Springsteen: Born To Run Production Notes

Production Notes

The making of Born To Run was a particularly lengthy process, with rehearsals beginning in Jan '74 at 914 Studios, Blauvelt, New York. Recording sessions began in earnest in May, though Springsteen has said that in his desire to make his magnum opus he got into 'an unhealthy amount of obsessive compulsiveness about the process'. Both Springsteen and manager-producer Mike Appel were frustrated by the studio facilities, and issues such as the movement of the piano pedal being audible in the mix.


Sax player Clarence Clemons as pictured on the sleeve of his 1989 solo album A Night With Mr C

To add to these problems, keyboard player David Sancious and drummer Ernest 'Boom' Carter left the band during the sessions and so Springsteen recruited Roy Bittan on keyboards and drummer Max Weinberg as full-time band members.

In a review of Springsteen's previous album Jon Landau criticised the production as being too thin, and opined that Springsteen needed help to achieve the sounds that were in his head. He suggested, after 14 months work on the album, they should switch studios to the more expensive but better equipped Record Plant in Manhattan. Appel was initially unhappy about his involvement, but Landau, who had some production knowledge, sat in on sessions from April and his input earned him a credit as co-producer.

Most of the album was recorded in these later sessions. Springsteen worked closely with saxophonist Clemons on 'Jungleland', but Mr C's wonderful solo on the track took 16 hours of work and the editing down of eight or nine takes. The album was completed in July 1975, although some final mixing took place when the band had gone out on tour.