Monday, June 12, 2006

Springsteen's Mighty Wind

This weekend rocked in all sorts of ways for yours truly! Friday night, Cara and I went out to Clive Fest and got drunk whilst listening to some truly "What not to Wear" needy cover bands - we also rhode some carnie special rides... 3 minutes on the Tilt-a-Wheel of death... and some caged ferris wheel debacle.

Saturday, we snuck out with Caleb and Josh/Christy to see CARS. Another Pixar winner!

And finally, Sunday, we met up with the gang and watched the debut of DEADWOOD and ENTOURAGE! Dan-Jill and even Mr. Dublin made an appearance!

But the highlight of the weekend was the free tickets we scored to Bruce Springsteen at Wells Fargo Arena!

Now, I know quite a few people could care less about the Boss these days... but I am a definite late comer to his work. I have enjoyed a journey through his early work and some 80's stuff in the past year. But this concert was a different event! Bruce barely sold any tickets (5,350 people... that's it!) because his stop was about only one cd.

"We Shall Overcome; The Seeger Sessions"

The album is a collection of Folk songs that were sung by Pete Seeger (not written by) - a collection of tunes that varies from the Americana "John Henry" and the gospel "O Mary Don't You Weep."

I bought the disc the night before the concert, not having heard any of it and without knowing it was all folk! An excitement washed over me as I realized the Boss was doing what Billy Bragg had done a few years back with his Woody Guthrie discs (Mermaid Avenue I&II). By the second verse of "Jesse James" the second song on the album, I was completely hooked!!!

"We Shall Overcome" was produced over 9 years - but the group only met and recorded for 3 days in those years! They never practiced - Bruce just counted off the beat and away they went! It's a ho-down! It's a hootenanny!!!! It's the most fun you can have with a washboard!!!

Joking aside, this is the best stuff Springsteen has done in a long time. I did enjoy "The Rising" (he actually sang "The Rising" at the concert) and "Devils and Dust" (did that song too!) but this is the full sound - the fun sound that I love about the Boss.

The concert was a ball! Cara got us into the Farm Bureau suites and free drinks were abundent. On the floor of the Arena, people danced and sang the night away with the Boss and his group of 12 other musicians. It was quite a different experience - exciting and fun... but also full of intimate moments with Bruce as he spoke of the struggles in New Orleans or of the history of specific songs. Hell, he even mentioned the World Pork Expo at the fairgrounds!

The album is a marvel - ready to grab any listener and take them on a journey back to the days when families would sing together while hanging out on the porch... Grandpa with his guitar... singing "LOW BRIDGE - EVERBODY DOWN!" - floating on down that Erie Canal!

Here's to a month of obsessing about this record! If you don't believe me, here is a grand review up at Pitchfork!



krysta jo said...

YOU SAW BRUCE. Wow...I am impressed, jealous, and mostly amazed. I love Bruce....and have since I was young, short, and innocent. I still love him even now when I am just short and innocent!

Damfino said...

Who's innocent?

You're wonky for a reason kiddo.

Wait... that was bad.

Bruce was awesome.

Kern said...

Sounds like a good time. I'm not extremely knowledgeable about The Boss, but I have Nebraska on vinyl, and I enjoy a good deal of his early stuff. Quite the balladeer, he is.

If you can find it, I highly suggest his tune Wages of Sin, which is astounding. I think it's on Tracks, but I am unsure about that. Speaking of that tune, Damien Jurado and Rosie Thomas do a spellbinding cover of said song.

krysta jo said...

Wonky, wonky, wonky. HA HA

Sheriff Officer Greg the Bunny said...

Thank you for inviting me to this post.