2003-07-21, Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ

The Rising Tour
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Appr. 3 hours, 10 minutes.

E Street alumni Vini "Mad Dog" Lopez plays the drums on "Spirit in the Night".

Eyewitness accounts

Were you there? Write about it!
"Diamond Jackie's Sister" wrote: Like Bruce sings in Mary's Place, let it rain, let it rain, let it rain! If last night's show was any indication of what happens when it pours, let it rain! And as if on que, the skies opened up during Mary's Place. No one seemed to care. It actually made it more fun and Bruce seemed to feed off that extra energy from the crowd.

As for Bruce's energy, he just simply amazes me - he and the band keep getting better, night after night after night. As do the song selections - Night, For You, Spirit (nice to see Mad Dog), Trapped, Where the Bands Are, and of course an absolutely ear splitting, stadium rocking Rosie.

If you don't have tix, get them. The big stadium doesn't take away from the Bruce experience. He's at his best (don't we say that each time around?!) and shouldn't be missed.

Tom Cantillon wrote: Another rainy night, but well worth it with such a diverse set list. Jackson Cage, Prove it all Night and Trapped were terrific songs to get the crowd going. Along the way, some oldies, For You and Spirit in the Night--both were nailed beautifully. Cadillac Ranch went into rockabilly-country overdrive with Soozie joing in the jam--awesome. And the rain, waiting until Mary's Place, well, a perfect moment for some of that rock 'n' roll gospel to come down and liberate us all. Great show, but my favorite, so far, night #3. And despite how I've felt before, Dancing in the Dark is starting to grow on me.

Kyle Pucciarello wrote: Getting to Giants Stadium at 2:15, I was in for one surprise already - parking was free because I got there before the lot actually opened. This was going to be a great night!

I had General Admission for the show and wound up about three rows back in the sea of people. When the band took the stage, sheer amazement ran through my body - there I was fifteen feet away from my idols. It was going to be a night to remember.

"The Rising" and "Lonesome Day" opened up the show, not "Who'll Stop the Rain," which many thought would. In fact, the CCR classic stayed tucked away all night. But the surprise of "Jackson Cage" surely made up for it.

After great versions of "Night" and "Prove it all Night," one of the songs I've always wanted to hear was finally played, "Trapped." The vocals on the song were incredible, as the band harmonized extremely well, sending those words through my body like nothing else.

Again "You're Missing" was nowhere to be found, but was once again made up for with the surprise "For You" making its first appearance in some time. "The Promised Land" followed , with the typical trio of "World's Apart," "Badlands," and "Out in the Street" following the action.

"Mary's Place" was next, with Bruce accentuating the "Let in rain" chorus. At this point it was really coming down out there, and Bruce gave us a song to "keep us moving."

"Cadillac Ranch" rocked as usual, followed by the always great and inspired "Into the Fire." Bruce's vocals on the final verse of the song bring it full circle and exude the emotion that the speaker of the song is trying to convey.

After "No Surrender" closed the main set, the band came back out for the encores. However, it seemed that Max had changed a little during the break. Well, there was a reason for that, it wasn't Max at all! It was Vini "Mad Dog" Lopez, of the original E Street Band, coming out to lend his hand on the classic "Spirit in the Night." During one part where Bruce let the crowd start the next verse, Vini's face lit up like it was the most amazing thing he had ever seen. Imagine, a song you helped out on thirty years ago now being sung by 55,000 faithful. It was truly a moment that would give goosebumps to anyone.

But it was also around this point that it became obvious to me how difficult GA was. After standing for nearly six hours at this point, the body was beginning to seriously fatigue. Not only this but the downpouring of rain didn't help either. However, it loosened up Bruce, and able-bodied or not, it was destined to continue to be a great night.

The incredibly-rare "Where the Bands Are" popped up next, followed by a solid "Bobby Jean."

The great duo of "Ramrod" and "Born to Run" followed. During "Ramrod" I threw dice on stage, but before any band member could get to them, a cameraman took them away to the sound of some boos from the crowd (a small victory). But these songs were even more fun from this close. Watching the entire stadium's hands raised during the middle of "Born to Run" was something I'll never forget.

The second encore was finally shook up a little, with "Hungry Heart" played after yet another great performance of "Rosalita." "Dancing in the Dark" once again closed the show, but it was enough.

Twenty-seven songs and an incredibly energetic performance, not to mention being 15 feet from my idol, well, it was one of the greatest nights I can recall. But believe me, the two day break until the next show was going to be very necessary.


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