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Tag: Bruce Springsteen

“Glory Days” – from London Calling: Live in Hyde Park [Boss Time]

Only a few weeks until Bruce’s latest live DVD hits stores. London Calling: Live In Hyde Park captures Bruce and the E Street Band’s June 28th, 2009 performance at London’s Hard Rock Calling Festival – and judging by this preview clip of “Glory Days”, the quality (both video and audio) will be top-notch baby. Check it out…

Pre-Order: London Calling: Live in Hyde Park (2 DVD)

London Calling: Live In Hyde Park will be available everywhere on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on June 22, 2010.

London Calling: Live In Hyde Park Tracklisting:
London Calling
Badlands
Night
She’s The One
Outlaw Pete
Out In The Street
Working On A Dream
Seeds
Johnny 99
Youngstown
Good Lovin’
Bobby Jean
Trapped
No Surrender
Waiting On A Sunny Day
Promised Land
Racing In The Street
Radio Nowhere
Lonesome Day
The Rising
Born To Run
Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)
Hard Times (Come Again No More)
Jungleland
American Land
Glory Days
Dancing In The Dark
Credits (Raise Your Hand)

BONUS MATERIAL:
The River: Glastonbury Festival, 2009
Wrecking Ball: Giants Stadium, 2009

Hope for Haiti Now

Like many of you, I sat down and took in the two hours of Hope for Haiti Now last night – a music-based benefit organized by overall good guy George Clooney. It was broadcast on most TV and cable networks. This will shock you, but Fox News did not – I repeat, DID NOT – broadcast the show last night. That is completely surprising to – well – nobody.

Well, those Fox News watching fu–tards missed out on some pretty cool moments last night. If you could make it through the awkward celebrity phone conversations with the general public, you saw the likes of Bono, Rihanna, Jay-Z, Bono, Mary J. Blige, Coldplay, Jennifer Hudson, Dave Matthews and Neil Young, Sting, Shakira, and of course the Boss (and many others).

All of the performances can be purchased on iTunes or Amazon.

Here’s a look at my favorite moments from the evening:

5. Bruce Springsteen – “We Shall Overcome”

This classic spiritual was covered by Bruce on his 2006 Seeger Sessions record. Last night, Bruce brought out his backup singers, along with Charles Giordano on accordion and Curt Ramm on trumpet.

dead link

4. Justin Timberlake and Matt Morris – “Hallelujah”

I was pleasantly surprised by this. As covers of this Leonard Cohen song go, Jeff Buckley’s stands firmly above the rest. But Justin and Matt last night were spot on with their harmonies, and brought out the true beauty in the song – which is more of a lover’s lament than a song about hope, strength, and inspiration (the general theme of the night). I was most impressed by Matt Morris’s vocals.

3. Shakira – “I’ll Stand By You”

This song is one of my favorite Pretenders tunes, and Shakira nailed it, in my opinion. Of course, my opinion may have been different if she looked like Tiny Tim, but visually and aurally, it was fantastic – especially with the Roots backing her up.

2. Sting w/ the Roots – “Driven to Tears”

What a great version this was. The full, lush arrangement – Sting on acoustic surrounded by the Roots. Questlove, drummer for the Roots, mentioned on Twitter that he was really looking forward to this performance because he’s practiced drums to the Police since he was a kid.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6yiUHqMcig

1. Wyclef Jean – “Rivers of Babylon” > Haitian traditional

I’m a big fan of “Rivers of Babylon”, a song written by the Melodians in 1972, and covered by many, including Steve Earle. But when Wyclef shifted gears and launched into the percussive blast of his native Haiti, it was like a load being lifted from our shoulders. He sang in English and his native creole, sang about strength in the face of adversity, sang even about Anderson Cooper and CNN. It was a perfect ending to the night.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1M0k9iR3bE

Growin’ Up

A fellow Boss fan sent me a link to this video earlier today. It’s a 23 year old Bruce Springsteen performing “Growin’ Up” at Max’s Kansas City in New York City. The year was 1972 – Bruce’s first album wasn’t released until the following year.

Somehow, this seems appropriate as the first post of this new year.. Going back to basics, thinking back to a simpler time. With a new year, we have the chance to start anew – to make a few tweaks and adjustments here and there. A chance to press the ol’ reset button.

This growin’ up thing – it can be a bit complicated, even frightening at times. Sometime it helps to just try and keep things simple…

Happy New Year, and thanks Lonny for the link..

Pete’s Favorite Albums of the 00’s

Quick Note: I didn’t want to bombard my Top 10 with Springsteen and Prince albums, so I chose my favorites of theirs from the 00’s. Did I spend more time with  M.I.A.’s Arular than with Bruce’s Magic or Prince’s Musicology?  No way.  Just so you know, I limited my picks to one album per artist.

And now, on to the completely subjective look at 10 of my favorite albums of the decade!

10. Prince – The Rainbow Children (2001)

rainbowchildren

Jazzy, funky, and dipping deeply into P’s then new-found life as a Jehovah’s Witness, this album connected with me more than any Prince album of the 00’s (and nope, no JW am I). As much as the 54 second “Wedding Feast” makes me cringe, the album makes up for it with great tracks like “Digital Garden”, “The Work, Pt. 1”, and “The Sensual Everafter”.

Favorite tune: “1+1+1 is 3” (mp3) – to me, easily the funkiest Prince song of the 00’s.

9. M.I.A. – Arular (2005)

arular

I couldn’t leave the girls out! M.I.A. came out of nowhere halfway through the decade with her brand of world-influenced electronic hip-hop. I love her attitude, her style, her accent, and she ain’t so bad lookin’ either. I think this is one of those love it or hate it albums. My wife can’t stand it. But for me, songs like “Pull Up The People”, “Fire Fire”, and “Amazon” just, er, do it for me, okay?

Favorite tune: “Bucky Done Gun” – super sexy militant rappin’ time:

8. Steve Earle – Jerusalem (2002)

jerusalem

Steve had a lot to say about the state of our country after 9/11 and the ensuing conflicts overseas. Of course he was his controversial self with “John Walker’s Blues”. He was fierce as hell on “Ashes to Ashes” and “Amerika V. 6.0 (The Best We Can Do)”. And he looked for a world of peace in the gentle album closer, “Jerusalem”. A great album top to bottom.

Favorite tune: “What’s a Simple Man To Do?” (mp3) – an organ-driven barnburner of a tune about a Mexican drug smuggler’s letter to his madre.

7. Wilco – Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2002)

yhf

Sure, some people think this is the obligatory best of the decade album – even if they think it doesn’t merit it. But guess what, it’s completely subjective, and certain albums connect with certain people. YHF was on constant rotation early in the decade. Wilco’s creativity and originality were through the roof in the late 90’s to early 00’s. The changes in direction between Being There, Summerteeth, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, and A Ghost is Born are startling.

Favorite tune: The “War on War” and “Jesus, Etc.” combo special.

6. Grandaddy – The Sophtware Slump (2000)

sophtwareslump

The brainchild of Jason Lytle, this futuristic, tech-themed album – with its gorgeous, sweeping electronic-based melodies – blew me away. Who would’ve guess I’d have such strong feelings about songs like “”Broken Household Appliance National Forest” and “Miner at the Dial-a-View”?

Favorite tune: “The Crystal Lake” and the beautiful “So You’ll Aim Toward the Sky” (YouTube).

5. Arcade Fire – Funeral (2004)

funeral

Win Butler and his merry troupe of noisemakers got my attention with “Old Flame” from their self-titled EP. And when I heard this album, I was hooked.

Favorite tune: “Wake Up” (YouTube) – especially after seeing them live at the Austin City Limits Music Festival. A sea of people singing “Whoooa-ooooa Whoooa-oooo-oooo-ooo”.

4. Bruce Springsteen – We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions (2006)

seegersessions

When Bruce takes a break from the E Street Band, you never know what you’re gonna get. And with the Sessions record, it was a return to the roots of American folk music, and he brought along about 15-20 of his friends for the ride. This album provided countless hours of joy around our house. And the tour stop through Phoenix was an absolute thrill for me and my wife. Hey Bruce, bring back the Sessions Band!!

Favorite tune: “Pay Me My Money Down”. A family favorite. The kids still sing it.

3. Band of Horses – Cease to Begin (2008)

ceasetobegin

2. Band of Horses – Everything All the Time (2006)

everything

Thank God these guys came along. Led by the gentle voice of Ben Bridwell, the first two Band of Horses albums are folk/indie masterpieces. There isn’t a bit of filler in either of these, and I look forward to following these guys for the rest of my lifetime.

Favorite tune: “Monsters” [mp3] (from EATT) and “Windows Blues” [mp3] (from CTB) – surprise, the slower tunes.

1. Marah – Kids in Philly (2000)

kidsinphilly

In 2000, when I was going through some “woe is me” / “whaddya mean I can’t get this girl back”-type stuff, this album picked me up, punched me in the nuts, and knocked me back over. I was living down by the new Tempe Town Lake, and I’d run around it a few nights a week – I’d start running as the opening banjo riff of “Faraway You” ignited the album, and I wouldn’t stop ’til the closing street harmonies of “This Town”. The album was super cathartic, and every time I listen to it, I think of that summer of 2000. August 2000 also included one of the best rock ‘n roll shows I’ve ever seen: Marah at Tempe’s now defunct Long Wong’s – a small, sweat-soaked bar. I’ll never forget the energy of Dave, Serge and the boys that night. The album and band encapsulate what stripped down rock ‘n roll is all about.

Favorite Tune: “Round Eye Blues” (mp3) – capturing the spirit of Motown and Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound, this is a vivid and beautiful song, sung in the perspective of a young man in Vietnam:

Fables tell of men who fell
With swords dangling from their chest
The old guys down at the taproom swear
The Japs could kill you best
But late at night I could still hear the cries
Of three black guys I seen take it in the face
I think about them sweet Motown girls they left behind
And the assholes that took their place

Goosebumps every time.

When all is said and done, this is the album that affected me most personally, and therefore must be crowned: Pete’s Album of the 00’s!

Open All Night as Bruce takes a rest

After the whirlwind schedule that Bruce and the Band have put themselves through the last couple of years, they’ve definitely earned some much needed R&R. And with some sort of hiatus underway (1 year? 2-3 years?), Boss Geeks like me start to speculate on what his next move might be. We know he can’t stay idle for too long, especially these days.

After The Rising Tour, 2005 and 2006 brought about two great albums and tours away from the E Street Band: Devils and Dust, and We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions. Thankfully, Bruce made it through Phoenix on both tours. Seeing him solo was certainly a treat (as was the Tom Joad tour) – but that damn Seeger Sessions tour. Man oh man, what a show they put on!

Counting Bruce, the Sessions Band numbered 18 musicians & singers. Eighteen!  It was a joyous concoction of sound, as they tackled old folk songs, new originals (“American Land” and “Long Walk Home” debuted), gospel music… and then there were the Seeger Sessions tweaks to Bruce’s catalog. Well, more like overhauls than tweaks… from “Blinded By The Light” to “Ramrod” and “The River”, the results always brought out new elements in the songs, and seeing them performed by so many on so many instruments – steel guitar, banjo, trumpets, trombones, and tubas…

One of the best examples is how Bruce modified “Open All Night”, a track from the sparse acoustic Nebraska album. It’s actually one of the more uptempo numbers on Nebraska. But the Sessions Band took the song to another level – a piano and horn driven stomper right out of the 1950’s.

I put on the Live in Dublin DVD earlier this evening as my family and I set up the Christmas tree. The Sessions Band had everyone shimmying and shaking, but “Open All Night” really got the joint rocking. I gotta confess, I enjoy this DVD as much as any E Street live DVD, and as far as speculating and hoping and wishing goes – I hope Bruce gets the Sessions Band together for another tour!

Here’s some evolution for ya – a trio of “Open All Night”…

Bruce Springsteen & the Sessions Band – Open All Night (mp3) – from Live In Dublin

Bruce Springsteen – Open All Night (mp3) – from Nebraska

Bruce Springsteen – Open All Night (mp3) – Short outtake from the Nebraska sessions

Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ (the Buffalo Tour Finale)

For those interested in downloading Sunday’s tour finale in Buffalo (where Bruce and the band performed Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ), head on over to super top-notch blog Addicted to Vinyl, where Matt’s got a zip file of goodness for you…

Greetings from Buffalo, NY (Addicted to Vinyl)

If you’re looking for other full album shows, don’t forget my recent posts:

Darkness in Philly (10/22/09, Philadelphia)
Bruce Takes NYC Down To The River (11/08/09, NYC)
Bruce’s Wild & Innocent Night in NYC (11/07/09, NYC)

Looks like we still need Born to Run and Born In The U.S.A., eh?

Darkness in Philly

As bootlegs go, the tour that supported Bruce’s Darkness on the Edge of Town has to be my favorite (followed closely by The River). My favorite show? Without question, it’s July 7th, 1978 at the Roxy – a small club show in L.A. The quality is perfect, the intensity unmatched. In fact, let me play it now…. *click click*   ….. okay, that’s better.

So by popular demand, here’s the recent Darkness show at the Spectrum in Philly. Can you believe we’re down to only two shows left on this tour?? After Friday in Baltimore, and Sunday in Buffalo (with a full performance of Greetings from Asbury Park, NJ), that is it, folks. Sort of depressing, isn’t it?

As for the future of the E Street Band, I’ll quote Little Steven from this Rolling Stone.com article: “…if you ask me if I think we’ll continue I’ll certainly say yes. It’s just a matter of what happens to everybody physically, beginning with Clarence [Clemons] I suppose. He may fantasize about retiring, but with all his ex-wives I doubt it.”

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band
Philadelphia, PA
October 14th, 2009
“Darkness on the Edge of Town”

Part I

Thundercrack
The Ties That Bind
What Love Can Do
Hungry Heart
Working on a Dream
Intro to Darkness on the Edge of Town
Badlands
Adam Raised a Cain
Something in the Night
Candy’s Room
Racing in the Street
The Promised Land
Factory
Streets of Fire

Part II

Prove It All Night
Darkness on the Edge of Town
Waiting on a Sunny Day
Sherry Darling
Human Touch
Long Walk Home
The Rising
Born to Run
Ramrod
Detroit Medley
American Land
Dancing in the Dark
Flying High (Theme to Rocky)
Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)

Bruce Takes NYC Down To The River

With only four shows left on the Working On A Dream tour (wrapping up in Buffalo on November 22nd), and with much buzz about how the band will be taking some sort of extended hiatus, now’s the time to savor and cherish what Bruce and the Band have been bringing all year – and that’s night after night of powerhouse performances.

The tour started out in April with a healthy dose of tracks from Working On A Dream. Last night in Detroit, only the title track was played. The tour has morphed into more of a special treat for the fans – including full album performances, sign requests, and even Bruce regularly crowd surfing during “Hungry Heart”.

As I mentioned in last week’s The Wild, The Innocent post, a couple of special nights took place in New York City last weekend. Saturday was a full performance of The Wild, The Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle,  and Sunday was Bruce’s 1980 classic The River.

The River is special to me because it was the album in which I first became aware of Bruce Springsteen. I was only 10 years old, but my older brother Dave became a fan – and he got the chance to go see Bruce when the tour rolled though Minneapolis. “Fade Away” was the first 45 I ever owned. Sides 3 and 4 (“Point Blank” thru “Wreck on the Highway”) have probably had more playtime in my life than any other album (okay, right along with Purple Rain)…  it’s the slow burners like “Point Blank”, “Stolen Car”, “Fade Away”, “Wreck on the Highway”, and of course “Drive All Night” that still resonate so deeply within me. The River is a masterpiece, in my opinion, and last weekend, he played it straight through for an appreciative NYC crowd…

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
Madison Square Garden – New York City
November 8, 2009

Part I
Wrecking Ball
Introduction to the River
Ties that Bind
Sherry Darling
Jackson Cage
Two Hearts
Independence Day
Hungry Heart
Out in the Street
Crush On You
You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)

Part II
I Wanna Marry You
The River
Point Blank
Cadillac Ranch
I’m a Rocker
Fade Away
Stolen Car
Ramrod
Price You Pay
Drive All Night
Wreck on the Highway

Part III
Waiting on a Sunny Day
Atlantic City
Badlands
Born to Run
Seven Nights to Rock
Sweet Soul Music
No Surrender
American Land
Dancing in the Dark
Can’t Help Falling in Love
Higher and Higher

Bruce’s Wild & Innocent Night in NYC

Since I saw the Boss way back in April on just the second stop of the tour here in Phoenix, the tour has rolled on across the continent, over to Europe, and back again. Since he’s been back stateside, fans have been treated to shows where Bruce and the Band play entire albums from his catalog. Darkness on the Edge of Town, Born To Run, Born in the USA

But for me, the envy factor really kicked in this weekend with the shows at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Last night, the crowd got Bruce’s second album – 1973’s The Wild, The Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle. Tonight, his classic 1980 double album, The River.

The two (well, three) albums are teeming with some of my all-time favorite Boss tunes: “Incident on 57th Street”, “4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)”, “New York City Serenade”, “The River”, “The Price You Pay”, “Stolen Car”, “Wreck On The Highway”…

In this spoiled & amazing day and age of the internet, it’s possible to sit in the comfort of one’s home and listen to the magic happen – the very next night. That’s exactly what I’m doing right now. And I thought I’d share the joy & magic for those that are interested. Enjoy…

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band
Madison Square Garden
November 7th, 2009

Part One

Thundercrack
Seeds
Prove It All Night
Hungry Heart
Working on a Dream
The E Street Shuffle [mp3]
4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy) [mp3]
Kitty’s Back [mp3]
Wild Billy’s Circus Story [mp3]

Part Two

Incident on 57th Street [mp3]
Rosalita (Come Out Tonight) [mp3]
New York City Serenade [mp3]
Waitin’ on a Sunny Day
Raise Your Hand
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Glory Days
Human Touch
Lonesome Day
The Rising
Born to Run

Part Three

Wrecking Ball
Bobby Jean
American Land
Dancing in the Dark
Higher and Higher (w/ Elvis Costello)

Here’s Bruce kicking off “The E Street Shuffle”, baton and all…