We Are The World

When you’re young, you can get obsessed with a song. Sometimes a song will get inside you and become a part of you. All you do is sing it in your head, out loud to anyone that would listen, and when it comes on the radio or makes it into your favorite playlist, you could just about die. That’s exactly how my much younger cousin Patrick felt about Bruce Springsteen’s version of Jimmy Cliff’s “Trapped” on We Are The World.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy Bruce Springsteen, particularly his earlier stuff with The E Street Band. I also enjoy singing along (in my head) when the song comes on the radio…but I can’t stand it when someone sings the lyrics and gets some of the words wrong! I understand getting some of the verses incorrect, maybe throwing an extra participle in there or turning a verb into an adverb. But this was the chorus, the part that is sung the loudest and the most often.

“Trapped” is a live recording on the We Are The World album that was recorded somewhere in New Jersey, probably. Starts out with your typical Bruce Springsteen strumming at the guitar, mumbling a gravelly first verse as each of the other instruments slowly start coming in. After 90 seconds, Bruce explodes into a chorus of “…and now I’m trapped! Ooh yeah!”

Vacationing in the Summer with my Aunt and Uncle, we would drive around in their Volkswagen Jetta. There were 3 tapes in the car:

  1. Gordon Lightfoot’s Greatest Hits
  2. One of Danielle Steele’s books on tape
  3. USA For Africa’s We Are The World

No kids would even admit to liking Gordon Lightfoot and Danielle Steele was certainly out of the question…leaving us with We Are The World. I could think of worse things to listen to. At least this album had a variety of musical tastes to appease all the ears that were in the car.

There was some Huey Lewis & The News, Prince, and Canadian super-group Northern Lights. When Northern Lights “Tears Are Not Enough” would come on, Patrick would elbow me in my side, “Do you know what’s coming up next Cousin Tim? Do you?”

He said it so often that I would sometimes play dumb and say, “No, what’s up next?”

Patrick would proudly say, “Trapped, by The Boss!”

Endearing at first, it became grating quite quickly and I began to loathe hearing the song come from the car’s speakers. Without fail, the song would start and about 90 seconds in, wherever Patrick was, singing along at the top of his lungs, “…and now I’m shot! Ooh yeah!”

Every time I heard it, my hand would imaginably slap my forehead. First time was cute, and after correction, the 99th time was cringe-inducing. Good thing the vacation only lasted about a week after that.

We Are The WorldUSA For Africa7:07
If Only For The Moment, GirlSteve Perry3:46
Just A Little CloserThe Pointer Sisters3:55
TrappedBruce Springsteen & The E Street Band5:14
Tears Are Not EnoughNorthern Lights4:23
4 The Tears In Your EyesPrince & The Revolution2:49
Good For NothingChicago3:37
Total ControlTina Turner3:39
A Little More LoveKenny Rogers2:55
Trouble In ParadiseHuey Lewis & The News4:35