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The Living End playing Duckboard Place, Melbourne Australia
Photo by Ros O'Gorman

A Bruce Springsteen Discussion Turns Into A Living End Collaboration

By Paul Cashmere
Mon, 01 Aug 2011 22:30:25 +1000

The Living End’s Chris Cheney has done something he hasn’t done before, collaborated on a song.

The title track from ‘The Ending Is Just the Beginning Repeating’ is a collaboration with The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn. Chris tells us how it came about.


“After we finished touring ‘White Noise’ I felt like I needed to get out of St Kilda East,” he says. I needed to get out of my little comfort zone of writing and in order to get inspired I felt because we had some time off finally it would be a good idea to either get in the car and drive to Woodend or go to New York at the other end of the spectrum to do some writing”.

Chris was after a break. “It was more of an adventure than anything else,” he says. “Just rent an apartment in Chelsea for three months, ride the subway, just become a New Yorker, write as many songs as I can and see if I could get something out of it. I hooked up with John Agnello who produced ‘White Noise’ and he produced all of The Hold Steady Records. I said to him ‘look I really want to get together with some different people and write some songs and see what comes of it. He hooked me up with Craig”.

The origins of the song started in a New York bar. “We got together in a bar first and had a chat about our favourite artists and favourite songs. We pretty much spent the entire conversation talking about Springsteen who he has played on stage with. I said let’s get together and write a song and if nothing comes of it, don’t worry about it. So the following week I got on the tube and went out to Brooklyn and sat in his little apartment”.

The song had already begun back in Melbourne but hadn’t been developed. “I played him a bunch of ideas that we demoed here and that was one of them. At that point it was more like an Iron Maiden kind of riff with that title. I had “we are the wounded soldiers” as the first line and he just went “that one, lets work on that”. He is a great lyricist.

VIDEO: The Living End, Paul Cashmere talks to Chris Cheney:

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