Addicted To Vinyl Musical thoughts from the open road, with headphones on


The Wild, The Innocent and the Bruce show I will not be attending

When Bruce Springsteen started doing the full album performance thang recently with a performance of Born to Run in Chicago, a few of us conversed about the albums that we'd really like to see him perform.

You know the ones I'm talking about - The Wild, The Innocent and The E Street Shuffle, and Greetings From Asbury Park - two great albums that would elicit a full-on fan freakout, but unfortunately they're not exactly the A-list albums that would drive ticket sales.

Still, it was a fun thought.

And now, a thought that at least partially will become reality for the fans attending this weekend's shows at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

The Saturday night gig will feature The Wild, The Innocent, and The E Street Shuffle, and Sunday night attendees will nab the full double album performance treatment of The River.


The Wild, The Innocent and the E Street Shuffle

For those of you that haven't pulled out a copy of The Wild, The Innocent and The E Street Shuffle recently, here's a look at the track listing:

1. "The E Street Shuffle" – 4:31
2. "4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)" – 5:36
3. "Kitty's Back" – 7:09
4. "Wild Billy's Circus Story" – 4:47
5. "Incident on 57th Street" – 7:45
6. "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)" – 7:04
7. "New York City Serenade" – 9:55

Uh, yeah.  Mindblowing.

I know that blog pal John Hannibal is planning to try his luck at getting a ticket for the Saturday night show - and ATV friend Deb Filcman will be in the building as well.  While I'm a tad jealous that they will be attending, I think that this development bodes well for the Bruce show on Tuesday here in Cleveland at Quicken Loans Arena.

With the River tunes fresh on his mind, I think that chances are good that a couple of choice songs from that album might wander into the setlist.  Looking at the track listing, I realize that I've been lucky enough to see about 80 percent of these tracks performed live.  If Christmas were to come early for me, I'd probably pick these three songs as my top three requests for Cleveland:

1.  "Sherry Darling" - I mentioned this one in my "open letter" last month - some Bruce fans might consider this one pretty standard, but I always enjoy hearing it.

2.  "Drive All Night" - I'm still marveling at the St. Louis setlist from 2008 - "Adam Raised A Cain" AND "Drive All Night" in the same show?  Add in "Rendezvous" and several others, and it was a killer show to remember.  I'm jealous of all of you STL folks that caught that show!

3.  "Stolen Car" - If there's one reason to hold a ticket for Sunday night's MSG show, this might be it - "Stolen Car" is a track from the Bruce catalog that doesn't get nearly enough stage time, in my opinion.

I realize each time that I attend a Bruce show, that it really doesn't matter much what he plays on the night - so much of it for me is all about being there.  You enjoy hearing the tracks that you know he's going to pull out, and then there is the great thrill of the unknown.  Witness the moment in St. Louis a couple of weeks ago when Bruce held up an elaborately made sign that said ""Bruce Play Piano".  I told Annie, "Bruce is going to play something really cool".  As a Bruce fan, your mind immediately starts racing towards all of the oddball tracks that he might pull out at a moment like this.  I was thinking that we might get something along the lines of "The Promise", but I was just as happy when he sat down and began a solo piano rendition of "For You" instead.

My personal excitement level for hearing the entire Born to Run album in St. Louis was relatively low, but on the night, I suddenly realized how excited I was, knowing that I was definitely going to hear "Thunder Road", "Backstreets" and "Jungleland", all in the same setlist.  The version of "Backstreets" was right up there with some of my favorite versions from "back in the day".  As Dave Lifton and I discussed earlier this week on Twitter, there came a point towards the end where you were sure that he was about to make the famous 1978 transition into "Sad Eyes".  It didn't happen, but it remained the most powerful performance of "Backstreets" that I've seen to date.

As the tour winds down, the guessing game continues as to whether we might see any more surprise full album performances - is there an electric Nebraska performance waiting somewhere in the wings?  Rolling Stone went on record earlier this week in favor of full album performances of Human Touch and Lucky Town - a move that would certainly cause grumbling with the fans, although I'm in agreement with RS - I'd love to see it.

On the short list of things that I don't want to see - let's talk about sign requests for a moment.  You're going to the show in Cleveland, and you're making a sign with your favorite song on it, hoping that Bruce might play your beloved song.  Bruce goes out into the crowd and grabs a nice collection of signs, eventually whittling the collected signs down to four or five choice numbers.

Proper sign request etiquette should dictate that your request should NOT include any songs from Working On A Dream.  Nothing against the album - although I'm on record as someone that is not much of a fan - BUT, shouldn't we focus our sign requesting energies on getting some truly cool Springsteen nuggets into the setlist?

That's what I'm thinking.

And so help me God, I will make it my personal mission to find the person that comes to the show armed with a sign request for "Queen of the Supermarket".  Put that thought out of your mind, right now!

To those of you that are checking out the MSG shows this weekend - enjoy!  For the rest of us that will be rockin' it in Cleveland and beyond - it's going to be good.  Because tramps like us.......

Well, you know.

  • maureenfox

    Found your blog thru a Twitter tweet from “blogness”. Just wanted to thank you for including that YouTube video of “Drive All Night”–once the intro was over and the music started it was audibly and visually clear as a bell. And beautiful live. I am lucky enough to have bought tickets to Sat.'s WIESS show, and looking forward to it so much. But hearing this made me feel a bit greedy and needy for tickets to Sun.'s show. I would love to hear this, “Point Blank”, “Independence Day” and “The Price You Pay” and the title track in their true context.

  • Matt

    Maureen – glad you dug that! I'm sure that Saturday's show will be memorable. Regarding the other songs that you mentioned – I was lucky enough to see “Point Blank” during Springsteen's two night stand here in Cleveland in 1999 – it was VERY cool……always has been one of my favorite Bruce tunes!

  • maureenfox

    He played Point Blank in Mansfield, MA this summer as well, and it was
    one of a few Holy Grail songs (pretty much at the top of my list), but
    I was sitting in a crappy section, and the crowd wasn't into it, and
    it disappointed me, in all honesty. Would love to get another shot at
    it, as well as the others, but not too psyched about getting a room in
    NY/taking another roundtrip from Providence (even though that's
    free!), and trying to get more tickets.

  • maureenfox


    BTW, saw your Record Store Day story–didn't know there was another
    coming up–maybe I'll try to hit & run a shop in Manhattan–any idea
    what the Abbey Road package is going for, and what sort of allotment
    each store would likely have?

  • Fran

    I'm a Dutch girl and me and my hub are big fans. We've seen every show in Holland since 1993. I missed the Dancing in the Dark tour but my hub didn't.

    One of my best friends is in NY for both the shows this weekend and we are so jealous because we had plans to go too but financially it wasn't a good time.

    I've been to Torino this summer where I first heard him play Drive all night and it brought me to tears: so beautiful!

  • Stacy

    My favorite album will always be Darkness. But just hearing Adam Raised A Cain at Tuesday's show here in Cleve would be great. And then Candy's Room, and then….and then…

  • Norrie

    Oh man – jealousy does not even cover it. Went to paris to see the Devils and Dust tour an dthis clip of Drive All Night is just immense…..enjoy you lucky MSG souls

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  • Sara

    this was my first year ever seeing him live and i made it count with four shows. got to hear “sherry darling” at one of the last few philly shows and i think it will forever be one of the highlights from my entire year.

  • Matt

    Hope you got a copy of the Abbey Road – I think that the allotment comes down to how many copies any of the stores might have ordered. It wasn't an automatic stock item here, like many of the Record Store Day items were earlier this year.

  • Matt

    Fran – glad to see you here! God, Drive All Night would have been great!

  • Matt

    Alas, no Sherry Darling for me here in CLE – but it was still an AMAZING show!

  • maureenfox

    I was going to buy a copy for my nephew, but he decided he didn't want
    I had just bought him a regular copy of the vinyl last Christmas.
    We found it in Manhattan at Rock & Soul for $49.99–not an awful
    price, considering the T-Shirt & limited status of 5K sets.
    BTW, WIESS was FANTASTIC at MSG–I was in the Pit for the first time–
    about five feet from the stage, just left of center.
    Wow–what a show, opening with Thundercrack, and the sheer power of
    the horns on that album–it was just a thrill.
    Anyway, thanks for getting back to me re: Abbey Road!


  • Laura

    I spotted a Queen of the Supermarket sign at the show. Did you find the person responsible?

  • Matt

    Laura – how funny was that? I'd like to think that it was someone with a sense of humor that saw this post, or the related Tweets on Twitter. I laughed when I saw it….and I was grateful that they were far enough back that there was no way in hell that the request would be granted!

    I wanted to blog about that, but hadn't gotten to it, so I'm glad you dropped by!

  • Laura

    I laughed my ass off! Then had to try to explain to my dad what was so funny.

    BTW, here's some video I took at the show if anyone is interested.

  • Matt

    Laura – how funny was that? I'd like to think that it was someone with a sense of humor that saw this post, or the related Tweets on Twitter. I laughed when I saw it….and I was grateful that they were far enough back that there was no way in hell that the request would be granted!

    I wanted to blog about that, but hadn't gotten to it, so I'm glad you dropped by!

  • Laura

    I laughed my ass off! Then had to try to explain to my dad what was so funny.

    BTW, here's some video I took at the show if anyone is interested.

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