Bruce covered the song 5 times:
In Bruce's early years (pre-October 1972). The song was played in a lengthy instrumental-only arrangement.
1972-02-04 Back Door (The), Richmond, VA
One show, with The Bruce Springsteen Band the sole act on the bill. This was opening night of 9-show residency that encompassed three of the four weekends in February. Southside Johnny was a guest on the first weekend.
1971-11-13 Student Prince, Asbury Park, NJ
Darkness ,Darkness is performed together with Southside Johnny as a guest. One show, with The Bruce Springsteen Band the sole act on the bill. Comments made by Bruce on the regarding video footage being shot during the show positively link this audio to The Student Prince. Prior to beginning "I Remember" Springsteen can be heard informing the audience that a gentleman named Mark Romanski is present and filming. Romanski, a friend of Steven Van Zandt, was filming as part of a course project he was taking at University. Sadly all the film footage was destroyed in the early 1970s. It is believed this filming was undertaken at one of the November 1971 shows, although the specific date has not been determined.
1971-07-29 D'Scene, South Amboy, NJ (Early)
This source is unique in being the only known recording of a complete, full-length Bruce Springsteen Band concert with backing singers and horns. The reels were recently discovered in the vault of a highly respected collector and originally belonged to Mike Appel. The instrumental "Darkness, Darkness" clocks in at over 18 minutes, and contains elements that would later be found in "Kitty's Back".
1971-07-22 D'Scene, South Amboy, NJ (Early)
The song written only as "Instrumental" in this evening setlist may be what is generally referred to as "Darkness, Darkness", which was regularly played by the Bruce Springsteen Band around this time
One show, quadruple billing, with the newly-formed Bruce Springsteen Band headlining the outdoor '2nd Annual Nothing's Festival'. Undercard acts were Sunny Jim, Odin and Jeannie Clark. This gig is the first known performance of The Bruce Springsteen Band. They're essentially a modified version of Dr. Zoom & The Sonic Boom (minus The Zoomettes, Southside Johnny and the various vaudeville elements). The line-up of this initial version is Springsteen, Van Zandt, Sancious, Tallent and Lopez plus (on selected tracks) Bobby Feigenbaum (sax), Harvey Cherlin (trumpet), along with the vocal duet of Delores Holmes and Barbara Dinkins. This large nine-member lineup of the band will eventually expand to ten, with the addition of Bruce's manager Tinker West on congas. However this 'big band sound' will only last about two months before it begins to shrink.