Bridge of Sighs

Album: Bridge Of Sighs (1974)

Songfacts®:

  • This was inspired by the famous Ponte de Sospiri bridge in Venice, also known as the "Bridge of Sighs." The bridge got its name in the 17th century, when prisoners who passed through it on their way to the prison cells on the other side would most likely see the beautiful sight of the lagoon and the island of San Giorgio and freedom for the last time.
  • Trower explained: "The funny thing about the title song is that I had the opening guitar riff for about six months before I could come up with the turnaround section. I loved that opening lick so much. I was determined to make the second half just as perfect. So I waited and waited... and then it came to me. The band played it for the first time at Winterland in San Francisco and we received something like a 10 minute standing ovation. It obviously had magic." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Mountlake Terrace, Washington, for above 2
  • There is a poem called Bridge Of Sighs by the 19th century author Thomas Hood. The poem is about a woman who fell out of love with her husband and was discovered having an affair. The woman was removed from the house and was forced to live on the street. Choosing death, she threw herself in the River Thames. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Dale - Kent, OH
  • "Bridge of Sighs" was the name of a horse, which is how Trower discovered it. "I was in the middle of writing that piece of music, and I was reading the paper one day, and there was a horse at a horse race that was recommended as a favorite, and it was called Bridge of Sighs," he told Songfacts. "I just thought, 'Wow, what a great title for a song.'

    So, when I started to work on the lyric, I incorporated that. I already had the piece of music written - the idea of what I wanted it to be like."
  • Vocals on this song were by Trower's bass player, James Dewar, who was in his band throughout the '70s. Rounding out the band was drummer Reg Isidore.
  • Matthew Fisher, who was Trower's bandmate in Procol Harum, produced the album. The engineer was Geoff Emerick, known for his work with The Beatles.

Comments: 20

  • Hobart1979 from IndianaAnother in a long line of rock gods who should be in the HoF. It's a travesty that he isn't. Someone below said something about unfair comparisons to Jimi Hendrix. How is that unfair? Hendrix was one of the best ever, as is Trower; the white Jimi Hendrix I call him. He is one of the all-time greats. Get him in the HOf, along with Bad Company, UFO, Blue Oyster Cult, Ronnie Montrose, and so many other deserving rockers.
  • Viking67 from Qns New YorkRobin trower was and is a great band.ihave loved the band from the 70s , when my brother turned me on to them. Long live trower and my brother bob..love you brother.
  • Ral from IdFrip from Ca, may be a "mandela effect" change to these lyrics. I could be wrong but my question is what is that background voice saying? Is he rewading the poem "Bridge of Sighs"? That was my 1st guess. Thank you anyone to reply that knows.
  • Patti from AlgonacGreat song by a true master of the guitar. I love it, but I would also love for "Day Of The Eagle" to be added to this site. I'd love to learn more about that song, too.
  • Frip from CaEvery web lyric gets it wrong. It's not: "Been A long time crossing bridge of sighs." It's: "Been NO long time crossing bridge of sighs." The point being that the darkness never goes away. "A long time" would mean the sadness doesn't come around much. Not at all the meaning. Why am I the only person to hear and understand things!
  • Dajanye from CaCan you answer Robs questions below about the low voices? My Da has been wondering for 46 years now.
  • Rob from TexasIf you listen closely to the outro you can hear very faint voices. Has anyone ever isolated and/or parsed them?
  • Veeradithya from IndiaHas anyone heard the cover by OPETH? Beautiful if you ask me!
  • Mike from Carrollton, TxWas at work and "Day of the Eagle" shot into my head. Then today, heard it on VH1 Classic, had to listen to the to whole album again, brought me back to where I was int 70's.... TOO ROLLING STONED!! Trower is a master, and Dewar's vocals do this whole masterpiece! One of my all time favorite albums.
  • J Cole from Pemigewasset Valley, Nh Great song to drive to on a foggy night. Followed closely by Zeppe's "In The Light".
  • Harold from San Bernadino, CaBridge of Sighs is timeless-----what a great track as well as a great album! It sounds just as fresh today as it did in '74.
  • Oldpink from New Castle, InNow, THIS is what it's all about.
    Trower's downright terrifying guitars at the opening, then Dewar's bass vocals kick in, and you get goosebumps marching down your arms.
    btw...I think that Dewar's voice sounds quite a lot like Kenny Wayne Shepherd's vocalist, before Kenny started singing his own songs, that is.
  • Max from Lockport, LaSaw Robin Trower In New Orleans at HOB in Feb. 2008. He is really missing James Dewar. Davey Pattison is not cut out to sing Trower's music, maybe that is why they had his mike turned down for the whole show. Robin's only vocals in any of the songs played was the talking part at the start of Twice Removed From Yesterday, and his mike was up. Very good gig. Just hearing Trower play is enough.
  • Mark from Falls Church, VaObviously, the question I asked Robin Trower via Derek Sutton was "Was or wasn't the song inspired by the bridge in Venice?"
  • Mark from Falls Church, VaI asked Derek Sutton, Robin Trower's agent the question about the title of the song, and this was the reply:

    here's the answer from Robin himself


    Hi Derek
    The answer to the Bridge of Sighs question is Yes and No!
    One day reading the sports pages of the newspaper there was a headline saying
    Bridge of Sighs to win.................
    Obviously the horse was named after the bridge in Venice but when I saw the headline, I immediately thought what a great song title that would be.
    Cheers for now.
    r.

  • Lester from New York City, NyI have SSSOOOOO many versions of 'Bridge of Sighs', by way of Trower's live albums and tapes I made at Robin's concerts. Absolutely one of my favorite songs.
  • Aaron from Cottage Grove, Orgreat song. there's a pretty good poem by thomas hood, has the same name, its about a suicide on the bridge in venice. music is poetry, remember that before you disregaurd the poem
  • Tom from Bluemont, VaI was at a friend's party when I heard Bridge playing on his stereo.I asked who is that and what is the name of that song? He said that's Robin Trower dude. I was immediately hooked and went out and bought every album I could find. Still a huge fan 30 years later.
  • Phil from San Jose, CaRobin Trower and band is terrific! James Dewar was the Pavarotti of Rock, great deep voice. Trower is underated in my opinion, to many unfair comparasions to Hendrix. Trower was also in Procol Harum.
  • Daniel from Genoa, OhThis song blows me away. James Dewar's vocals and Trower's guitar blends together perfectly. If this doesn't give you chills, nothing will.
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