Saturday, March 22, 2008

Can't start a fire without a spark

In kind of a funny place just at the moment, which is probably why I haven't felt moved to blog much. This too shall pass. Not to worry.

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The Bruce Springsteen concert Thursday night was PHENOMENAL. A very good setlist (see also here) which included several old and infrequently-played songs, and most importantly, Danny Federici -- the E Street Band organist who's been sidelined since mid-November while undergoing treatment for melanoma -- made his first return appearance. I'd heard that he was doing pretty well & hoped to show up for the occasional show at some point during this leg of the tour, but hadn't dared hope to see him in Indianapolis. It was abundantly clear how happy everyone in the band was to have him back, even if only for part of the show, and Bruce was grinning ear to ear. "Fourth of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)" with Danny on accordion gave me serious goosebumps, and "Spirit in the Night" (which featured Danny prominently on organ) was hellaciously fun. Other personal highlights for me included "Because the Night" and "Backstreets" -- also "Badlands" (which I knew was going to be played, so it didn't have the surprise factor of some other songs, but I really really love that song). The encore included a ridiculously loose and playful "Kitty's Back" with jaw-dropping musicianship from the whole band; and, of course, "Born to Run" -- that song played live in an arena, when the house lights come up and everybody's pumping their fists in the air and singing along, is just one of those absolutely classic, essential rock & roll moments.

It's hard to believe I saw Bruce & the E Street Band for the first time almost thirty (!!) years ago. Hard to believe some of those songs are 35+ years old. Bruce still gives it everything he's got on stage; I don't know how he comes up with that much energy & joy night after night. Goodness knows he doesn't need the money, so you have to believe that at this point he only does it because he loves to do it. There were moments he was like a little kid up there, dancing and grinning and playing and swinging on the mic stand -- he's just so cute sometimes! No other performer puts it all out there the way he does or connects with the audience the way he does.

I have to say this was definitely in my all-time top ten concerts ... probably top five ... maybe even top three. For two and a half hours, all was right with the world.

For the ones who had a notion, a notion deep inside
That it ain't no sin to be glad you're alive...

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A very happy Easter to all those who celebrate.


greg rappleye said...


Sounds like fun!

Collin said...

Sounds like a fab show.

Happy Egg Day. :)

Anne said...

Thanks, guys. :) Anything I can say about that show is an understatement, really. It was pretty amazing. Hard to believe the guy is 58 years old.