Working on a Dream

At the end of the Magic sessions, Springsteen found himself still writing songs. Encouraged by producer Brendan O’Brien, he recorded during breaks on tour, exploring a classic pop sound for an album release coinciding with Super Bowl XLIII and the inauguration of President Barack Obama. “The Last Carnival” pays tribute to E Street organist Danny Federici, who passed away in 2008.

Released: January 27, 2009
Label: Columbia Records
Produced By: Brendan O'Brien
1 Outlaw Pete
Lyrics
He was born a little baby on the Appalachian Trail
At six months old he'd done three months in jail
He robbed a bank in his diapers and little bare baby feet
All he said was "Folks my name is Outlaw Pete"
I'm Outlaw Pete, I'm Outlaw Pete, can you hear me?

At 25 a Mustang pony he did steal
And he rode her 'round and 'round on heaven's wheel
Father Jesus I'm an outlaw, killer and a thief
And I slow down only to sow my grief
I'm Outlaw Pete, I'm Outlaw Pete, can you hear me?

He cut his trail of tears across the countryside
And where he went women wept and men died

One night he awoke from a vision of his own death
Saddled his pony and rode out deep into the West
Married a Navajo girl and settled down on the res.
And as the snow fell he held their beautiful daughter to his chest
I'm Outlaw Pete, I'm Outlaw Pete, can you hear me?
Can you hear me? Can you hear me?

Out of the East on an Irish stallion came bounty hunter Dan
His heart quickened and burdened by the need to get his man
He found Pete peacefully fishing by the river
Pulled his gun and got the drop
He said "Pete you think you've changed but you have not"

He cocked his pistol pulled the trigger and shouted, "Let it start"
Pete drew a knife from his boot, threw it,
And pierced Dan through the heart
Dan smiled as he lay in his own blood dying in the sun
Whispered in Pete's ear "We cannot undo these things we've done"
You're Outlaw Pete, You're Outlaw Pete, can you hear me?
Can you hear me? Can you hear me?

For forty days & nights Pete rode and did not stop
Till he sat high upon an icy mountaintop
He watched a hawk on a desert updraft, slip & slide
Moved to the edge and dug his spurs deep into his pony's side

Some say Pete and his pony vanished over the edge
And some say they remain frozen high up on that icy ledge
A young Navajo girl washes in the river, her skin so fair
And braids a piece of Pete's buckskin chaps into her hair
Outlaw Pete, Outlaw Pete, can you hear me?
Can you hear me? Can you hear me? Can you hear me?
Can you hear me? Can you hear me?
Also Appears On
London Calling: Live in Hyde Park
2 My Lucky Day
Lyrics
In the room where fortune falls
On a day when chance is all
In the dark of this exile
I felt the grace of your smile
Honey you're my lucky day
Baby you're my lucky day
When I've lost all the other bets I've made
Honey you're my lucky day

I've seen strong hearts give way
To the burdens of the day
To the weary hands of time
Where fortune is not kind
Honey you're my lucky day
Baby you're my lucky day
When I've lost all the other bets I've made
Honey you're my lucky day

I have waited at your side
I've counted the tears you've cried
But to win darling we must pay
So don't hide your heart away
Honey you're my lucky day
Baby you're my lucky day
When I've lost all the other bets I've made
Honey you're my lucky day
3 Working on a Dream
Lyrics
Out here the nights are long the days are lonely
I think of you and I'm working on a dream
I'm working on a dream

The cards I've drawn's a rough hand darlin'
I straighten my back and I'm working on a dream
I'm working on a dream

I'm working on a dream
Though sometimes it feels so far away
I'm working on a dream
And how it will be mine someday

Rain pourin' down I swing my hammer
My hands are rough from working on a dream
I'm working on a dream

I'm working on a dream
Though trouble can feel like it's here to stay
I'm working on a dream
Our love will chase the trouble away

I'm working on a dream
Though it can feel so far away
I'm working on a dream
And our love will make it real someday

Sunrise come I climb the ladder
The new day breaks and I'm working on a dream
I'm working on a dream
I'm working on a dream
I'm working on a dream

I'm working on a dream
Though it can feel so far away
I'm working on a dream
And our love will make it real someday
I'm working on a dream
Though it can feel so far away
I'm working on a dream
And our love will make it real someday
Also Appears On
London Calling: Live in Hyde Park
4 Queen of the Supermarket
5 What Love Can Do
Lyrics
There's a pillar in the temple where I carved your name
There's a soul sitting sad and blue
Now the remedies you've taken are all in vain
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do

Darlin', I can't stop the rain
Or turn your black sky blue
But let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do

Well, now our truth lay shattered you stood at world's end
As the dead sun rose in view
Well, if any of this matters, with a kiss my friend
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do

Darling, we can't stop this train
When it comes crashing through
But let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do

When the bed you lie on is nails and rust
And the love you've given's turned to ashes and dust
When the hope you've gathered's drifted to the wind
And it's you and I my friend
You and I now friend

Here our memory lay corrupted and our city lay dry
Let me make this vow to you
Here where it's blood for blood and an eye for an eye
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do

Here we bear the mark of Cain
We'll let the light shine through
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do
Let me show you what love can do
6 This Life
Lyrics
A bang then stardust in your eyes
A billion years or just this night
Either way it'll be all right
A blackness then the light of a million stars
As you slip into my car the evening sky strikes sparks
This life, this life and then the next
With you I have been blessed, what more can you expect

At night at my telescope alone
This emptiness I've roamed
Searching for a home
The stars a brief string of shining charms
Rushing in red out of our arms into the drifting dark
This life, this life and then the next
With you I have been blessed, what more can you expect
This life, this life and then the next
I finger the hem of your dress, my universe at rest

We reach for starlight all night long but gravity's too strong
Chained to this earth we go on and on and on
Then a million suns cresting where you stood
A beauty in the neighborhood
This lonely planet never looked so good

This life, this life and then the next
With you I have been blessed, what more can you expect
This life, this life and then the next
I finger the hem of your dress, my universe at rest
7 Good Eye
Lyrics
I was standing by the river where the cold black water run
I was standing by the river where the cold black water run
I had my good eye to the dark and my blind eye to the sun

I had all earthly riches I had each and every one
I had all earthly riches I had each and every one
But I had my good eye to the dark and my blind eye to the sun

Well I swore to you my darlin', that you were the only one
Yes I swore to you my darlin', you were the only one
But I had my good eye to the dark and my blind eye to the sun
8 Tomorrow Never Knows
Lyrics
Where the cold wind blows
Tomorrow never knows
Where your sweet smile goes
Tomorrow never knows
You and me, we been standing here my dear
Waiting for our time to come
Where the green grass grows
Tomorrow never knows

In the field your long hair flowed
Down by the Tildenberry tracks
There 'neath the water tower
I carried you on my back
Over the rusted spikes of that highway of steel
Where no more thunder sounds
Where the time goes
Tomorrow never knows

He who waits for the day's riches will be lost
In the whispering tide
Where the river flows
Tomorrow never knows
9 Life Itself
Lyrics
We met down in the valley where the wine of love and destruction flowed
There in that curve of darkness where the flowers of temptation grow
I left the rest for the others it was you and nothing else
You felt so good to me baby, good as life itself
You were life itself, rushing over me
Life itself, the wind in black elms,
Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you

I knew you were in trouble anyone could tell
You carried your little black book from which all your secrets fell
You squandered all your riches your beauty and your wealth
Like you had no further use for, for life itself
You were life itself, rushing over me
Life itself, the wind in black elms,
Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you

Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
And life itself, rushing over me
Life itself, the wind in black elms,
Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you

So here's one for the road, here's one to your health and to
Life itself, rushing over me
Life itself, the wind in the black elms,
Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you

Life itself, life itself, life itself...
10 Kingdom of Days
Lyrics
With you I don't hear the minutes ticking by
I don't feel the hours as they fly
I don't see the summer as it wanes
Just a subtle change of light upon your face

Walk away, walk away, walk away, walk away
This is our kingdom of days

I watch the sun as it rises and sets
I watch the moon trace its arc with no regrets
My jacket around your shoulders, the falling leaves
The wet grass on our backs as the autumn breeze drifts through the trees

Walk away, walk away, walk away, walk away
This is our kingdom of days
This is our kingdom of days

I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you I do
You whisper "Then prove it, then prove it, then prove it to me baby blue."

And I count my blessings that you're mine for always
We laugh beneath the covers and count the wrinkles and the grays
Sing away, sing away, sing away, sing away
Sing away, sing away, my darling, we'll sing away
This is our kingdom of days
This is our kingdom of days
This is our kingdom of days
11 Surprise, Surprise
Lyrics
Well, surprise, surprise, surprise
Yea, surprise, surprise, surprise
Well, surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down
Well, surprise, surprise, surprise
Yea, surprise, surprise, surprise
Well, surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down

Today is your birthday we traveled so far we two
So let's blow out the candles on your cake and we'll raise a glass or two
And when the sun comes out tomorrow
It'll be the start of a brand new day
And all that you have wished for I know will come your way

Well, surprise, surprise, surprise
Yea, surprise, surprise, surprise
Well, surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down

In the hollow of the evening, as you lay your head to rest
May the evening stars scatter a shining crown upon your breast
In the darkness of the morning as the sky struggles to light
May the rising sun caress and bless your soul for all your life

Well, surprise, surprise, surprise
Yea, surprise, surprise, surprise
Well, surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down

Well, surprise, surprise, surprise
Yea, surprise, surprise, surprise
Well, surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down

Surprise, surprise
C'mon open your eyes and let your love shine down
12 The Last Carnival
Lyrics
Sundown, sundown
They're taking all the tents down
Where have you gone my handsome Billy?

Sundown, sundown
The carnival trains' leavin' town
Where are you now my darlin' Billy?

We won't be dancing together on the high wire
Facing the lions with you at my side anymore
We won't be breathin' the smoke and the fire
On the midway

Hangin' from the trapeze my wrists waitin' for your wrists
Two daredevils high up on the wall of death
You throwin' the knife that lands inches from my heart
Sundown

Moonrise, moonrise
The light that was in your eyes
Has gone away

Daybreak, daybreak
The thing in you that made me ache
Has gone to stay

We'll be riding the train without you tonight
The train that keeps on movin'
Its black smoke scorching the evening sky
A million stars shining above us like every soul livin' and dead
Has been gathered together by a God to sing a hymn over your bones

Sundown, sundown
Empty are the fairgrounds
Where are you now my handsome Billy?
13 The Wrestler
Lyrics
Have you ever seen a one trick pony in the field so happy and free
If you've ever seen a one trick pony then you've seen me
Have you ever seen a one legged dog makin' his way down the street
If you've ever seen a one legged dog then you've seen me

(Then you've seen me) I come and stand at every door
(Then you've seen me) I always leave with less than I had before
(Then you've seen me) but I can make you smile when the blood it hits the floor
Tell me friend can you ask for anything more
Tell me friend can you ask for anything more

Have you ever seen a scarecrow filled with nothing but dust and weeds
If you've ever seen that scarecrow then you've seen me
Have you ever seen a one armed man punchin' at nothing but the breeze
If you've ever seen a one armed man then you've seen me

(Then you've seen me) I come and stand at every door
(Then you've seen me) I always leave with less than I had before
(Then you've seen me) but I can make you smile when the blood it hits the floor
Tell me friend can you ask for anything more
Tell me friend can you ask for anything more

These things that have comforted me I drive away (anything more)
This place that is my home I cannot stay (anything more)
My only faith is in the broken bones and bruises I display

Have you ever seen a one legged man tryin' to dance his way free
If you've ever seen a one legged man then you've seen me