NerdMusic: An Open (and Embarrassingly Gushy) Letter To The Boss and The E Street Band
Dear the heart-stopping, pants-dropping, house-rocking, earth-quaking, booty-shaking, Viagra-taking, love-making, legendary E Street Band,
Five days is a long time to still be trying to articulate how you felt about a rock concert, but it’s the rare rock concert that still plays on a loop in your head for five days afterwards.
Both intimate and as epic as anything I’ve ever seen, the show you brought to the Millenium Stadium completely destroyed any preconceived notions I had about what these kind of gigs are supposed to be. I think it speaks to how well the Stadium has been built that the roof didn’t blow off when you launched into Cynthia or that the foundations withstood the stamping of our feet during Death to my Hometown.
I’ve seen countless shows that have dazzled with phenomenal scale and astonishing productions. I’ve seen shows that rival the Cirque de Soleil’s spectacle but nothing has come close to hearing, from Bruce Springsteen’s own lips, how he acquired his first guitar. About how, even though he couldn’t play it, he liked looking at it because it represented possibility. And nothing has compared to having the pleasure of watching an ensemble of staggeringly talented musicians such as yourselves, and of course the healthy dollop of rock and roll attitude you threw in didn’t hurt either.
It was a show about music, and the inherent awesome power that Rock and Roll has. The power to quicken your heart or to bring you to tears. Your show was a stark and glorious reminder of how music can move you and the ability the run the entire gamut of emotions in one night is the mark of sheer genius.
But more than the music (which was astounding), more than the performance (which was breathtaking) was the tangible sense that this was a communal experience. We all shared in a mighty musical moment. When Pay Me My Money Down started the woman beside me, a perfect stranger, excitedly told me how her and her husband dance to it in their kitchen, then treated me to a demonstration. At seemingly every possible opportunity Bruce ventured down to the adoring crowds, high fiving, shaking hands and leaving five mile smiles as he went. This wasn’t a rock concert it was an experience and a privilege. An experience so powerful that when the giant screen caught the proud, teary face of the father whose young son got to sing Waitin’ on a Sunny Day with the man himself I couldn’t help but feel the same pang of awe and pride. For three hours and change we were all part of the E Street Band. When Bruce Springsteen shouts “We need you!” you bet your ass you answer the call.