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So this was excellent. I know that various critics have been mouthing off about Springsteen and saying that he's not so relevant these days, or whatever. But let's face it: if you still enjoy hearing his songs, whether they're 2 years old or 30 years old, he's relevant to you, and I'm definitely in that category.

He has incredible stamina for a man his age (he'll be 63 in about a week), and he clearly thrives on audience reaction. Watching him absorb energy from the fans in this concert, I found myself thinking about Jackson Browne's "The Load Out," in which he describes how grueling, mentally and physically, touring can be:

We just pass the time in our hotel rooms
And wander 'round backstage
Till those lights come up and we hear that crowd
And we remember why we came

People you've got the power over what we do
You can sit there and wait or you can pull us through ...
Springsteen played for about 3½ hours. He didn't play all my favorites (I would have loved to hear "Mary's Place" from The Rising, for example) but he played enough of them:

Prove It All Night ('78 intro)
My Love Will Not Let You Down
The Ties That Bind
Hungry Heart
We Take Care of Our Own
Wrecking Ball
Death to My Hometown
My City of Ruins
Sprit in the Night
Blinded By the Light
Jack of All Trades
Jackson Cage
She's the One
Johnny 99
Darlington County
Shackled and Drawn
Waitin' on a Sunny Day
The Promised Land
Racing in the Street
The Rising
Land of Hope and Dreams
* * *
We Are Alive
Thunder Road
Born to Run
Detroit Medley
Dancing in the Dark
Tenth Avenue Freeze-out
American Land
Twist and Shout

    - from Backstreets.com, which also has a good review of the concert)
"My City of Ruins" included a break to introduce each band member. People went especially nuts for "Spirit in the Night." Then most people in the crowd rose to their feet when Roy Bittan struck the opening piano notes to "Badlands" and didn't sit down 'til it was clear that the E Street Band h was gone for the night and not coming back. The rocking-out got really serious with the oldies set (Detroit Medley) of "Devil with a Blue Dress On" and "Good Golly Miss Molly." "Dancing in the Dark" had the audience singing along with every word. "Tenth Avenue Freeze-out" slammed to a halt at the line "the Big Man joined the band," and a video montage of images of Clarence Clemons was played (his nephew Jake Clemons was playing his uncle's sax parts during the concert).

A great time was had by all (really), although the Mr. was definitely uncomfortable with some of the volume. (My ears still feel a bit stuffy, but I expected it.) We have swag (a tour T-shirt for me, and a hoodie for the Mr.). And we didn't get to bed until 2:00 a.m. (part of that was the Metro trip back.)

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