Home > Uncategorized > I have seen the face of Rock n’ Roll, twice

I have seen the face of Rock n’ Roll, twice

I have seen many amazing things in my life, but last night I experienced one of the greatest moments in my life. This was my second Bruce Springsteen and E-Street Band show, and I didn’t think the experience of the first one could be topped. But it was. I had really really really high expectations going in. He was playing Born to Run in full, which is my second favorite album. He had played it in other stops along this tour and I had read nothing but great things mainly. The bar was high, and it was easily cleared. Here are the events of the evening.

My car ride took an extra hour due to traffic, but it was OK since I ended up getting into the pit anyways. My number was 760, they were letting 500 people into it and they called a number in the 300s I was in. I knew my luck had turned and getting into the pit made up for the hassle. While in line I bumped into my pal Liz and her Dad, who kindly invited me to hang out with them for the rest of the evening. Once they lined all of us pit people up by number and got us inside about two and half hours early Liz, her dad, and I picked our spot. We went with the only obvious one left, right near the mini-platform set up between the barriers of the pit railing and the railing for the rest of the general admission seats. Liz had been to a few other shows this tour and had known that he would be on that stage at some point. The show was supposed to begin at 7:30 according to the ticket, but Bruce being Bruce did not get on stage until about 8:23. That was fine by me, he is Bruce Freaking Springsteen and if he wants to start an hour late he can start an hour late.

Show Time! Max is at the drums, thankfully (I would have been disappointed if he was not there, sorry Jay, but what Max and I have is special). He opened with Wrecking Ball , a song that is new that I had heard only one time, but the crowd was into it. Then Came Seeds. Which I had heard it before, but could not figure out why the hell he has playing. I become a little disappointed now thinking this might be an off night for Bruce and the band. But I would be proved wrong immediately.

The E-Street band proved why they are the greatest band ever with Prove it All Night.  Now I love the version I just linked to, but last night Nils Lofgren played an amazing guitar solo, that sent shivers done my spine. It was a man doing what he is good at and doing it damn well. After that I knew this was going to be the great show that I was expecting. Bruce then tossed his guitar to the tech after the song was over and busted into Hungry Heart. He circled the pit and seats nearest to the floor. He then reached the aforementioned platform.  There he sang for few minutes then crowd surfed. This is when I got to touch greatness. I reached over and grazed his leg before he surfed past me. Liz did as well and both of our knees were jittery for the next few songs.  I had touched one of my heroes; it was absolutely amazing.  After my brush with greatness, Bruce returned to the stage and played his first song from Working on a Dream , playing the title track.

He then introed the Born to Run album (an album is a CD, kids sorry to talk like a 50 year old) and talked about how important the album was to the band, before busting into Thunder Road, which is the greatest Springsteen song ever. I have a strong personal connection  with one of the lyrics. “Its a town full of losers, And I’m pulling out of here to win” Those words mean a lot to me because its how I felt about going to college in Missouri. It was the words that were in my head when I was pulling out of my driveway in Port St Lucie for the last time. It was those words that I thought of when I got on I-95 and those words when I was officially out of Florida. I love this song a lot and live it was so great. The set went on with Tenth Avenue Freeze Out, which you have to love because it’s a very Clarence centered song and everyone loves that guy. Night was next and was of course great, but then what I thought would have been the greatest single song preformed live I have ever seen after it was done, this would be proved wrong about 15 songs later, but I’ll get to that. I honestly don’t have any words to describe the experience of watching that performance of Backstreets. Bruce vocally went somewhere that was so emotionally powerful that I may never be able to listen to the song the same way again. At one point he shushed the crowd once they started to clap, He went somewhere inside himself that really shined. I was moved to say the least. It was a very unique experience. Born to Run seemed to just pass by quickly; I do not really remember it all to well since I was so moved by Backstreets. Next comes She’s the One and it was very nice true to the album version, with the standard live flair, which was perfect because I love that song the way it is. Next was the highly anticipated Meeting Across the River and Jungleland back to back the way it should be done, just like the album. It knocked my expectations way out of the park. Meeting was beautifully done with Bruce on vocals, Roy Bittan on the piano, Gary W Tallent on the Bass, and a guy named Ramhorn on the horn (there is a story about that for another, Liz knows. I don’t know if that is actually his name, but if it isn’t I don’t want to know).  It was a great performance of the song all around. Jungleland is a great song o

ne of my all time favorites. Clarence’s solo was one of the highlights of the night too. He is the man, but my love for him is for another blog. Hearing the album in its entirety was one of the great experiences of my life. I do not know how listening to it on my iPod will sound now. It will be awhile before I give it a shot.

The band then busted into Waiting on a Sunny Day which provided the cutest moment of the night. Bruce bought up a little boy on the stage from the audience to sing and it was so adorable. He knew all the words and watching the band’s reaction was the best part of the whole thing. Working on a Highway was next. I am not the biggest fan of the Born in the USA album, but of the few songs he did off of it last night I enjoyed. This had a nice variation to the original that was very enjoyable and fun. The next three songs went as followed: The Promise Land, Lonesome Day, and The Rising, all three were great with The Promise Land being the best of the three.  The main set was closed out with my favorite Born in the USA track, No Surrender.  Which is the song I listened to while pulling out of the school parking lot, before school was out thanks to a certain newspaper teacher, on the day of my first Springsteen concert. Why did I listen to that song, that day? If your not a Bruce fan you do not know, if you are you do. Times up. The song starts out with the lyrics, “We busted out of class had to get away from those fools, We learned more from a three minute record than we ever learned in school.” It was a great way to close out the main set.

The band then went to the back of the stage then came back out to gather signs from the audience. The first acknowledged one was a very nicely done that had Bruce Play the Piano. So Bruce played the Piano, after a brief mishap with getting the piano to make some noise and trying to figure out the lyric sheets (apparently Bruce has trouble remembering songs he wrote in the early 70s, even though he has song it thousands of times). He then busted into For You, a song that I love to death. Combining that with the fact that my favorite thing musically is someone sitting at a piano just playing and singing. This was the song of the night for me. Surpassing every other song I have seen played live including the recently played Backstreets and Jack White solo on going to be Friends. It was just amazing and very powerful to listen to the words with no other instruments beside the piano. Next came the cleverest sign of the night. It was for a Chuck Berry song, it was in St Louis it was only necessary to play CB, but this sign came with lyrics and cords on the back. Bruce was a big fan of this, especially since they were quality cords. Little Steven found it hilarious.  The song was Roll Over Beethoven and it was enjoyable for never having heard it before. Next came the second song from Working on a Dream with a requested Surprise Surprise for a girl who was celebrating her 15th birthday. (The song has a line that says, “Today is your birthday.” That’s why it was requested not because it’s a great song). Then came Detroit Melody, not my favorite, but fun, then the always fun American Land, followed by the over popular Dancing in the Dark (yes this is the Courtney Cox video), and the classic Rosalita. The last few songs were good. It was a very fun ending to a great show.

Then everyone spilled out of the arena and I enjoyed my two-hour car ride home and did not arrive home till 2 am.

All and all it was a wonderful evening. I am really happy that I experienced that show; it was a great experience that I will always remember.

P.S. I hope you enjoy the videos. It was not a lot of extra work, but listen to some of the songs if your not a huge fan especially. Listen to some live songs you will not receive the full live Springsteen effect, but it will make your day a bit better. I also wanted to post more pics from my cell phone, but could not figure out how to get them onto the internet.

Wrecking Ball
Prove It All Night
Hungry Heart
Working on a Dream
Thunder Road
Tenth Avenue Freeze-out (with Curt Ramm)
Born to Run
She’s the One
Meeting Across the River (with Curt Ramm)
Waitin’ on a Sunny Day
Working on the Highway
The Promised Land
Lonesome Day
The Rising
No Surrender
For You
Roll Over Beethoven
Surprise, Surprise
Detroit Medley
American Land
Dancing in the Dark

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