Chuck Berry - You never can tell

First performance: 03/06/1974


Bruce covered the song 8 times :   

2016-07-20 CASA Arena, Horsens, Denmark
played by sign request. Famous proshot was made of this performance
"You Never Can Tell" is played by sign request.

2007-06-24 Florentine Gardens, River Vale, NJ
Wedding reception for friends of Bruce and Patti . Bruce, on guitar and vocals, joins the wedding band (Jeff Lubin Band) on a rollicking rendition of Chuck Berry’s "You Never Can Tell

1989-06-02 Stone Pony (The), Asbury Park, NJ
Played at the Stone Pony with Max Weinberg's group Killer Joe, plus Roy Bittan, Patti Scialfa, and The Miami Horns.

1979-06-03 Whisky A Go Go, West Hollywood, CA
Wedding of Marc Brickman to June Rudley, Bruce's lighting director and travel agent respectively. They played for three hours, a mixture of classic covers and Springsteen originals.
One show, double bill, with Springsteen & The E Street Band headlining and Orphan opening. The Buzzard: Inside the Glory Days of WMMS and Cleveland Rock Radio by John Gorman (2007) states that "the club was a little over half full, with a smattering of college students from the Jersey Shore and Philadelphia," which explains Bruce asking if anybody was from Jersey before "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)." It also states that Kid Leo was invited to this show as a guest by Columbia Records, but had no interest in attending (by the time Bruce returned four years later he had changed his mind). Highlights include a striking rendition of Chuck Berry's "You Never Can Tell" and the last known (and probably tightest) live performance of "Tokyo", which by mid-'74 seems to be morphing into a new title with altered lyrics sometimes called "Sleepytown". "The E Street Shuffle" includes "Having A Party". Most (possibly all) of this 100-minute show was recorded by WMMS-FM in Cleveland, then edited to fit into a 60-minute time schedule and broadcast for the first time on June 5 at 10.00pm -11.00pm. There were approximately 40 minutes (four to six songs) of the performance not broadcast and none of the unbroadcasted material is in circulation, if indeed it ever survived the editing room. Based on other contemporary setlists, the songs likely edited out were "Does This Bus Stop At 82nd Street?", "New York City Serenade", "Kitty’s Back", and maybe "It's Hard To Be A Saint In The City".


"You Never Can Tell", also known as "C'est La Vie" or "Teenage Wedding", is a song written by Chuck Berry. It was composed in the early 1960s while Berry was in federal prison for violating the Mann Act. ( 1964 ). The melody was influenced by Mitchell Torok's 1953 hit "Caribbean".  The tune was also made popular in the 1994 film "Pulp Fiction."

Bruce on the artist

2021-09-01 SiriusXM Studio, New York City
Bruce played the song during the 27th epsiode of  'From My Home to Yours' series, themed "Going to the Chapel", a homage to songs about love and marriage. 
When Chuck Berry died Bruce tweeted :
"Chuck Berry was rock's greatest practitioner, guitarist, and the greatest pure rock 'n' roll writer who ever lived. This is a tremendous loss of a giant for the ages."

Springsteen and Berry played together on at least two occasions. As back up at the University of Maryland in 1973. Springsteen asked what songs they were going to do. Berry said : " we're going to do some Chuck Berry songs." More than 20 years later, Springsteen again played backup for Berry, at a concert at Cleveland Municipal Stadium, celebrating the opening of the Rock and Roll Music Hall of Fame.
Bruce had 3 performances together with Chuck Berry:

1995-09-02 Cleveland Municipal Stadium, Cleveland, OH
The Rock And Roll Hall of Fame inauguration concert
1987-01-21 Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, New York City, NY
The second annual Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame ceremony. 

1973-04-28 Cole Field House, University Of Maryland, College Park, MD
One show, triple bill, with Chuck Berry headlining, [Lee Lewis]] second billed and Bruce and the boys opening. A show now steeped in legend. Berry's contract stipulated that it was the promoter's responsibility to supply him with a backing band for this concert. Apparently Bruce learned about a week before the show that the promoter was seeking a group to support Berry and immediately volunteered his band's services for free, which the promoter gladly accepted. There was no rehearsal or soundcheck with Berry, so Bruce and the boys improvised as best they could. The show was Bruce's first known appearance in Maryland. Bruce and the boys opened their part of the show with a 50-minute set, followed by a 60-minute set by Jerry Lee Lewis and his band. Chuck Berry (with Springsteen's entire band backing him, including Bruce and Southside Johnny) closed the evening's festivities with a 70-minute performance. Springsteen recounts some hilarious details in the 1987 Chuck Berry documentary Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll, but does not mention Southside Johnny’s appearance. Fearing that Berry might not want a harp player Bruce positioned Southside in the shadows at the extreme end of the stage. However Berry enjoyed the harp playing and near the end of the show he actually acknowledged Southside to the crowd saying "that white boy can blow, can’t he!" This almost sold out gig in the 15,000 seat Cole Field House was not without some controversy. Such was the demand to see the show that the school newspaper reported that twenty people were arrested when police spotted individuals sneaking into the concert via an open female lavatory window at the back of the building. Apparently 200-300 people made it in before the police caught wind of what was going on. 
Watch Bruce tells the story here  
List of songs co-credited to Bruce Springsteen and Chuck Berry:


It was a teenage wedding, and the old folks wished them well
You could see that Pierre did truly love the mademoiselle
And now the young monsieur and madame have rung the chapel bell
"C'est la vie," say the old folks, "it goes to show you never can tell"

They furnished off an apartment with a 2-room Roebuck sale
The coolerator was crammed with TV dinners and ginger ale,
But when Pierre found work, the little money comin' worked out well
"C'est la vie," say the old folks, "it goes to show you never can tell"

They had a hi-fi phono, boy, did they let it blast
700 little records, all rock, rhythm and jazz
But when the sun went down, the rapid tempo of the music fell
"C'est la vie," say the old folks, "it goes to show you never can tell"

They bought a souped-up jitney, was a cherry red '53
And drove it down to Orleans to celebrate their anniversary
It was there where Pierre was wedded to the lovely mademoiselle
"C'est la vie," say the old folks, "it goes to show you never can tell"

They had a teenage wedding, and the old folks wished them well
You could see that Pierre did truly love the mademoiselle
And now the young monsieur and madame have rung the chapel bell
"C'est la vie," say the old folks, "it goes to show you never can tell"