Thursday, August 21, 2008


(photo from

Yes, I saw Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band on this tour three times already. (Read about it here, here, and here.) But my wife missed all three shows because she was out of the country, so we "had" to see the band when they played Hershey Park (of all places).

Odd too see Bruce and the band playing a venue that will be hosting the Journey/Heart/Cheap Trick tour, but there you go. It was a beautiful night, with lots of fans making the trip from the great state of New Jersey to catch one more show on this leg of the tour. And the band (minus Patti Scialfa, who apparently has missed most of this part of the tour to tend to parently duties) didn't disappoint.

I was thinking of making a sign with a song request - this tour has seen Bruce actually go into the crowd and take signs with song requests from fans. I was thinking of the electric version of Nebraska's "Reason To Believe" that he was playing on the first leg of the tour, but not since. Or one of my favorites, "Part Man, Part Monkey," a song about "intelligent design" before it was called that - a song they performed at my first Bruce concert on the Tunnel of Love tour, and which Bruce eventually recorded as a b-side for Human Touch's "57 Channels." (I was going to attempt to draw a picture of George W. exaggerating his monkey-ish features).

Alas, I never got around to making a sign, and I wasn't in the pit anyway, so I wouldn't have been close enough to hand it to the man. And yet, he played both of those songs! "Part Man, Part Monkey" was particularly amazing, as the band haven't played it since Tunnel Of Love (20 years ago!). Bruce said that the band didn't know it anyway, but asked them to follow him, and they pulled it off flawlessly. Another great moment was John Lee Hooker's "Boom Boom." Just as Max Weinberg was starting the drums to "Light Of Day," Little Steven grabbed a sign from the audience asking for "Boom Boom" and the band played that instead.

Of course, there were great moments of the non-rarity variety as well: "Born To Run," "Badlands," "The Promised Land," "The Rising," "No Surrender," "Thunder Road," "Jungleland," "She's The One," etc., never lose any of their power, especially when played by The E Street Band. (I do have to say, "Out In The Street" seemed weird without Patti). And it's great to hear so many newer classics: "Livin' In The Future," "Long Walk Home," "American Land." I wish he played "Girls In Their Summer Clothes."

I can't imagine that Bruce will sit out the election season without touring: here's hoping he keeps the E Street Band on the road for a few more months into the fall.

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