In 1983, there was a Hollywood movie about a Jersey club band that sounded an awful lot like Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band. It was called “Eddie and the Cruisers.” For the soundtrack, they turned, not to a Jersey band (that would have been too obvious), but to John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band, from Rhode Island.
But let’s not hold that against them. The soundtrack was actually pretty good, and spawned two hit singles: “On the Dark Side” and “Tender Years.”
Another song from the album, the ballad “Boardwalk Angel,” is actually set in Jersey.
“Meet me out on the boardwalk tonight/Meet me down by the sea/We can dance in the carnival lights/On the shores of Jersey/We’ll fall in love on a carousel/Little boardwalk angel,” sings Cafferty, who doesn’t actually appear in the movie (the band’s singer is played by Michael Paré). Check the song out below.
I actually saw Cafferty perform live for the first time in December, and was impressed. You can catch up with him at his website, JohnCafferty.com.
New Jersey celebrated its 350th birthday in 2014. And in the 350 Jersey Songs series, we marked the occasion by posting 350 songs — one a day, from September 2014 to September 2015 — that have something to do with the state, its musical history, or both. To see the entire list, click here.