Saturday, July 13, 2002

Bruce Springsteen “The Rising” charted

The Rising

Bruce Springsteen

Writer(s): Bruce Springsteen (see lyrics here)

Released: July 16, 2002

First Charted: July 13, 2002

Peak: 52 US, 26 AC, 16 A40, 13 AA, 24 AR, 94 UK , 1 DF (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, -- UK, -- world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 5.9 video, -- streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

The title cut from Bruce Springsteen’s twelfth album was written in response to the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York City in which terrorists hijacked commercial airliners and crashed them into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, killing nearly 3000 people. Springsteen was specifically inspired by the image of New York City fire fighters climbing into the towers to try and rescue survivors before the buildings came crashing down.

The song, and the album as a whole, “is one of the very best examples in recent history of how popular art can evoke a time period and all of its confusing and often contradictory notions, feelings, and impulses.” AMG While many post-9/11 songs were focused on revenge and patriotism, “The Rising” “is a much more introspective look at the events, as Springsteen attempts to reflect the many different emotions caused by the tragedy.” SF It “touched listeners so intensely that it became genuinely healing on a national level.” SS

The song opens with the narrator describing the act of climbing the stairs and being engulfed in flames. He has final visions of his wife and children and describes seeing Mary in the garden of a thousand sighs, suggesting the religious ascension of “Mary Magdalene meeting the risen Christ on Easter morning.” WK Writer Jeffrey Symynkywicz described it as an anthem about “arising out of the darkness and despair of September 11.” WK Music historian Steve Sullivan starts “from a place of overwhelming loss and sorrow…[and] comes to celebrate the unity of family and friends” SS and challenges the listener to “seize life’s possibilities.” SS “One feels joy and hope while wiping away tears.” SS

The New York Times described the song as a story in which “one man's afterlife is an endless longing for the physical touch of those left behind, and the music climbs toward jubilation as an act of will.” WK Allmusic called it “an invitation to share everything, to accept everything, to move through everything individually and together.” AMG Rolling Stone said some may misunderstand the song, explaining that Springsteen’s “concern is not with a national uprising but with a rising above: the transcending of ever-mounting losses and ancient hatreds.” WK

“The Rising” earned Grammys for Best Rock Song and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance. It was also nominated for Song of the Year.


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First posted 2/27/2023.

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