Bruce Springsteen lyrics -- Bruce Springsteen shows -- Bruce Springsteen records

Song title: How can a poor man stand such times and live?

(Blind Alfred Reed) by Blind Alfred Reed RCA VICTOR Vi V-40236, 1929

How can a poor man stand such times and live?

Well, the doctor comes 'round here with his face all bright
And he says "in a little while you'll be alright"
All he gives is a humbug pill, a dose of dope and a great big bill
Tell me, how can a poor man stand such times and live?
He says "me and my old school pals had some might high times down here
And what happened to you poor black folks, well it just ain't fair"
He took a look around gave a little pep talk, said "I'm with you" then he took a little walk
Tell me, how can a poor man stand such times and live?
There's bodies floatin' on Canal and the levees gone to Hell
Martha, get me my sixteen gauge and some dry shells
Them who's got got out of town
And them who ain't got left to drown
Tell me, how can a poor man stand such times and live?
I got family scattered from Texas all the way to Baltimore
And I ain't got no home in this world no more
Gonna be a judgment that's a fact, a righteous train rollin' down this track
Tell me, how can a poor man stand such times and live?

Notes: Last verses are original by Bruce, written for New Orleans' flood in 2004. This are the lyrics referring to Bruce version.


Statistics from the KILLING FLOOR (www.brucespringsteen.it) database


This song has never been published on any official release.

First known live performance: 13/04/2006 Convention Hall, Asbury Park,NJ ,USA
Last known live performance: 06/05/2014 Cynthia Woods Michelle Pavillion, Houston,TX ,USA

Song 'history':


Played during the rehearsals for the We shall overcome / The Seeger session tour, in Mar/Apr 2006.
Bruce performed this song during each show of the The Seeger Session tour
Bruce gave this song one only shot through the Wrecking Ball tour (29/04/2012 Jazz and Heritage Festival, New Orleans,LA ,USA)
Two only performances during the High Hopes tour (03/05/2014 Jazz and Heritage Festival, New Orleans,LA ,USA and 06/05/2014 Cynthia Woods Michelle Pavillion, Houston,TX ,USA)

The song was also played in informal happenings or off-tour appearances
Data from the www.brucespringsteen.it database