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Ghost Of Tom Joad


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3 new from CDN$ 17.20 11 used from CDN$ 0.01

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Nov. 21 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Music Canada Inc.
  • ASIN: B000002BFL
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #23,184 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Ghost Of Tom Joad
2. Straight Time
3. Highway 29
4. Youngstown
5. Sinaloa Cowboys
6. The Line
7. Balboa Park
8. Day Lightning
9. The New Timer
10. Across The Border
11. Galveston Bay
12. My Best Was Never Good Enough


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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Audio Cassette Verified Purchase
Anyone who considers themselves a fan of Bruce Springsteen (particularly those who enjoy Nebraska) NEEDS this album: a true Classic.
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Format: Audio CD
When 'The Rising' came out I went back and bought all of Springsteen's past collection. I came across 'The Ghost Of Tom Joad' and sat down to listen to it, not really knowing what is was about. It really blew me away, and for the first time I actually felt like I was pulled in to the album, thanks to Bruce's brilliant song writing. You listen to an album like this, which is so beautifully crafted, and then listen to basically any song from pop bands, you will be put into a new light. This is how music is suposed to sound, intimate, fun, and emotional. I can honestly say, if you buy this record you won't be sorry.
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Format: Audio CD
Bruce Springsteen's a reliable rocker. His lyrics aren't always the best, and his voice could use a little touchup, but people love him anyway. Why? He sings about the common man. And he's talented as hell.
On "The Ghost of Tom Joad," Springsteen finds himself at his peak--even if he had to leave the rock arena to do it. Sure, his electric guitar-fueled rockers are superb (find one rocker who's had a more lasting impression on various generations, past and present, than the Boss; and if you say McCartney, I'm gonna hit you). However, these gentle (mostly) acoustic numbers are sublime--graceful folk/country songs that sound the bells for the downtrodden (and Springsteen's multi-instrumental talent).
"Straight Time," for example, deals with a former criminal who can't seem to live a decent life; "Highway 29", about a fateful Bonnie and Clyde couple; "Youngstown," about a factory worker who needs a reprieve; "The Line," about a border guard who falls in love with a refugee; "My Best Was Never Good Enough," a darkly humorous tune about a man who just can't win, no matter what advice he's been given; and several other songs, most about immigrants and their troubles.
Yeah, it's a little opressing at first. Springsteen can be that way, when he's writing from his soul. And the album never really picks up, tempo-wise. It's not something you're gonna party to; but if you want good quality music, that'll make you think about yourself and the world, and shine a better light on your relations with others, then "The Ghost of Tom Joad" is your album.
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By Jesse on April 19 2004
Format: Audio CD
As far as I am concerned, this is the best album Bruce has ever made. As I own practically every album he has released, I am speaking with some knowledge.
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Format: Audio CD
The Ghost of Tom Joad is one of the most haunting albums I have ever listened to. It was in fact listening to this album that I noticed the tremendous influence he has had on so many of our great singer/songwriters. The music on Ghost is tremendously affecting. It is Springsteen without his pop-enthusiasm. The songs are bare, and his tremendous talents as a songwriter really stand out for all to see. Ghost is a great album that showcases the considerable talents of one of our great songwriters.
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Format: Audio CD
For those that entered the vast body of Springsteen's work through Born in the USA or Born to Run, this is going to be a shock to the system. Where on his most popular albums Boss engaged in fast cars and girls and other images of glory, on this (and the album it is sequel to, Nebraska) he strips it down to accoustic instruments and analyzes the darker side of America. These are stories of desparation, of crossing the border not into New York City (as on Born to Run) but into the promised land of the U.S from Mexico and finding only dead end jobs and tragedy and loneliness. The best part though is that Bruce's rough, ragged voice mirrors that loneliness and desparation, just barely raising it above a whisper. In all these stories, Bruce tells stories of people that anyone can relate to, because though their conditions are extreme, we all face the emotions these characters face. And clearly Bruce has faced them too, as he confronts each song with the right amount of articulate acting out.
The bottom line is this album is for all those adventerous Bruce Springsteen fans out there who loved Nebraska. It's also for everyone who loves accoustic music and the brave songwriters like Bob Dylan and Neil Young and Phil Ochs and all those others who took political chances in their music and sang without fierce screaming, but with soft, lonely, vocal tones. Its an essential and it will make you feel like your in the rough, lonely, world of a middle of nowhere working class town like Youngstown.
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Format: Audio CD
Bruce Springsteen's 1995 release "The Ghost Of Tom Joad" is almost always compared to his haunting 1982 masterpiece "Nebraska," and for obvious reasons; the form and mood of "Tom Joad" is the same as its predecessor--a bare minimum of instrumentation and the same desperate, gloomy, brilliant subject matter. But "Nebraska" had something this album doesn't--the former was spontaneous and unexpected, while "Tom Joad" was planned and anticipated. "Nebraska" was perhaps most effective because it followed the success of his mainstream hits like "Born To Run" and "The River," and its strictly vocal/acoustic/harmonica approach made it brilliantly different from Springsteen's previous chart-toppers. And that's where "The Ghost Of Tom Joad" fails; it simply cannot be viewed as genius as "Nebraska," because the public was ready for it, and already knew the power that the 1982 album spawned.
Aside from that, this album surely isn't a disappointment; it is stark, bold, and magnificently eerie, despite the slightly expanded instrumentation (at least when compared to the bare form of "Nebraska"). Outstanding compositions like the title track, 'Across the Border,' and 'My Best Was Never Good Enough' are all superb, while as a whole, the album holds up strongly as a testament to Springsteen's crusade for the downtrodden. Though it doesn't exceed "Nebraska," "The Ghost Of Tom Joad" is perfect for a sequel.
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