On Glee tonight, the students, alumni and faculty of McKinley High will remember their classmate, Finn Hudson. He was played memorably by Cory Monteith and his death a few months ago was heartbreaking. I listened today to the songs that will be part of the play list. One of the songs, called No Surrender, struck a chord, even though I did not think I’d heard it before. I was surprised to find out that not only is it a cover of a Bruce Springsteen song, that song is on the Born in the U.S.A. album, an album that I listened to more than enough that you’d think I wouldn’t forget a single song. But then again, old people forget things.
So I just watched a YouTube video of the Boss singing the song in concert in 1984. He opens talking about the song and at one point says, “What keeps people human is their ability to keep people dreaming about things.” And of course, watching the video, takes me back to the days and nights driving down Penn blasting Dancing in the Dark and Born in the U.S.A. and Glory Days, singing at the top of my lungs. I know how much my dreams meant to me then and I know how much they mean to me now.
So, with all due respect to the cast of Glee, here is the original. It’s a beautiful, haunting elegy and when I watch him sing it, for a moment anyway, I’m 16 again.