Great new documentary for Bruce fans!

Dans met maA few years ago I – being a lone fan in a country where Bruce’s work before and after Born in the USA is little known – to my delight discovered Julian Garcia’s Springsteen show Groove it all night on Home Grown Radio NJ.
This led to numerous exhausting nights, as the time slot was for me in South Africa between 3 and 5 in the morning in winter (if I remember correctly) and between 4 and 6 in summer. Only true fans will understand somebody doing this!

By the time the programme was discontinued due to the barrage of Springsteen activities 2012 brought with it, I had luckily also discovered Tom Cunningham‘s Bruce Brunch on 105.7 The Hawk (which falls right in the time when ordinary South Africans take their Sunday nap). 

Great was my surprise when I received a message from Julian yesterday (on the saddest Valentine’s Day South Africa has had in some time, due to the Oscar Pistorius tragedy) that he has been busy working on a documentary about people who had been Continue reading

Quick review: Bruce by Peter Ames Carlin

BruceSo much has been written about this book, and by more knowledgeable fans and musical fundi’s than myself, that I am not going to try and construct a detailed review here. I will leave you with just a few thoughts:

  • The book is an easy and pleasurable read. Not overly flowery, but written in beautiful English.
  • But, with due respect to the author, the most beautiful English is that spoken by The Boss himself. The direct quotations are mostly little gems that show us why Bruce Springsteen’s work still has so much impact – the man has a wonderful way to say even the most basic things.
  • Lots and lots of research was done and carefully used, an immense task.
  • Some of the detail of the processes in the various studios became a bit tedious to me, but for fans who are technically minded it may be very interesting.
  • I was a bit surprised to find so much input from the ever quiet Garry Tallent. And quite a lot of it came over as a bit negative. We are so used to him, always there, always in his place, that it comes as a surprise that he may not always have been too happy in that spot.
  • On the other hand, the total absence of Continue reading

No surrender? Not always a good idea …

As I am listening to the tracker from Gothenburg, Sweden, I can gladly announce that I have surrendered … 🙂

For a painful month I have tried to persuade myself that I have seen two Springsteen shows in my life, that it was a great, great blessing – and that it was enough.

It was a terrible month. (I must add that other factors attributed to Continue reading

When the dream turns around and bites you in the back (or maybe the butt)

Yes, I am very much for dreaming.

I have been doing it my whole life long.

But only much later in life I started dreaming with a purpose.

Yes, I can publish a short story in a magazine. And many more.

Yes, I can publish a romance novel. And many more.

Yes, I can publish a romantic novel. And a few more.

Yes, I can decide to see Bruce Springsteen if he tours again.

And I can do it. And experience a level of Continue reading

Manchester (continued)

About ten days have passed and I seem to have lost the essence of the show experience. I find it difficult to remember detail about any of the songs. As dearly as I would have loved to catch time in my hands and hold it, to hang on to the essence of the experience, I could not do it. It is over. It is gone. I will have to find a way to deal with the sense of loss that threatens to overwhelm me at the moment.

But I can see myself very clearly on both nights. In Sunderland in the pit, absolutely overwhelmed by the mass of people pressed around me (have read that somebody said he has Continue reading

Manchester – 22 June 2012

  1. To my surprise I found Manchester a lovely city. If we only had more time …
  2. It often rains in Manchester. As in all the places I have been on this tour.
  3. The special buses to the stadium were wonderful – once we had found them.
  4. Rain driven by wind is even wetter than rain falling straight down.
  5. Ethiad Stadium is large and imposing and quite beautiful. Even if you are no football fan.
  6. What was called the box office in Sunderland, was here called something else. (Can’t remember – but we found it in the end.)
  7. You only feel it’s real when you have that ticket in your hand.
  8. No, I don’t know what I will do with Continue reading

Sunderland – 21 June 2012

  1. Dreams can really come true.
  2. Reality can be even better than the dream.
  3. I could look forward to the shows like a child, something that I have lost long ago. And I was not disappointed.
  4. Bruce Springsteen gives his all for his audiences. Every time.
  5. I can handle a day of fourteen hours.
  6. Also when eleven of those are spent on my feet.
  7. Two small sherries just before noon can help some. 🙂 Continue reading

Seeing the Boss

Unfortunately I cannot post while I am still travelling.

Will be back home next week.

I have so much to say!

What I can say in the minute I have now, is that Bruce has delivered.

As he always seems to do.

Also that I was in the pit and I coped very well.

Also that he is very beautiful up close.

I saw a gentle spirit and a big heart.

And it made me very happy.

PS. Photo proudly taken by myself (Sunderland).

Diary of a depression fighter: Missing the music

On this wonderful trip through Ireland and Scotland – on my way to my first ever Springsteen shows – I have encountered depression quite unexpectedly.

One of the reasons for this has to do with the lack of opportunity to really immerse myself in the music, as I have become used to.

At home Bruce’s music has become integrated into my whole life. I usually go to bed with either The Promise or 18 Tracks, I work on The Rising, BTR, Darkness, The River. For some reason I often have Backstreets on repeat while I am hurriedly preparing to go out. I daily work out on any of the live concert DVD’s.

For others this looks like obsession. For me it has become a way to help me handle life.

My family – although I love them dearly – are not fans. On the trip there has been only opportunity for short indulgences into Springsteen music. There was no privacy and no me time.

After two weeks I have realized that the music is loosing its power for me, because I do not absorb enough of it. I even started to find it difficult to remember why I REALLY am on this trip.

The tour is over and we are stationed in Edinburgh at the moment. Today’s Bruce Brunch on The Hawk helped a lot to make me feel part of the Springsteen community again.

The dream is alive again. And Sunderland is drawing near. 🙂

The

Looking back 9: 4 December 2011 – When is it time to let go of (part of) a dream?

I was not raised with confidence, but with fear.

Of course, today I can totally understand it. My dear mother was married when she was nothing but an innocent teenager to a man 25 years older.
My father died when I was a preschooler and my only recollection of him is of an old and very sick man. But he must have been totally besotted by this girl to leave his fiancée of several years and marry my mother. For those days it was certainly a very unacceptable thing in society. Certainly he was – for those days – a good husband to my mother. They raised a large family and when he died, she was left with enough to go on.
And go on, she did. Of course, today I can understand how difficult it must have been for her. She did not have any experience in managing Continue reading

Looking back 8: 1 December 2011 – Dreams can come true

Of the many things I have learned from Bruce, the idea of striving for a dream is certainly one of the most prominent. And where is a better place to start than at the dream of seeing him live?
After much thought (and a few tears) I have decided to let the Norway part of the dream go. Painful, but necessary. But today, thanks to a dear friend  (whom I have met exactly once), we got tickets for Sunderland Continue reading

Looking back 7: 27 November – Feel the fear …

I read somewhere that Max once said “Bruce makes you do things you never thought you could do.” Well, for me this certainly is true.

Firstly, I have never before admired any entertainer (and no, I don’t think this word even begins to describe what Bruce does) so much and made such a study of his work.  I have never allowed anybody except my nearest and Continue reading

Looking back 1: 18 May 2011 – A lifelong campaign to see the Boss live

In my country the idea of huge live music shows in stadiums is only just settling in with recent visits by the likes of U2, Neil Diamond and Roxette. For a middle-aged (hate that word!) woman it is fairly weird to have a desire to attend something like that, unless it is somebody like Neil, who was on his height of popularity when you were young. I am also aware of the fact that Bruce will most likely never come to SA. I am still amazed Continue reading

Looking back 2: 21 November 2011 – Can the dream come true?

Screaming through the Springsteen community is the following short note from the official Springsteen website: (It was gone and has just come back on again – maybe due to overload??)

http://brucespringsteen.net/news/index.html

Please, please … If it’s true, I might be able to make it to a show … or even a few … Am feeling a bit silly, because long term fans who have seen scores of shows might not understand my feeling of jittery anticipation. Or … thinking about it – they might just understand perfectly!

Why I admire Bruce Springsteen (12) – A man who can deal with loss

Since Bruce and his work became part of my life towards the end of 2009, he has lost quite a few important persons in his life.

Through death, I mean.

Could be he has lost some to life also. As we all sometimes do.

None of these  losses has stopped him in his tracks.

I am sure there were private moments of despair. And maybe Continue reading

Facing the fear

I was raised in fear.

No, not fear for my life or my possessions. Lucky me.

But mostly fear of the unknown, the fear that something will go wrong somewhere. My dear old mother was a worrier. She worried constantly about everybody in the huge family. Will the one who is travelling have an accident? Will the one with a cold get pneumonia? Will the one doing an exam fail?

Of course her worry was born out of love. And of course life sometimes Continue reading

It’s only a glass of water … Or is it?

I am sure quite a lot of fond Aaawww’s escaped from Springsteen fans all around the world when the video clip of Bruce handing the dehydrated lady  the glass of water and the energy drink hit the internet earlier this week.

Ever since I have been wondering about that little incident. Was it really special? Was it not what any decent person would do? Why did none of the band members do it? Was it only because she was right in front of Bruce? Was it because he is the leader and nobody does anything much (but play and enjoy themselves!) without his consent? Did he perhaps feel like Continue reading

Why I admire Bruce Springsteen (11) – A man who can take mistakes in his stride

When Bruce made the mistake to call out the wrong city during the WOAD tour in 2009, I had just recently come on board as a Springsteen fan. At the time I did not think much about it. It was a little mistake of no consequence, wasn’t it?

Of course, in the world of show biz no mistake is a little mistake. Even the smallest slip gets picked up by the media and the social media and spread around the world in no time at all. This is surely enough to scare most people out of ever trying to do anything new, especially in front of an audience.

Now, we all know if you never try something new, you will never make a mistake. But you will hardly Continue reading

So happy …

Yes, miracles do happen – it just did for me!

People who know me are aware that I am not a morning person. I am especially bad with surprise phone calls early in the morning. And my pet hate is people who call early on a Sunday morning and do not identify themselves.

Well, this morning I made an exception. Because the caller was Bruce Springsteen himself. And of course I recognized his voice immediately, after his call last year when he offered me a prime seat at his show in Cape Town. This time the news was Continue reading

Wrecking ball lyrics: We are alive

At the first listen We are alive seemed to be a rather weird song. Quite gross, to be honest. (If you don’t agree, just read the last verse.) Beautiful lines about tragedy and death set to a jolly little tune which makes you want to dance. Although Bruce  is a genius at setting heartbreaking lyrics to catchy tunes and driving rhythms, this song seems to go too far in that Continue reading

Laurel Snyder shares the experience

Do enjoy this wonderful post about seeing Bruce for the first time last night in Atlanta:

I saw Springsteen last night, for the first time. My sister, who’s been  moving heaven and earth to attend his concerts since she was a kid, flew to Atlanta to take me. To be there with me for my first time.  Even so, I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Not from Bruce– I never doubted him. But from myself.

To see someone in person, after you’ve loved them for so Continue reading