News Archive March - May 2006
5/28: YOU GOTTA SIN TO BE SAVED
Not having made it over to Europe, last night was my first show since the Asbury rehearsals. And it’s come a long way, baby. Without losing an ounce of the fun that was the hallmark of those nights at Convention Hall, the show has been refined, arrangements nailed down, transitions smoothed out, backup singers given more chance to shine. What we like to call "Mystery Cadillac," that mash-up of "Cadillac Ranch" and "Mystery Train," is finally running smoothly on its rails. The power of the group vocals -- whether blasting out on "Jesse James" or swelling on "We Shall Overcome" -- is stunning. But none of it's so polished as to lose the charm of rough edges that's part of making music on the fly -- the continuing revelatory aspect of the show. And on the bigger stage with a bigger crowd, there's more a sense of the familiar, too, with Springsteen swaggering across the rim and working the people into a frenzy. Yeah, folks were into it last night: swing dancing in the pit to that "Chicken Shack Boogie" arrangement of "Open All Night" (another one that has come into its own, now a real showstopper); continuing to sing "Pay Me My Money Down" unaccompanied until Bruce had to come back and conduct it to a close to start the encore. Is that what it feels like in a European crowd? I'm sure you Europeans would laugh and beg to differ, but to these eyes and ears it was a great surprise to be surrounded by such a fired-up crowd in Northern Virgina on this tour.
On this tour -- let's talk about that for a sec. I've heard so much chatter about how some shows aren't selling out, and what that might mean.... Well, for one thing, it means that fans who should be there, who would have a blast, may not know what they're missing. For anyone who has traveled to more than one show on previous tours in hopes of catching something fresh and new, here's an entire show of fresh and new -- and as one buddy of mine said, half of it gives you chills. On the upside and flipside, as a couple people told me last night with a big grin, it means that tickets are that much easier for the rest of us. True. But I can't help feeling that, for every unsold seat or every unclaimed spot on the lawn, there's someone waiting for a moment that just don't come, while missing the chance to see a liberated Springteen, clearly having the time of his life (hell, find someone on stage who isn't!) doing a 180 from the Devils & Dust tour with a raucous, shout-along, musically overpowering hootenanny. But what it doesn't mean -- as I found myself thinking and fearing between shows -- is that people who are there aren't having a blast. Man, what a feeling to turn around in the pit -- as you might look around in an arena during an E Street Band houselights-up version of "Born to Run" -- and see what looks like an endless sea of people stretching to high on the hill, Virginia asses out of their Virginia seats, all with their hands in the air, all singing along, just like a... well, like a Springsteen show. What'dja expect?
TIVO ALERT: LATE NITE TELLYVISION, COAST TO COAST
BRUCE HITS THE STUDIO IN OSLO
HALF-HOUR AMSTERDAM INTERVIEW ONLINE
WHO'S FOOLIN' WHO?
THREE-SONG VIDEO CLIP FROM BBC SHOW ONLINE NOW
And on Sunday, May 21, listen for a Springsteen interview on BBC Radio 2, on Johnny Walker's show from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. GMT.
CHARITY AUCTIONS ON NOW FOR EACH TOUR STOP
TICKET ALERT: LAST TWO ONSALES, FRI & SAT
LOOKING FOR SOMETHING PRETTY YOU CAN HANG UP ON YOUR WALL?
The photograph was taken on September 20, 1999, backstage at the First Union Center in Philadelphia (show #3 of the 6 nights in Philly). Clearly visible is the previous night's setlist, to ensure the requisite setlist changes from night to night. At the moment captured, Bruce had only written that night's list up to "Tenth Avenue Freeze-out." The guitar he's holding and book of songs he's looking at suggest that he's deciding -- at that very moment -- what to play in the famous "post-Tenth" slot in the setlist, often the biggest setlist surprise on any given night... Philly got "Back in Your Arms" that night.
"STILL SPRINGSTEEN... BY WAY OF TOWN AND PRESERVATION HALLS"
Pick up the March/April 2006 issue of No Depression on newsstands now (with Alejandro Escevedo on the cover), or online at www.nodepression.net.
IRISH EYES ARE SMILING: EURO TOUR OPENS IN DUBLIN
Speaking to David McCullagh in Dublin for RTE, Springsteen talked about the Irish influence on this music: "That's where it came from! So we're excited about coming and starting in Dublin for that very reason -- those influences are all through the whole night. Watch interview and performance footage here. Of the show, McCullagh tells Backstreets: "More fun than I've had with my clothes on. I had my doubts about the whole Seeger thing, but those doubts have been taken out, stomped on a good few times, and told never to come back to Buffalo."
TICKET ALERT: U.S. ON-SALES RESUME FRIDAY, 5/5
SOLD ON SONG BROADCAST SCHEDULE -- RADIO AND TV!
And while we're doing VCR/Tivo alerts, don't forget that CMT's one-hour Bruce Springsteen: The Seeger Sessions special debuts tomorrow (Friday) night at 9 p.m.
BOSTON SHOW MOVES TO THE GREAT OUTDOORS
For the full schedule, with onsale dates and links,
-May 3, 2006
THIS COULD BE THE LAST TIME...
-May 2, 2006
WHAT ELSE CAN WE DO NOW?
Once again, the organization has been given permission to use lines from "Thunder Road": "Show a little faith / There's magic in the night"; visit their rockshop to get some cool garb featuring the lyric and the Esquire/ribbon logo --including a black T-shirt, new this year.
While Springsteen takes his tour overseas for the next few weeks, you can find more shows like this, as always, on our concert calendar.
DEAD MAN'S SUITE
FIRST WE TAKE NEW ORLEANS
-April 30, 2006 - Joseph Kubon photo
GOIN' DOWN, DOWN, DOWN, DOWN...
SON OF A GUN, BIG FUN AHEAD AT JAZZ FEST
And Bruce's official site has something to get you in the mood: you can hear the most Crescent City-centric song of the set (say that three times fast!) online now, straight from the Asbury Park soundboard. Not included on the We Shall Overcome album, "How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live?" is a highlight of the new show, reworked with newly written verses. The bitrate is low, but if you didn't get a chance to see any rehearsal shows, it's a great sneak peek of what's in store. Take a listen -- as well as a read of the complete lyric and a note from Bruce -- at www.brucespringsteen.net.
NEW LONDON DATE ADDED FOR SOLD ON SONG
And speaking of the UK, if you're thinking about a trip to Europe, check out concert packages from our friends at Badlands, organizing trips to Manchester and Paris.
A LITTLE BIT COUNTRY: BRUCE DOC COMING TO CMT
TICKET ALERT: U.S. ON-SALES BEGIN FRIDAY, 4/28
-April 27, 2006
NEW INTERVIEWS IN NY DAILY NEWS, ROLLING STONE
Like Hinckley, Neil Strauss also spent time with the Boss at rehearsals for latest issue of Rolling Stone. In addition to talking folk songs, gospel, kids, and politics with Bruce, Strauss's game includes expanding on what we'd heard about Tracks II: "Initially, Springsteen had no intention of putting out an album of centuries-old folk songs. After touring behind Devils & Dust, he'd planned to take a year off, then get back together with the E Street Band to record some new songs he'd written for them. But idleness is not something that sits well with Springsteen. First, he thought he'd use the time to dig through the vaults for a second volume of Tracks, his 1998 collection of rarities and outtakes. That, however, led him to consider revisiting a record he made but never released in the mid-Nineties: a solo album of songs over tape loops, extending the terrain he explored in 'Streets of Philadelphia.'..."
SIRIUS LISTENERS, THE BOSS IS BACK!
CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME
Tickets for Tuesday morning's live performance are FREE, with a two-ticket limit per person, and will be available beginning Friday morning 4/21 at 9 a.m. through Ticketmaster. These free tickets will be sent by e-mail, for at-home printing. Convention Hall doors will open at 6:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning for all who have tickets, for camera blocking. Not a bad way to celebrate release day!
Oh, and: SonyBMG has provided a limited edition T-shirt for the first 1,500 people who arrive on Tuesday morning.
"After a long time, you get a lot more secure about what you're doing," Springsteen tells Larry McShane in a new Associated Press interview, talking about getting new music out more quickly these days. "I spend much less time making decisions. Incredibly less." Read the full AP article.
-April 19, 2006
STOP, LOOK, & LISTEN: MONDAY NEWS ROUNDUP
-April 17, 2006
Springsteen's hootenanny coming to the great outdoors
Less than a week after returning from Europe, Springsteen will begin a month of stateside dates, from May 27 in Boston to June 25 in Jersey. For this May-June leg, 18 shows were announced in 17 U.S. cities, including a closing two-nighter at the PNC Amphiteatre in Holmdel, NJ.
Venues are a mix of outdoor amphitheatres (also including the Greek in L.A.) and arenas (like NYC's Madison Square Garden). Springsteen will be touring with his 17-piece Seeger Sessions Band, similar to the ensemble's Europe line-up, but with Mark Pender and La Bamba back in the fold.
See our Tour/Ticket Info page for full itinerary, and on-sale dates as we know them.
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