On This Day, May 22nd

Bruce Springsteen Releases His First Song

51 Years Ago Bruce Springsteen could have been named John Doe. In 1966 New Jersey’s very own boss was an unknown lead singer of an even more obscure band The Castiles. On this day, Springsteen dropped his first ever recording with The Castiles “That’s What You Get”.  The recording is rough and grizzled around the edges. The drums pop against the muddy guitar chords. And the hardly heard falsetto from the frontman clips harsh against the bass within the mix. The lyrics are jumbled against the mud of instrumentation, but the somber chorus rings out again and again. Springsteen repeats through the majority of the song: “That’s what you get for loving me” . The early recording is unrecognizable form his work with the E Street Band, but some of his career defining talents shine through. Although the chord progressions and four on the floor drum groove are rudimentary, they are undoubtedly catchy. This was a song that must have sounded fantastic before it was burned onto tape. If you’re curious at the lo-fi beginnings of one music’s most acclaimed singer-songwriters, listen to That’s What You Get.

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