album version]