I’m not really able to write about music. I don’t have the knowledge, the skills, the talent. I really began to sniff around good music just few years ago, and Springsteen stole the show from that moment on, so no, I’m not able to speak about music like those who make you see a song just with a few words, and make you listen to a melody while you read their written piece.
But I sure can speak of emotions, and I got plenty of those on my way to Stockholm to see two of his shows, deep feelings, some actually new to me.
Going abroad for the first time to see a rock concert it’s crazy; finding your friends at the gate, seeing all those Bruce’s shirts around, knowing that we are all there for the same reason and thus having a strange bonding experience with them, even if you don’t actually know them, even if you see that they have seen many more shows than you, but still they have that fire burning inside.
I love how Bruce’s guitars are so scratched, used, old. They have been there with him forever, from the beginning, they carry the scars of the road. It’s like his music have righteously to come from them and only them because it was born there, like driving around your son in the car in which you have made love so many times, maybe dreaming of him.
He has little hands, and stocky fingers, but when he has them on his guitar, you just don’t notice, he has a divine grace. It’s a lifetime with his hands on a guitar, you know, his life and always a hand on his Fender.
At the show, he’s there for you, you really feel him close, intimate even. It’s difficult to explain, on stage he gets close to his people, his crowd, he throws himself on them, he picks up ideas on how to transform any date of the tour in THE date, the one show you’ll remember Oh my god do you recall that one??? And in any case you always have the impression that you can meet Bruce right after the show in any bar outside the stadium with a beer in his hand asking how did you like the concert. You don’t have this feeling of Divinity you get with other artists, with the Stones or Metallica, they are the Gods onstage and you are the crowd. You don’t have any of this with Bruce, he’s alive, he’s human, he’s there at the show right with you.
and then there’s the energy: you cannot stop dancing and singing, and that’s how he wants you, crazy and happy. It’s pure joy, atomic power, warmth, heat.
It’s a power load, you feel so alive there at the show; and you bring home that power, and it stays with you for days, months even. There will be a moment when you’ll feel blue, or sad, or discouraged, and you’ll think to that song, you’ll go online to see two or three moments of that show, and that happiness is right there again in your heart, and you smile alone at your computer, and all is well.
Well, let’s see.
Interminable journeys, endless waiting, friends, rock’n’roll, guitars, passion, adrenaline, dozing off, happiness, improvised beds, that amazing feeling of being home when your home is actually miles away, years in between but you see your Bruce buds and it’s like you’ve seen them just the day before, shattered sleep, the Flood above us, pink windbreakers and the glasses completely fogged, being happy all together like children even if next year I’m 38, Clarence’s images on screen and thinking of my father, foam rubber in the car after the show, The Six Million Dollar Man driving us home in the night, the endless laughing, that stupendous feeling of being normal even if you’re doing bat shit crazy things.
And then there’s still people who’s asking you: Why are you doing it?
See my smile? I’ve been rarely THAT happy in my life. I mean completely, totally, nothing like that amazingly happy. But each and every time I’m at a Bruce’s show, I’m that happy.
I’ve seen just one show, for now. Until two years ago I was not a genuine fan, I just knew some songs, and I had always refused to go to a concert because not really knowing the music I was afraid I would not have been able to appreciate the whole show. I know how silly this sounds now, believe me. Anyways. You know how it goes: you finally see him live, you have your rock’n’roll Baptism, and you’ll never never ever be the same. I just want to say two extra things. One, is that after three o four songs, I was thinking As a rule, in life as in a rock show, you don’t want to get off to flying start and burn everything you have in the first five minutes, and then jump the gun. So I thought Well he has done two mega rock songs, now he’ll set to something less dramatic, less passionate, or he’ll never be able to maintain this kind of energy and adrenaline for three hours. AH!
The second thought I want to share, is that I’ve read some criticism in regard to the end of the show: how is predictable and less exciting than the rest of the concert. But to me it was unbelievable, all the lights on, girls who can dance with Bruce, any kind of people, old men, kids, old women who ask to dance with rest of the band, ok, permission granted, there’s just this party atmosphere but it’s a big rock show! and it’s rock’n’roll and yet it seems a small country festival, everybody knows your name and above all Bruce knows you…and they all laugh, the people dancing in the field and on the upper floors and the people onstage, and you’re there with your friends and smile and laugh…It’s a unique sense of fiesta, it’s wonderful.