We’ve danced around this issue for too long: Which version of “Blinded by the Light” do you like better, Manfred Mann & The Earth Band‘s hit version or The Boss‘ original?
Be honest. There’s nothing to be gained by trying to find the “cool” answer.
If you need a refresher on these versions, check out each version…after the jump!
I like them both, but I will go with Bruce’s original. I still love the “rock” songs on Greetings from Asbury Park (“Blinded,” “Growin’ Up,” “Does This Bus Stop,” “For You,” “Spirit in the Night,” and “It’s Hard To Be a Saint”), whereas I have no interest at all in the slow, acoustic songs. The transparent Dylan and Van wannabe quality of some of those songs occasionally verges on the comical, but they never quite spill over the line. “Blinded” maybe comes closest to pure comedy with its stream-of-Dylanness lyric but maybe it’s the Van-ish backing that keeps it real? Whatever, I’ve always gotten a kick out of it, and the fact that it was only rarely played on the radio in my youth always gave it a certain appeal as well, whereas of course the Manfred Mann version was a huge hit and sorta ubiquitous.
Then, of course, there is the enduring mystery of how they turned Bruce’s “cut loose like a deuce” into what sounds like “wrecked up/revved up/ripped up like a douche.” Perhaps Mike Love has some thoughts on that.
Still sounds like “wrapped up like a douche something something boner in the night” to me.
I voted for Bruce, because come on the other one is Manfred Mann’s Earth Band. Seriously? But Bruce’s rhyming dictionary period is not my favorite.
I picked the Earth Band version. I always liked them, but they were pretty long in the tooth by then. And without Tonyola around, someone has to stand up for Progressive Rock bands, even when they quit being Progressive. Maybe they were a Regressive Rock band by that time, like when Yes put out 90125.
Yes, tell us more about this regressive rock, I think you’re on to something.