Sparks Fly On E Street: Bruce Springsteen, “Maria’s Bed” (2005)

I kind of love everything about this track. The fact that the guy’s got this one bit of redemption to hang his hat on, that the song acquires a nice bit of lift with the keyboards and backing vocals, and that Bruce lets the descriptive phrases tumble out freely, reminding me of the first couple of records. I suppose some folks might not like this one because of the twang-infused vocals. To each his own. Me, I’ve always liked it when Bruce takes on a different persona in that way.

Why “Maria’s Bed” has barely seen the light of day outside of the Devils & Dust tour is something of a mystery. I always thought it would be an absolute blast played with the full band. That “Why doesn’t he?” question gets a lot of play in the era of online setlist watching. Some want to believe that Bruce is being lazy about it. I dunno, but with the current three (and sometimes four) guitar lineup, they could burn the house down with this one.

Embedded video is from the 2013 Belfast pre-show, with Bruce trying to work it out, and then finally getting it right. Very nice indeed.

Up next: Silver Palomino

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to, and Salon, he originated several of our weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at
Mark Saleski
  • “Maria’s Bed” is one of his best latter day compositions and why it continues to remain absent in his playlists is beyond me. Devils & Dust in general must either be something he holds close to his vest or it’s a point of contention with someone