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Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)

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Title: Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)  
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Subject: The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle, Bruce Springsteen, The Rising Tour, Born in the U.S.A. Tour, Darkness Tour
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Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)

"Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)"
Single by Bruce Springsteen
from the album The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle
B-side "Night"
Released September 11, 1973 (album)
1979 (single)
Recorded 1973 at 914 Sound Studios in Blauvelt, New York[1]
Genre Rock
Length 7:04
Label Columbia Records
Producer(s) Mike Appel, Jim Cretecos
Bruce Springsteen singles chronology
"Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)"
"Hungry Heart"

"Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)" is a 1973 song by Bruce Springsteen, from his The Wild, the Innocent, & the E Street Shuffle album, and is especially famed as a concert number for Springsteen and The E Street Band. The song, which clocks in at just over seven minutes, is a story of forbidden love between the singer and the titular Rosalita, whose parents disapprove of his life in a rock and roll band. It is included on the compilation albums The Essential Bruce Springsteen and Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band Greatest Hits.


  • Reception 1
  • Music video 2
  • Live performances 3
  • Notes 4
  • External links 5


Never released as a single in U.S. and generally unknown upon its initial album release, "Rosalita" began to get Uncut magazine has called it "One of the great rock'n roll performances, and as close to a perfect song as anyone's ever recorded," while Chris T-T in the same publication declared "Never mind The Beatles or The Rolling Stones, this is the best rock'n roll track of all time." [4] The song is one of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. Its music video occupies the #71 spot on Rolling Stone's 1993 list of the top 100 videos [5]

The aggregation of critics' lists at placed this song at number 2259 on their list of the top 6000 songs of all time.[6]

Despite often being claimed as not being released as a single, "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)" was in fact released as a single in the Netherlands and some other European countries in 1979.[7][8][9]

Music video

In 1984, many years after the song's initial release, MTV began showing a music video for the song. The video was a straight concert performance (from a Darkness Tour performance on July 8, 1978 at the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix, Arizona) that included band introductions and numerous adoring females rushing the stage. While only adequate technically, the video captured the energy and playfulness of Springsteen and the E Street Band in concert, and was the first such introduction many casual fans had.

Live performances

For many years, dating back virtually to when the song was written, "Rosalita" always closed the regular set in Springsteen concerts, often elongated to incorporate extended band introductions. It was the one "sure thing" in a Springsteen set list and celebrated as such. Steven Van Zandt used this time to shine on backing vocals, as his voice changed on performances of the song from the Born To Run Tours to the The River Tour.

However, on October 19, 1984 in the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington, during the Born in the U.S.A. Tour, this suddenly changed; "Rosalita" was dropped from the show, not to reappear. Springsteen biographer Dave Marsh said this was done to "disrupt the ritual expectations of the fanatic fans [...] establishing through a burst of creativity just who was boss [...] he'd liberated the show from an albatross, a song that was too long and had long since stopped breathing." [10]

"Rosalita" in the swamps of Jersey: House lights up for the final song of the May 21, 2009 show at Izod Center.

For many years, "Rosalita" made only rare or sporadic appearances, leading to fans campaigning for the song to be played by holding banners or placards saying "Let Rosie Come Out Tonight!" during shows. Springsteen occasionally granted the wish, though, such as during the last show of the above-mentioned tour in 1985 at the Working on a Dream Tour. Steve Van Zandt was now officially back to background vocals on this song, going to Bruce's mic with great confidence, giving the song an even more upbeat vibe.


  1. ^ "Brucebase, On the Tracks: The Wild the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle". Retrieved 2007-07-27. 
  2. ^ Emerson, Ken. "The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle". 
  3. ^ Christgau, Robert. "The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle". 
  4. ^ "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)". Reason to Rock. 
  5. ^ """Rolling Stone: "The 100 Top Music Videos. Rock on the Net. 
  6. ^ "Acclaimed Music Top 3000 songs". 27 May 2009. 
  7. ^ "Bruce Springsteen - (Come Out Tonight) (Vinyl) at Discogs".  
  8. ^ " - Bruce Springsteen - Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)"., Hung Medien. Retrieved 2012-02-07. 
  9. ^ "Bruce Springsteen Discography : ROSALITA / RACING IN THE STREET - NIGHT - CBS1277532"., Bruce Springsteen Database - Killing Floor. Retrieved 2012-02-07. 
  10. ^ Glory Days, p. 275

External links

  • Lyrics and audio clips from
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