Mike Ness - If You Leave Before Me

First performance: 17/05/2008


Bruce performed the song only once: 
2008-05-17 Stone Pony (The), Asbury Park, NJ
In between leg 3 and 4 of the "Magic" tour,  Bruce joins Mike Ness onstage for four songs. 

Bruce also contributed to the studio recording of this song, providing duet vocals and guitar. Mike Ness recorded his album at Ocean Way Studios in Los Angeles, CA. Springsteen joined Ness in studio on 29 Dec 1998 to record his parts. 


If You Leave Before Me, is taken from the album Cheating at Solitaire, the first solo album from Social Distortion frontman Mike Ness. Released in 1999, it bypasses much of Social Distortion's punk muscle in favor of a more roots-oriented approach to rock and roll. It features cameos by Bruce Springsteen, Brian Setzer, and members of Royal Crown Revue. Johnny Cash was invited to perform on the song "Ballad of a Lonely Man", but was too ill to record at the time. 

Other cover versions

Bruce on the artist

Springsteen has long been a major fan of Southern California punk/rave band Social Distortion. He touted their album Somewhere Between Heaven And Hell as his favorite record of the year in a Rolling Stone interview in 1992.
Bruce had 4 performances with lead singer Mike Ness : 


If you leave this world before
A promise to you I shall keep
I won't fall in love with another one
Over your ashes I shall weep

If you leave before
A promise I never will tell
About all the things we talked about
Our dark secrets I'll keep well

Aren't you glad, there ain't nobody listening?
Aren't you glad, that no one seems to care what we do?
Aren't you glad there ain't no one here to tell us what's right or
While we sit and we talk about nothing

What if there's no God in Heaven?
What if there's no God at all?
I promise these last years of loving you
Will be the best years of them all

This don't look like Heaven
I'm surrounded by fiery walls
For if I were to live here without you
That'd be the greatest sin of them all

(Repeat Chorus)