Last night I fulfilled a 15 year old dream of mine. I saw Bruce Springsteen live. Ever since I first jumped around my bedroom to Born to Run, and read everything I could about him from books out of the local library, I’ve wanted to see him live. Mainly because that’s what he does best. Last night the long wait was over and it was entirely worth it. I have no idea how to write this in a coherent way that isn’t just babbling over and over again “He was amazing…”.
So, in no particular order here are my highlights and favorite moments:

Getting to go with Melinda, a fellow fan and someone who genuinely gets Bruce, who isn’t being polite because I love him. Who was just as excited as me and just as thrilled on the tube on the way home.

The first song, not being able to stop smiling like a wide mouthed grinning idiot because that speck on the stage was actually Bruce Springsteen.

The way the whole set was put together thoughtfully. He told a story throughout the songs of the evening. He took us across America, from being lost in the back of beyond, to the pain of being let down by dreams that don’t last, to cynicism and then to redemption, hope and the joy of being alive.

The gruff growl counting the band in, one, two, a one, two, three, FOUR. Cue explosion of sound on the ‘four’.

Music that reaches inside your soul, twists and turns and makes you want to explode with joy and inexpressible emotions.

Singing Promised Land and knowing the difference in singing now to singing as a messed up 14 year old. These lyrics had so much meaning for me back then and now serve as a reminder of how far things have come.

“I’ve done my best to live the right way
I get up every morning and go to work each day
But your eyes go blind and your blood runs cold
Sometimes I feel so weak I just want to explode
Explode and tear this town apart
Take a knife and cut this pain from my heart
Find somebody itching for something to start

There’s a dark cloud rising from the desert floor
I packed my bags and I’m heading straight into the storm
Gonna be a twister to blow everything down
That ain’t got the faith to stand its ground
Blow away the dreams that tear you apart
Blow away the dreams that break your heart
Blow away the lies that leave you nothing but lost and brokenhearted”

Likewise the moment in Badlands, delighting in the lyric; “It ain’t no sin to be glad that you’re alive.”

The exquisitely dark harmonica playing on Reason to Believe, normally a song of hope, it turned down a road with black clouds on the horizon and cynically wondered how anyone can find a reason to believe in this world.

The despair finding it’s death in the hope of redemption. Redemption coming through love, an open road and the prospect of a Sunny Day. Hope bleeding out all over the place.

The encore. The eruption of joy at Born to Run into Dancing in the dark. Every person on their feet singing loud.

The other fans. Everyone there loved this man and his songs, everyone joined in, even on the new stuff. The older man next to me who battled with his English reserve all night and then let himself go in the encore.

2 and a half hours of relentless, stirring, delightful, empowering, hopeful, delicious rock and roll.

This song sums it all up, not a classic Springsteen but more of a tribute to the genius of music. Happy sigh.

“Day after day I’m more confused
Then I look for the light through the pourin’ rain
You know, that’s a game, that I hate to lose
I’m feelin’ the strain, ain’t it a shame

Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away
Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away

Beginin’ to think, that I’m wastin’ time
And I don’t understand the things I do
The world outside looks so unkind
And I’m countin’ on you, you can carry me through

And when my mind is free
You know your melody can move me
And when I’m feelin’ blue
The guitars come through to soothe me

Thanks for the joy you’ve given me
I want you to know that I believe in your song
And rhythm, and rhyme, and harmony
You helped me along, you’re makin’ me strong

Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away
Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away”

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1 Response to Joy.

  1. Steffy says:

    I put those lyrics on my ‘favourite quotes’ on facebook, but I decided to take them down again as I realised that all of the ones I’d put up were about being miserable! And EVERYONE knows there’s more to me than that….!

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