You know that old saying, "If at first you don't succeed, try, try, and try again"? or was it "If at first you don't succeed...Skydiving is not for you!"
Well today is a great lesson in that, no not in Skydiving!
On this day in 1973 an artist from New Jersey called Bruce Springsteen released his debut album, Greetings From Asbury Park N.J.. Some people assume that he was a star from the word go but nothing could be further from the truth. His live shows might have been drawing big crowds but sales of his debut album didn't surpass 25,000 in the first year of release!
He signed a deal with Columbia Records in 1972 on the strength that he was like the "new Dylan" (which of course he wasn't really!) and after much rangling about what should end up on the Debut album, his manager and the label I think were maybe wanting his more folksy acoustic numbers whilst Bruce wanted band songs. The compromise brought the decision to have five songs with the band ("For You", "Growin' Up", "Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?" "It's Hard to be a Saint in the City", and "Lost in the Flood") and five solo songs ("Mary Queen of Arkansas", "The Angel", "Jazz Musician", "Arabian Nights", and "Visitation at Fort Horn"). Clive Davis, then President of the label heard it and decided there was not a single on the album which forced Bruce into writing "Blinded by the Light" and "Spirit in the Night". The addition of these two new songs then kicked into touch "Jazz Musician", "Arabian Nights", and "Visitation at Fort Horn" leaving 7 band songs and 2 solo ones.
Both "Blinded by the Light" and "Spirit in the Night" were released as singles and both failed to chart. In fact, Springsteen wouldn't have a hit single until 1975's Born To Run (which only reached #23 in the USA and #17 in the UK).
The album has gone two times Platinum in the States and got a Silver Disc in the UK and a Gold Disc in Australia.
He would follow up this album in September 1973 with The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle. It was received with critical acclaim but sales wise had little commercial success. That album also began selling when better success came Springsteen's way (as with the first 2 x Platinum in the States, Silver in the UK and Gold in Australia).
A last ditch effort was put into the making of a third album, it was make or break time! That album was Born To Run, considered by many to be one of the greatest rock albums ever! It reached #3 in the USA, #36 in the UK as well as charting in a number of other countries. That colossal album has gone on to record huge sales in the States reaching 6x Platinum, 2x Platinum in Canada and Australia, and Platinum in New Zealand and the UK. Born To Run has re-entered the chart a number of times as well #66 (1980), #101 (1985 though in the UK it peaked at #17), and the 30th Anniversary Edition of the album in 2005 peaked at #18 in the USA.
Greetings From Asbury Park N.J.
22nd November 2009
HSBC Arena, Buffalo
So, there you go, I'm pretty sure an inventor or a scientist would capture the "If at first you don't succeed saying..." better but this is a music blog and not one about inventors or science! Have a good day.
Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!