Music Routes Blog

Blinded By The Light Project: A Glimmer Of Hope

24 April 2009

<Yesterday, I wrote that I might have to relax the rules to achieve the third and final goal of the Blinded By The Light Project.

In the intervening time, new information has increased the chances of avoiding such an ignominious action.

While watching this video of Manfred Mann's Earth Band performing "Blinded By The Light" on The Midnight Special, I noticed that there were female backing vocals near the end of the song.

There were no female backing vocalists visible on the set that I could see.  If the backing vocals were being performed live, they sure managed to be hard to see and silent (or inaudible) for quite a while.  But if they were pre-recorded, it was an odd choice for something to insert into a live performance unless they were also on the studio recording.

I listened to the studio recording again and, sure enough, the female backing vocals made an appearance in the same spot near the end of the song.

This means that there are more musicians on the track than just the ones I listed yesterday!  More musicians means more possibilities of shortening the route between it and the Bruce Springsteen version.

The Roaring Silence credits Doreen Chanter, Irene Chanter, and Suzanne Lynch with backing vocals on the album, but not on any specific song.  I went to Amoeba Records in San Francisco and purchased a used copy of The Best Of Manfred Mann's Earth Band.  It credits those three with backing vocals on "Blinded By The Light" and that's good enough for me unless and until a more reliable source is found.

In addition, Mick Rogers is credited with background vocals on the track too.  This is corroborated by Rogers's own site.  (Unfortunately, his site does not list "Questions" as a song that he performed on—the Best Of credits list him for that song.  Either the site's information is incomplete or the CD credits are not quite correct.)

Brief tangent: The change I received when I purchased the Manfred Mann's Earth Band disc included Washington, D.C. quarters which feature Duke Ellington.

So, making what we can from the information available, it appears that the musicians on the Manfred Mann's Earth Band version are:

The musicians on the Bruce Springsteen version are:

The challenge is to find a recorded song that has at least one musician from the first list and one musician from the second list.