"Gypsy Biker" as written by and Bruce Springsteen....
The speculators made their money on the blood you shed
Your momma's pulled the sheets up off your bed
Profiteers on James Street sold your shoes and clothes
Ain't nobody talkin' because everybody knows
We pulled your cycle up back the garage and polished up the chrome*
Our gypsy biker coming home

Sister Mary sits with your colors, but Johnny's drunk and gone
This old town's been rousted, which side you on?
They would march up over the hill, this old fools parade
Shouting victory for the righteous for you must hear the grace
Ain't nobody talkin', but just waiting on the phone
Gypsy biker coming home

We rode into the foothills, Bobby brought the gasoline
We stood around the circle as she lit up the ravine
The spring hot desert wind rushed down on us all the way back home

To the dead, well it don't matter much 'bout who's wrong or right
You asked me that question, I didn't get it right
You slipped into your darkness, now all that remains
Is my love for you brother, life's still unchanged
To him that threw you away, you ain't nothing but gone
My gypsy biker's coming home

And now I'm out countin' white lines
Countin' white lines and getting stoned
My gypsy biker's coming home

La la la la


Lyrics submitted by delial, edited by mkell

"Gypsy Biker" as written by Bruce Springsteen

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Downtown Music Publishing

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Gypsy Biker song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentThis is THE masterpiece off of "Magic," in my opinion--both musically and lyrically. It gave me that rare combination of goosebumps and tears the first time I heard it on October 2.

    The people (note the "we") telling this story are undoubtedly some of gypsy biker's closest friends. He joined the military and found himself in Iraq and died there.

    It's definitely a political song, but I think the social commentary is much more pronounced ("To the dead, well it don't matter much 'bout who's wrong or right"). It is about the human toll. The little tragedies taking place across this country.

    Although this song is certainly going to remain a part of the main set of the shows that flow from "Magic," it would be interesting to hear it follow "Born to Run." That song is almost certainly about a "gypsy biker" of sorts who wanted to get away from what he knew.

    Interestingly, "Magic" (the album) almost seems like the converse of "Born to Run." Both have this unmistakable sense of urgency, but the '75 masterpiece was all about leaving whereas the '07 newcomer is about returning from whence we came.

    Only to find that from whence we came no longer remains.
    magicrat34on October 11, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe best thing with this song is to listen to "Shut out the Light" right before it, which was the B side to Born in the USA if you have the record as a single. That song is about a guy coming home from Vietnam, he's not dead, but he may as well be. The songs even share a lyric, in that one it says "Bobby pulled his Ford out of the garage and they polished up the chrome." In that song the vet comes home to everything he loved and after the horrors of war he is not the same person. "He stares across the lights of the city and dreams of where he's been." This song tells a similar story, but this time he returns in a coffin. Beautiful song, excellently written. Bruce once again proves his ability to not only interpret the present, but put it in the scope of the past. Listen to "Shut out the Light" and then "Gypsy Biker." Scary to think we can make the same mistake twice...
    ScubaDooon December 10, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe tears and goosebumps comments are so appropriate. With a son in the British Army I find it especially powerful - what a terrible price these young men and their families pay for politics. I like the echoes with Born to Run, where the highways, cars and bikes offered a means of escape. I used to hope that I could live in a Bruce Springsteen song. Now, I think I maybe do...
    vamboon March 05, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is about a kid coming home from Iraq in a coffin
    wesg01on October 06, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentmagicrat34, as Meat Loaf once said "You Took The Words Right Out Of MY Mouth". Perfectly summed up. This is the best track on "Magic". Tears and goosebumps everytime. Brilliant.

    Springsteen, the greatest.
    The Magic Raton October 27, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentbest song on Magic hands down. classic.
    MathiasCronqviston November 26, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAgree with all that's been said and just had to add my voice to those proclaiming this song as a masterpiece. Wonder if Dubya's heard it...
    TheMinstrelBoyon May 13, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Comment
    "You slipped into your darkness, now all that remains
    Is my love for you brother, lying still and unchanged"

    I think that in those lines, he's talking about America as well as the fallen soldier. He's saying that as a country we're going into a dark place, but his love for his country will always still be there.

    also i think these lines actually go:
    The favored march up over the hill, in some fool's parade
    Shouting victory for the righteous, but there ain't much here but graves

    guns135on June 09, 2009   Link

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