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October 22, 1999
I've seen a lot of music in my day, but there is one thing that stands above all.
Unless and until you've seen BRUCE in concert, preferably with the E Street Band, you've seen nothing.
Back in July I made some observations about BRUCE and the boys (and gal) after watching the first three numbers from his first concert from what was formerly called the Meadowlands and now has some corporate sponsor-type name, live on VH1. (Well, that was quite a sentence.) I'm here to tell you frankly, if I'd searched my memory banks long and hard enough, I would have remembered then, that there is nothing that compares to BRUCE live.
The show was at the newly built, and just opened for this event, Staples Center. (Another in the long list of corporate-sponsored arenas.) Sunday night was the first show. It was pandemonium around there. Will-call didn't know how to handle the actual picking up of the tickets and the ushers didn't know where any of the sections and/or seats were--to name just two of the myriad of problems that there were that night.
Well, clearly they've gotten their acts together over there.
The venue is very nice. Amazingly clean--OK, it's only been open less than a week, so the floors haven't had an opportunity to get too sticky. Lots of impeccably clean bathrooms--I went several times and there was never a line and there was always toilet paper. Lots of concession stands. Lines not too bad there. All over the place are video monitors. (Periodically pithy Staples Center facts are shown on these monitors: did you know that there is more than 40,000 square feet of tiling in the Staples Center. Use it at your next cocktail party. Go ahead.)
But back to BRUCE. OK, BRUCE is 50. I hope I'm in that kind of shape when I'm 50, because pushing 40, I don't come close.
I was a bit trepidatious about going. Chuck and I had talked about it back in July. He was wishy washy. I forgot about it and then he was here. Spur of the moment Tuesday I called the ticket broker to see if I could get any seats. She had some and would give me a good deal. I surprised Chuck with the tickets. He wasn't as thrilled as I'd hoped. He didn't think BRUCE could live up to his past BRUCE experiences. I mean, the guy is 50. But as I said, I hope that when I'm 50 I can rock like that.
One of the things I think that was holding me back was that I thought I was too old to do this sort of thing. Then I talked to a girlfriend who saw him in Chicago. From her seat looking down onto the floor she saw a sea of bald heads. I had to laugh. It was going to be OK.
The guy who sat next to me at the Sports Arena in 84 was going to go see BRUCE this time. And guess what, he's gotten 15 years older too. I started getting very excited.
I thought the sound for the first number or so was a bit tinny but either I acclimated or they adjusted something because the rest of the night sounded great.
I can't remember everything they played but I will tell you there was no Jungle Land for this girl that night. Major disappointment. Born to Run pretty much made up for it. As they started the song the house lights came up. Every single person in the place was on their feet, dancing and singing along.
There was an amazing rendition of 10th Avenue Freeze Out. Thunder Road and Because the Night were great too.
I was on my feet dancing and singing along for more than half the concert. Me and the 20,000 other BRUCE fans there. There were a few moments when the emotion nearly overcame me.
Now Chuck is busily trying to find us two tickets for tomorrow's show--BRUCE's last in LA.
For three hours last night I wasn't an almost 40 year old suburban mother with a toddler. I was with BRUCE.
Update: 10/24, 2:20 a.m.
Just home from an amazing day and night.
We had brunch in Chinatown Saturday morning, and afterwards we decided to take a quick cruise by the Staples Center to see if by some remote chance there would be any seats available for tonight's show. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, and all that.
After a 3 hour wait our patience paid off. Floor seats, face value: $67.50 each, for what turned out to be an absolutely amazing show. A million times better than Thursday and Thursday rocked.
We ended up sitting with all the people we'd been in line with all afternoon. It was a party.
The entire time we were on line waiting for tickets I was frantically calling around trying to scare up a baby-sitter. The people in line even offered to have their spouses or parents stay with Zoe so we could go to the show. Grandma came to the rescue at the zero hour.
No Jungle Land tonight either, but also trepidation on anyone's part.
Until next time. . .