Sunday, March 2, 2008


I recently asked a friend of mine, who goes to tons of Bruce Springsteen shows, if he was going to go to opening night of the second leg of the Magic tour. He said "Nah, I've learned my lesson about opening night."

For those who aren't Springsteen fanatics, lore has it that opening nights don't tend to be the best shows. I've been to a few, and it's true, they usually aren't great compared to what is to come. But apparently, that rule didn't hold this week when Bruce and The E Street Band played Hartford, Conn. (That's where this picture was taken - and I got it from Backstreets). Sadly, keyboardist Danny Federici wasn't back with the band. He is being treated for melanoma, and missed the European leg of the tour, but supposedly he will try to make it to some of the U.S. dates on this leg. Charlie Giordano, who played in Bruce's Seeger Sessions Band is still filling in.

In happier news, Bruce was recently interviewed by USA Today, and he revealed that he has been in the studio lately, both with The E Street Band, and also working on a solo acoustic record. Supposedly, Bruce has full albums that he recorded but never released though, so who knows when we'll hear anything new from him. But it's cool that he's been working on new stuff.

It's kind of a bummer that it seems as if he is "only" doing three nights at Giants Stadium this summer. Last time Bruce and The E Street Band did a summer tour, they did ten nights, followed by three more at Shea. (Of course, very few artists these days could even play Giants Stadium once).

I attribute this to a few things:

(1) In 2003, Bruce was touring for The Rising, an album that really resonated with people post-9/11. Magic is a great album, and is as relevant to this moment in time as The Rising was to 2002-2203, but there was just something about that album that make Bruce seem as big as he was during the Born In The U.S.A. era.
(2) Since The Rising era, Bruce has alienated a lot of fans, due to his politics.
(3) He has also toured a lot: for a while, Bruce would take long breaks between projects, he's been fairly prolific and has toured often since that tour ended, on The Vote For Change Tour, plus the tours for Devils & Dust and The Seeger Sessions album, We Shall Overcome.
(4) His management usually strategizes his career so perfectly, you'd wish they could run the music industry (or the country). But putting tickets that cost $65 - $100 dollars each on sale during the Christmas season for concerts that are a half year away probably wasn't the best idea. Yes, Bruce tickets make a great Christmas gift, but they went on sale only days after the shows were announced, and these days, most Americans don't have an extra couple of hundred bucks lying around, especially during Christmas.
(5) People expect that he'll be doing more shows there, so once the "good seats" sold out, people are waiting for more shows to go on sale, so they can get better seats.

Whatever ,I have tickets for one show, and if he only does these three, I'll try to get for one of the others, if not both of the others. Right now, it looks like his tour is ending right after Giants Stadium, when he plays a Harley Davidson festival. But I bet they'll tour again in the fall, around election time. I bet Bruce is still bummed that the biggest rock stars in the world weren't able to push John Kerry to victory in the last election, but that doesn't mean that they (or he) shouldn't try again this year, hopefully with Obama.

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