Bruce Springsteen track My City of Ruin

I could probably subtitle this post “It was songs like this that ultimately led me to starting a music blog.”  The year was 2006 and Amazon didn’t have an mp3 store, iTunes was still wobbling around, and the idea that virtually every song, ever recorded, would be available for instant streaming on a mobile phone was unheard of.  2006 is when The World Forgot officially began and it was because of songs like My City of Ruin.  I would occasionally stumble upon standout tracks (or in this case versions of tracks) that were so moving that I simply had to share them.  I was compelled.

For awhile I made do with mix albums, painstakingly burned to CD, and mailed to friends and family.  Eventually that evolved into electronic distribution (via email and now ancient sites like yousendit or zshare).  Finally I settled upon the name The World Forgot, started a blog through Blogspot (back before the name change to Blogger), and the rest constitutes five years of finding songs, feeling compelled, and sharing them online.

On April 16th, 2006, I posted this live recording of My City of Ruin and to this day it is still the definitive version of the song for me.  At that time this version was rare, almost impossible to find.  Now, of course, you can simply order the entire album America: A Tribute to Heroes via Amazon (although curiously it still is not available in any downloadable format).  Here I choose to present it again.  This is the best version, ever recorded, of My City of Ruin and this song remains one of the reasons I have a music blog.

mp3 : Bruce Springsteen – My City of Ruin

(below is the original text from the April 2006 post)

One of the greatest songs Bruce Springsteen ever wrote has been relegated to a simple prayer for 9/11. What’s really unique is that this song, My City of Ruins, was written before the events of 9/11. In fact Springsteen wrote the song looking back on his beloved city of Asbury Park, NJ. It’s the story of a once great place slowly slipping into decay as the people, and the money they had, migrates to other parts of the world. He speaks of empty churches, evoking images of rust and ruin, images of things long since past. It’s quite a change of pace from his more well known tracks such as Glory Days or Born in the USA.

Regardless of how it’s viewed now, how we’ve misinterpreted this song or labeled it as something it is not, it is ultimately a haunting tale. When The Boss sings mournfully “tell me how do I begin again?” you are forced to wonder if anything this far gone could find a new beginning. You want to have the answer to that question, to be able to give him a solution to all these troubles, but in the end you know that all you can do is clasp your hands and pray with him.

As originally recorded for the album “The Rising” this song takes on almost a sick sense of slick production and radio friendly vibe. The version below is the best one available of this song. Coming from the album “America: A Tribute to Heroes” this version is stripped down, filled out with harmonica and a gospel choir, and contains more emotion in the first fifteen seconds than all other versions of this song combined.

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Let’s Have a Marriage

Just a quick note; I’m getting married tomorrow so The World Forgot will be dormant for about 12 days.  If you’d like to leave a comment feel free to leave your favorite marriage quote (mine would be “Let’s have a marriage.  Let’s have a marriage license.”), or mention your favorite wedding related song and I’ll give it a listen upon my return.

Until then, enjoy the music.

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The World Forgot is Moving

Hello dear readers.  I apologize for the lack of wit filled pithy posts this past week.  I really wish I had the time and the gumption to post new and amazing music for you each and every day {especially considering this past week saw new albums by The Killers, Kanye, and a new Coldplay EP}, but I’ve been super busy moving my life to a new city.  In the past two weeks I’ve bought a new mobile phone, a new car, and have accepted a job which will plant me within easy driving distance of the 317 area code.

Due to all this commotion, what with the packing and the planning and the phone calls and the goodbyes, not to mention the lovely American tradition of Thanksgiving, I haven’t been able to sit down and write a proper post in over a week.  Most unfortunate is the fact that it might yet be another week before I have a chance to pound out some words, upload a track, and fill you all in on what is awesome.  I’m leaving in about ten minutes for the three hour drive to my new home and, as of yet, I’m still transferring files from the computer I’ve been using for a year to a portable hard drive.  I’m hoping the first pay check will allow me the freedom of renting my own pad {right now I’ll be crashing with an old friend from university}, snagging a new notebook {or at least a netbook, MSI Wind anyone?}, and getting my game back on track.

Until then make sure you check out my sidebar as there are plenty of blogs I recommend with all my heart.  Seriously.  Enjoy the run up to the Christmas season.  I’ll bring you musical presents as soon as I can.

Peace out, stay sweet, and wait with bated breath for my return.

TWF is Off On Vacation

Hello dear readers, this is your captain speaking.  For the following three weeks I’ll be traveling and living it up on a little slice of summer vacation.  Due to these good times I most likely will not have access to the internet and thusly I will not have any new music for you kids to gobble up.  I’m spending this week camping along the shore of Lake Michigan and the following two weeks I’ll be backpacking and rafting out in the great Rocky Mountains of Colorado.  I’ll miss you almost as much as you’ll miss me.

As a reminder, if you’re in the NYC area make sure you get out to see an excellent live show by Zach Williams at the Mercury Lounge this July 3rd.  Also, as I prepare to leave you all for awhile, I’d like to recommend you check out these fine blogs for your reading enjoyment in my absense.  Enjoy them at your leisure.  The World Forgot sincerely recommends An Aquarium Drunkard, Bows + Arrows, Cable and Tweed, Crown Dozen, Good Weather for Airstrikes, Gorilla vs. Bear, Hard to Find a Friend, I Guess I’m Floating, The Late Greats, Music for Kids Who Can’t Read Good, My Old Kentucky Blog, Pretty Much Amazing, Said the Gramophone, Songs:Illinois, Stereogum, This Recording, You Ain’t No Picaso, and Who Killed the Mixtape.

For all you Yanks have a fun holiday weekend.  For the rest of the world enjoy your July.  Cheers.

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Interviewed by Record of the Day

A couple of weeks ago I was emailed an interview by Record of the Day. I’m fairly confident in assuming that most of you don’t read their e-mag, so I’ve included the questions and answers here for your reading pleasure.

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Where are you based? – Currently I blog out of northern Indiana in the States although for about a year I was maintaining the blog from China.

What made you start an mp3 blog? – I’ve always been passionate about music and this passion has always led me to share my favorite bands with my friends. Starting an mp3 blog allowed me to share this passion with more people at a time.

Who are your favourite three artists? – Right now my favourite three artists would have to be Cloud Cult, The Weakerthans, and The National.

Please pick just one artist as a tip to break through in 2008 – If there’s one artist that could potentially break during the next nine months I would go with Wakey!Wakey!

Is there a band or track that you were first to feature in the blogosphere that you are particularly proud of? – I’m particularly fond of Zach Williams who is currently based out of New York City. As far as I know I’m the only blogger to ever write about him.

What’s your day job? – Currently I work as a substitute teacher.

What would be your dream job in music? – My dream job in the music industry would be to work for a magazine such as Paste {or for a music promotions gig such as Chop Shop}.

Do you make any money from the blog or do you have any plans to try and make money? – Although I do have advertisements on my blog they only generate income when someone actually purchases a product through those links. As of right now I don’t even make enough money to pay my web hosting bills each month.

Do you still go to record stores and buy vinyl/CDs? – I enjoy record stores that have vinyl due to the nostalgia factor but I can’t justify spending money on a CD that I will immediately rip onto my computer and then store away in the corner with all the other unused CDs.

Do you post classic tracks or just new music? – I try to maintain at least some classic tracks on The World Forgot. Basically I blog about whatever I find to be particularly appealing to me at the moment I sit down to write regardless as to when the track was recorded.

Do you post links to iTunes, Amazon or any other store? – I have links to buy music from iTunes, Amazon, and CDBaby on every single post I put on the web as long as that particular artist is available from those retailers.

Do you only post music that has been sent to you by the band or their representative? – No, although when I can I work as closely as possible with an artist or their representative to get permission. I do however only post music that I think will interest people in new musicians.

If you received a leaked album by your favourite band way ahead of release date, would you post it? – I would never knowingly post a leaked album before it’s release date. Sometimes I receive an album ahead of the actual release for promotion and review purposes and in that case I post a track or two.

Do you ever post music you don’t like? – I try not to. I attempt to only post about music that I actually enjoy.

Have you been threatened with legal action at any point? Or asked to remove tracks by artists or their representatives? Do you comply? – Only once have I ever been asked to remove a track by a label representing an artist. I complied as soon as I possibly could after reading their email.

Anything to add about your policy for posting music? – I only post music so that new fans can be made for the artist I’m talking about.

What are your favourite mp3 blogs?You Ain’t No Picasso, Cable & Tweed, Who Killed the Mixtape, and Good Weather for Airstrikes are currently on my short list for favorite blog.

Do you read traditional music magazines and papers? Which ones? – I read Paste every month and occasionally Spin and Rolling Stone.

How much influence do you think you have? Is your influence growing? Any examples of artists you feel you’ve really helped break? – I have a bunch of emails and a massive list of comments that declare I’ve helped open the ears of some of my readers. I like to think I have an influence on those who read my blog, but I’m not sure if I’m as persuasive as the artists songs can be. I’m confident that the longer I maintain my blog, I’m almost to two full years now, my influence will continue to grow.

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Show Some Love

In the past whenever Hype and Elbo.ws started to fail me I took a moment to reflect on what this blog has meant to me, and maybe more importantly, what it means to other people. First of all let me guide you to the list of Friends and Lovers there on the right. I love those bloggers, I really do, and I would appreciate it greatly if you clicked over there and checked out their sites. I know that I’m risking losing you forever, but as long as one blogger benefits then it’s worth it. And seriously, they deserve some love.

I also realize that many of you won’t read this post, won’t click over on that post, and really don’t give a rats ass about anything. But just in case you are reading this post but are too lazy to click on the sidebar here’s a little catchup for you weaker minded fiends. Just click the links hereafter for some great music blogs. It’s not an all inclusive list like some bloggers have simply because I try to keep it limited to the blogs that I actually read on a regular basis. I love these blogs, I hope you will too.

An Aquarium Drunkard
Bows + Arrows
Cable and Tweed
Crown Dozen
Good Weather for Airstrikes
Gorilla vs. Bear
I Guess I’m Floating

The Late Greats
My Old Kentucky Blog
Songs:Illinois
Stereogum
You Ain’t No Picaso
Who Killed the Mixtape

And finally I am going to pay special homage to a blog that I have loved for awhile and have been secretly reading for quite some time. They’ve gone out of their way to send me love and some readers this summer and my list simply wouldn’t be complete without them. To be honest I can’t belive that I’ve left them out for so long. They are and shall ever be in my heart as This Recording. They have great music, an amazing knowledge of pop culture, and the rambling style used in their posting keeps me engaged as I try to understand what exactly links everything talked about in one post together. Basically it’s brilliant stream of consciousness writing and I love it.

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