-- Inner City Front (1981) & (2002)--

Track Listing:
Click song titles to see lyrics, other albums the song appears on, and known comments by Bruce Cockburn on the song. Track lengths are not guaranteed as they occasionally change with format (i.e. CD/vinyl) and release version.
* Denotes bonus tracks on the remastered CD version released by Rounder Records late 2002.

[1] You Pay Your Money and You Take Your Chance (4:19)
[2] The Strong One (6:03)
[3] All's Quiet on the Inner City Front (5:27)
[4] Radio Shoes (4:16)
[5] Wanna Go Walking (2:53)
[6] And We Dance (4:45)
[7] Justice (4:49)
[8] Broken Wheel (4:39)
[9] Loner (7:38)
[10] The Coldest Night Of The Year * (4:24)
[11] The Light Goes On Forever * (6:51)

Order the 'Inner City Front' (1981) album or the remastered 2002 edition from now.
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Album Info:

All songs written by Bruce Cockburn
© 1981 Golden Mountain Music Corp. (SOCAN)
All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission
Produced by Bruce Cockburn for True North Productions
Associate Producer: Bernie Finkelstein

The musicians are:
Bruce Cockburn: Guitar and Vocals
Memo Acevedo: Percussion
Bob DiSalle: Drums
Dennis Pendrith: Bass guitar
Jon Goldsmith: Keyboards
Hugh Marsh: Violin and Mandolin
Kathryn Moses: Reeds and Background Vocals
Murray McLauchlan: Background Vocals on "Wanna Go Walking"
Ruhollah Khomeini: Additional Percussion on "Justice"
M. Kaddafi: Additional Background Vocals on "The Strong One"

Engineered by Gary Gray
Mastered by George Marino, Sterling Sound, NY
Remastered by Vlado Meller, Sony Music Studio Operations, NY
Recorded at Manta Sound, Toronto, April-June 1981

Art Direction: Bart Schoales
Back Cover Photo: George Whiteside

Special thanks to Shorewood Packaging, Toronto
Thanks for the help, Jimmy!

Remaster Info:
Digitally remastered at the E Room in Toronto by engineer Peter Moore, utilizing 24-bit technology.
New liner note essay written by Nicholas Jennings.
Released by Rounder Records 19 November 2002.

19 November 2002 - From Rounder Records: Bruce Cockburn self-produced the nine tracks of rock, reggae, jazz and folk-fusions that form "Inner City Front", originally released in 1981. Now re-mastered with two bonus tracks, it could be called the artist's Toronto album since it reflects so strongly his move to the city and his embrace of both its attractions and tensions. "Inner City Front" contains some of the most carefree love songs of his career, including a B-52s-like rocker "Wanna Go Walking," the flute-filled "And We Dance," and the infectious "Coldest Night of the Year," which finally joins the album for which it was originally intended. "The Light Goes On Forever" is also included as a bonus track, having been previously available only as a B-side. Produced by Bruce Cockburn.

  • Circa 2008
    CBC radio's Inside The Music takes a detailed look at Inner City Front.
    Includes interviews with Bruce and Bernie as well as Hugh Marsh, Kathryn Moses and Eugene Martynec. Recorded the summer of 2008.
    ( )

    Known comments by Bruce Cockburn about this album, by date:

  • Circa 1986

    "General concern became focused on Central America at this point, partly through reading (e.g. early poems of Ernesto Cardenal), then, most dramatically, as a result of travel to the region. Did I get "politicized"? There's an "-ism" and an "-ized" for everything, and none of them mean that much to me. If what government does affects a person's life as much as their work does or their lover does, then it seems to me it's equally fair game for comment in a song."
    -- from the World Of Wonders Tour Program, circa 1986. Submitted by Rob Caldwell.

  • 2 November 1991

    Q:Have you noticed a transition in your music from a rural kind of music to.. the latest album is "Inner City Front" and the whole.. the setting is so city.

    BC: Yeah, well, that's where I'm spending my time... yeah, it makes difference to the surface of things, but also... it's kind of on purpose. I spent a long time holding up nature as a source of oppsoition to the things that confront most of us in our daily lives. Two things. One, I kinda said all I had to say about that at the time, and also I found that people tended to make too big an issue of the nature part of it. They were missing the point, because not everybody... people thought I was writing about nature... So it just seemed like the two things together made me want to go for something closer to most people's experience, including my own, 'cause I grew up in the city...

    -- from Bruce Cockburn Interview, The Old Waldorf, San Francisco, CA, 2 November 1981. Transcribed by Charles Wolff. Anonymous Submission.

  • November 1999

    Steve Lawson: So the addition of electric stuff happened around Humans, or Inner City Front...?

    BC: Inner City Front was really the big one. There's electric guitar on many of the earlier albums, but it didn't start to take over until I was playing with heavier bands with more drums and more emphasis on rhythm, and then it was an irresistible pressure to pick up the electric guitar - to hear myself on stage for one thing - but also to keep up in intensity with the other guys. There was a big learning process in there. On Inner City Front I got away with it, but there's a lot of learning in front of people going on. I was applying the same techniques to the electric as I used on the acoustic, but there's a big difference in touch and it took some time to kind of get the feel for it.
    -- from Bruce Cockburn Interview, Guitarist Magazine, November, 1999, by Steve Lawson.

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    This page is part of The Cockburn Project, a unique website that exists to document the work of Canadian singer-songwriter and musician Bruce Cockburn. The Project archives self-commentary by Cockburn on his songs and music, and supplements this core part of the website with news, tour dates, and other current information.