Cape Town Night Two – 28 January 2014

Met Pete Seeger 1Last night I felt like an experienced fan. Gone were the anxiousness, the jitters and the fear of the unknown of Sunday night. In was the heady feeling of something great drawing near. I knew the venue, how the process of entering is handled (although they made some changes), where I like to stand, what to expect of the audience.

Of course I knew what to expect of Bruce. Has he ever had a bad show Continue reading

Cape Town Day One – 26 January 2014

Belville-VelodromeNabyWhen I was privileged to see Bruce Springsteen in the UK (Sunderland and Manchester) in 2012, I never thought for one moment that he would ever come to South Africa. Well, for that matter, when I became a fan in late 2009 I never thought I would see him live.

Bruce his proved me wrong again and again. He taught me to dream and to work for my dreams. This enhanced my writing career, but most of all my personal life. So I, not an adventurous traveler, in 2012 managed to find a dear friend to guide me through the terrors of the level of public transport we only dream about here. Aged only a few years younger than Bruce, I made it to the pit in Sunderland – and survived to tell Continue reading

Reasons I admire Bruce Springsteen (3): Unique combination of music and lyrics

Vooroor by fans in pitI am constantly amazed at Bruce’s talent to marry the depth and scope of his lyrics to the wonderful tunes that make them accessible to thousands (millions?!) of people. Three of the best examples (in my opinion) are Badlands, The promised land, Dancing in the dark and Better days. All of them songs with a profound meaning, but also a whole stadium of people can dance on that music.

I have once read somebody describing one of the shows as bipolar. This person found the distance between the often sad lyrics and the exuberant music too much. Personally I have often wondered how Bruce himself can handle it. Maybe the answer lies in the question: He can handle the sadness in the lyrics through the joy of the music.

Of course there are many songs where the music is just as sad as the lyrics. I often find these difficult to handle. The whole of the Nebraska album is certainly the best example, with Tom Joad not far behind. I admire those fans who can really enjoy these songs. I certainly need the music to lift me up.

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

Fight depression – and win (4): Understanding depression

This link can change your life forever. It can be the start to discovering there are certain, definitive things you can DO to conquer depression. Yes, we are not hopeless victims anymore – we can take charge and fight this beast! In Springsteen language: You can take the first steps out of the badlands of depression into the Continue reading

Diary of a depression fighter … Why?

The idea for this has been haunting me for some time now. (If you are not yet aware of the link between my personal fight against depression and my love for Bruce’s music, do read about my  own journey at https://marilebetterdays.wordpress.com/these-are-better-days/ and https://marilebetterdays.wordpress.com/2011/01/31/out-of-the-badlands-into-the-promised-land/).  I have started a diary about depression on my personal blog.  (in Afrikaans, my home language) after having some success with my diary of a romance writer. My first post has created so much reaction that I decided to Continue reading

Out of the badlands into the promised land

Until recently I have concentrated on the positive side of one of the songs of Bruce Springsteen I love best, namely The Promised Land.
If I could take one moment into my hands

Mister I ain’t a boy, no I’m a man
And I believe in a promised land
And then one day I just saw the explanation of years of my own struggle in the rest of the song. I spent years of unhappiness in the wrong career, feeling exactly as Bruce describes here:
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 whole town apart
Take a knife and cut this pain from my heart
Find somebody itching for something to start
And all the time I kept Continue reading

Why I admire Bruce Springsteen (6): A song for every emotion

In a previous post I wondered if Bruce has an idea how much his work means emotionally to so many people. Yes, I know there have been numerous programs and books about it, but still, does he understand? CAN he understand, not being a fan, but being the man himself? His work just resonates with so many emotions.
It ranges from the youthful playfullness of Out in the Street, through the anguish of the Darkness album, the beautiful love songs on the new The Promise, the hope and determination to make a better life in Badlands and The promised land, the celebration of Continue reading