Bruce Springsteen on Ruthless Rhymes: ‘Live at the Hammersmith Odeon’ / ‘ “E” Ticket ‘ and Fakes ‘BORN TO ROCK’ + ‘SMALL TOWN BOY’

LIVE AT HAMMERSMITH ODEON

Springsteen atHammersmith

A) Ruthless Rhymes labels. Orange/Blue/Yellow insert. Matrix BS 1975 (same for all versions)
B) Slipped disc labels. Various insert colors
C) Blue blank labels. Deep Yellow/Orange inserts
E) Raring Records label – first time with wrap-around insert ca. 1981                                                                 D) Smoking Pig labels with wrap-around insert

The bootleg section of brucespringsteen.it reports that the inserts used for C) & E) show signs of having been copied (I will spare you the discussion of shadows between monkey legs… ). More importantly, two types of inserts exist: The standard single sheet version and a slightly re-designed wrap around version with a Bruce-Landau meeting story on the flip side, reminiscent of of a lot of Vicky Vinyl product 1976-77 (see below):

Springsteen Hammersmith Odeon it

This live recording from 18 November 1975 has since been officially released in 2005 on the Born To Run: 30th Anniversary 3-Disc Set .

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“E” Ticket

Springsteen E Ticket 6

Springsteen E Ticket

Springsteen E Ticket bBack of the LP track listing, obviously not written by a German native speaker

Springsteen E Ticket b2The number shown on the top right hand corner of the LP is identical with the matrix number. Also available with blank white and green “hörweite stereophonie” labels, as expected.

Side 1:

Rosalita (Come out tonight)      New York,NY,914 Studios(USA) 01-Jul-1973/1        Instrumental  
Kitty’s back                                                                                                    ”                            –         
Thunder road                               New York,NY,Record Plant(USA) 01-Mar-1975/1        –       
4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy) New York,NY,914 Studios(USA) 01-Jul-1973/1     Instrumental

Side 2:
Walking in the streets          New York,NY,Record Plant(USA) 01-Mar-1975/1                     –   
She’s the one                                                                                                ”                                    –   
A love so fine              New York,NY,????(USA) 16-Oct-1974/1                                        Instrumental
Born to run                  New York,NY,914 Studios(USA) 01-Aug-1974/1                                    – 
Thunder road              New York,NY,Record Plant(USA) 01-Mar-1975/1                       Acoustic  
Jungleland                                                                                           ”                                   ending w. chorus

***

Then there were two advance copy versions that might not actually be genuine – confirmation needed:

Springsteen E Ticket adv

“A blank-cover pre-release is rumored to exist, and it should be a white stamped and hand numbered white sleeve with the same matrix and labels. It’s unclear the role of the so-called ‘advance pressing’ stamped cover edition with custom green labels(ST/MX1), since this circulated massively and at low cost in late ’80, and it seems a modern reprint, carrying an evident reprint of the ‘head’ variant of the label.” [brucespringsteen.it, from where I also borrowed a few images]

Springsteen E Ticket adv.png 2

In the 1980’s also reissued as a picture disc.

***

The book Warman’s American Records includes a picture of this bootleg with the caption “Bruce Springsteen was very upset when he saw this album “E Ticket”, available in independent record stores – with early rough mixes of songs from his Born To Run album.

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BORN TO ROCK

Springsteen Born T RkSpringsteen Born T Rk bObviously not a genuine Ruthless Rhymes product. Also found with “Guilty” labels (another clue) and usually on black PVC.

Tower Theatre, Philadelphia (Upper Darby), PA, USA – December 31, 1975

“This show was the last of a four-night stand (27, 28, 30, 31 December) at the Tower Theatre. Recent events had given Springsteen much publicity and a national profile. Ninety thousand people consequently applied for tickets to see him at this three thousand seat venue. The first thirteen of the eighteen songs played appeared on the double LP Born To Rock (Ruthless Rhymes).

Mike Appel, Springsteen’s then manager, wanted to capitalise on the success of Born To Run with a double or triple LP of live performances. Accordingly, the Tower Theatre shows were recorded, along with concerts in Greenvale, NY (12 December) and Toronto, Canada (21 December), using the Record Plant’s mobile unit with Jimmy Iovine responsible for the recording. Songs from the now-legendary shows at the Bottom Line and the Roxy Theatre earlier in the year were also under consideration for the album. A live album would have been a good idea. Springsteen had already built up a formidable reputation as a live performer, enhanced by radio broadcasts of live shows and cemented by the production of bootlegs of these performances. In particular, Springsteen fan Lou Cohan had produced LPs of the Bottom Line and Roxy shows. As Clinton Heylin writes in his bootleg history, The Great White Wonders, this “was clearly one instance where bootlegs were helping to establish an artist rather than riding on the back of his success.” A live album would also presumably have been much quicker to produce, avoiding the excruciatingly prolonged process that had finally resulted in Born To Run, and getting another album into the record shops while interest in Springsteen was still considerable.

The reason that this live album failed to appear is bound up with the power struggle between Appel and Springsteen’s future manager, Jon Landau. According to Dave Marsh, in his book Born To Run, Springsteen “felt that the band’s onstage excitement wasn’t ready to be captured yet.” Marc Eliot’s The Making Of Bruce Springsteen tells a different story, suggesting that Springsteen initially favoured a live release but was dissuaded by Landau. Landau had been brought in to co-produce Born To Run. He had not only handled production duties but had done much to sort out the impasse and get the album released. Appel, seemingly wary of Landau’s influence, told Landau that he would, of course, work on the next studio album, but that he would not be required for the live LP. In a seeming attempt to marginalise Landau, Appel also pointed out to Springsteen that “it would be foolish to have Jon Landau as a producer of a live album where he had no experience.” As is well known, Landau supplanted Appel as Springsteen’s manager and no live album appeared.” [collectorsmusicreview.com]

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SMALL TOWN BOY

Springsteen ST Boy bSpringsteen ST BoyMatrix: 24473

The back cover mentions ‘Contessa Records’, so this was clearly produced by someone else. Later repressed and now more commonly known as the Swingin’Pig release under the same title from the second half of the 1980s.

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