2003-08-30, Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ

The Rising Tour
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Notes

Appr. 2 hours, 50 minutes.

"Janey Don't You Lose Heart" and "Raise Your Hand" are tour premieres.

Emmylou Harris guests on "Across the Border". The band Marah guest on "Raise Your Hand".

"Worlds Apart" is dropped for the second time on the tour.

"Because the Night", "Roll of the Dice" and "Pretty Flamingo" are all played for the second time on the tour.

"Thunder Road" is dedicated to Springsteen fan Jim Berger who died in the WTC.

Eyewitness accounts

Were you there? Write about it!
1561
John wrote: What can one say? The first show I've seen on the Rising tour(I'm getting old). Pretty Flamingo was a pleasant surprise; Bruce and the Band were as great as ever-they'll be rockin' until they are 100. Badlands was released in '78, BTR '75, Rosie 1973 and they are played with the fever and freshness of any new release. Much newer recordings have already been relegated to the oldie/nostalgia scrapheap; does anyone consider Rosalita, BTR, 10th ave Freezout etc oldies? Clearly, Bruce and the E-Street band continue to demonstrate themselves to be the greatest rock band of all time bar none. Downside- Acoustics at Giants Stadium could never match an arena. Bruce was a speck from section 115; thank goodness for the large screen. Still, as long as they are performing- I'll keep showing up happy to see that old friends are doing quite well indeed.

Will Eremin wrote: Going into last night's show, I had know idea what would happen. I thought it might have been a standard set since they were filming, but I was wrong. Way wrong. When Bruce came out with the Butterscotch Telecaster, I new it was something special. They went right in to Janey Don't You Lose Heart. Followed by that was outstanding performences of The Rising and Lonesome Day. Lonesome Day went right into Candy's Room. That was the second time I heard it on the tour and it sounded better then in Duluth, GA on 2/28. I had never heard Trapped before but I immediatly liked it. Bruce gave another beautiful performence of Empty Sky and Waitin On A Sunny Day was a blast. Right before the next song he said,"Are you feeling lucky?" At first I thought it would be Lucky Town but when the band started it was an ultimate rarity, Roll of the Dice. That's one of my favorite songs from Human Touch and it was great to hear. Before I could tell my Mother what song that was, Roy started the piano solo for Because The Night and I knew this would be an amazing night. Because The Night was great. I'm glad he did that instead of Worlds Apart leading into Badlands. It kept the momentum going. During Badlands the ground was shaking. Little Steven's solo was great. The momentum kept going when they blasted into Out In The Street. The oh oh oh oh's from the croud were almost louder then the ban itself. At least from where I was sitting in Sect.332. When Mary's Place started Bruce was singing a song about Saturday night. Lots of people went to the bathroom during that song. I don't why. They missed the band intro's. After a 20 minute Mary's Place, Bruce introduced Emmylou Harris. She joined the band for a beautiful version of Across The Boarder. I never thought I would hear any song from The Ghost of Tom Joad album except Youngstown. It sounded great. That was definently one of my favorites for the night. They next did Into The Fire which was also a great performence of the song. Although I didn't get to hear my favorite song, No Surrender, I got to hear my second favorite, Thunder Road. Bruce dedicated it to a man named Jim Berger who died on 9/11. It was amazing. My Mom cried because that was her favorite song. I love that song and I was soglad to hear it. For the first encore, Bruce dedicated This Hard Land to his friend Bobby Muller in the audience. I was so pleased to thear This Hard Land again. He did it in Georgia and I thought I'd never hear it live again. I was so glad that I did. Bruce then introduced a Philadelphia band named Marah and they did a great version if Raise Your Hand. After that they went right into Glory Days. I'd take that over Ramrod any day. After Glory Days, they went right into Born To Run. That song never gets old. It was great. After a long ending to BTR, 7 Nights To Rock was played. I immediatly became a fan of that great song. Bruce went to the piano for the first part of My City of Ruins and then the 2nd part was the full band version. It was beautiful.

John Wagner wrote: Amazing show last night! Maybe the best of the Jersey shows...so far. Made me want to Raise My Hands. It was great to hear songs like Janey and Because the Night. Nice to see Bruce reaching a little deeper into the catalogue. I must say I really did miss Worlds Apart...no, not really. I don't think anyone did. It looked like Bruce wanted to play something between Out in the Street and Mary's Place, but the Band didn't seem to notice. The only song that I heard during soundcheck that they didn't play was Lucky Town, so maybe that was it. Hopefully, he'll play it tonight. Pretty Flamingo was a nice treat, but it felt kind of like we were getting Philly's sloppy seconds. Thanks to the girl with the Crush on You sign...I hope Bruce saw that and will play it tonight. I want to thank Bruce and the Band for a great show...and a special thanks to that guy who felt Born to Run needed its own interpretive dance!

Kevin McDevitt wrote: There are no words. Okay, maybe three: OHH MY GOD! This was unexpected, coming off Thursday's setlist, it was incredible, and unbelievable (ok...six words :).

Everything was great from the start. The band came out to "Another Saturday NIght" (Sam Cooke); Bruce actually had to wait for Clarence, who was hamming it up for the backstage camera with a monster-sized stogie. I was a-hoping and a-praying that we would get something, anything besides "The Rising" as an opener...and I could tell by the way he took a few extra seconds to start..."Janey Don't You Lose Heart"...that's a personal fav, he looked like he enjoyed playing it, and he just took us wherever he wanted to go from there. "The Rising": is it just me, or has the performance of that song come a lonnnnnng way since last summer? The real fun began after L'Day..."Candy's Room" into "Trapped". What can I say? After Empty Sky (1st potty break :), a great "Waiting on a Sunny Day" (BTW: The weather was perfect; cloudy, but cool and breezy and NO rain). Then he really started pulling them out of the hat: "Roll of the Dice!!!!" I thought I was in Vegas! Bruce and Steve did a great "just another roll..." back-and-forth at the end. Then an incredible 3-Pack: "Because the Night (man, that song let's the whole band show off) into "Badlands" into "Out in the Street". It felt damn close to the RT 5-Pack.

Other Notes: "Mary's Place" was fun, but the introductions were streamlined. Emmylou Harris was brought on stage to duet on "Across the Border" (I think that may have gotten a little lost in translation unless you were sitting/standing up close). "Thunder Road" was dedicated to the memory of Jim Berger; if memory serves, a big fan lost in the WTC.

MIA: The Fuse (thank God), Worlds Apart, and the River/Darkness staples: Ties, Prove It...etc.

First Encore: "This Hard Land". It was awesome, and another personal fav. And the surprises kept coming with "Raise Your Hand" (members of the band Marah helped out, and had a great time). "Glory Days' preceded "Born to Run", and the first encore finshed with "7 Nights...". Whew. Bruce plugged Al Franken's new book during his PSA before LOHAD. The final surprise on this night of surprises was a beautiful "Prety Flamingo" sandwiched between LOHAD and Rosie.

What can you say about this setlist. From where I was sitting, the crowd REALLY responded. There was a LOT of energy on stage (is he really almost 54? There's hope for us all!) , and the crowd gave as they got. After Thursday's show, so one was expecting this. Was there a better show on this tour? I haven't been to enough to judge, but, damn...I almost don't want to go back tonight for fear of disappoinment...I said ALMOST :). If anyone has a problem with this show, you should maybe stop buying tickets and wait for Celine to come to AC....

"Rider in the Black Night" wrote: At this point, my favorite parts of any show are the wild card songs and last night had plenty of them.

The camera crew completely botched the opener, choosing to film the Band in the tunnel, such that those of us not on the field couldn t even tell who was coming on stage and when. I would soon come to realize, they had assumedly been hitting the bong hard with the sound crew .

As one of the few people who have deeply appreciated Janey for almost twenty years, it was a real pleasant surprise to hear him open the show with it, rather than something far more vanilla like Promised or Rising. Too bad the sound started off so bad that I thought it was The Ties that Bind ! Hey Sound Crew, ever heard of a SOUND CHECK?!!!!

Unfortunately, they didn t get the sound right for at least 3 songs after that, for that matter. I couldn t hear Dan s keyboards until Badlands, finally. And even then things didn t sound right until halfway through the show.

That infamous high-hat cymbal beginning to Candy s Room sends chills up your spine, especially when you re a true fan watching it live -- and with the low clouds against an otherwise cool clear night sky Bruce turned it into a haunting introduction the eerie guitar riff to Trapped INCREDIBLE.

A really funny moment came when Bruce played to the crowd with Sunny Day he started with Are there any LITTLE STEVEN FANS OUT THERE? to which the crowd (at least 75% Soprano fans? Am I the only true Miami Steve lover?) roared its approval. GOOD THING, because Bruce had WAY too much speed during his stage-slide almost broke his leg trying to keep from falling off the stage! (Which led me to conclude, if they had to go stitch Bruce up, I m ABSOLUTELY sure Steve & Nils could carry the show for at least a few songs. Any true fans out there ever heard Bruce and Steve sing Native American on Steve s second album yes, Bruce CAN sing reggae!! but I m way on a tangent .)

Then, after almost blowing out his knee, Bruce very appropriately yells WHO S
FEELING LUCKY?!?! to which I rolled my eyes [The early nineties stuff without the band (the Dark Years as I call them) does nothing for me at all] as they ripped into Roll of the Dice I knew another wild card had been spent, and unwisely. BUT THEN that all too familiarly haunting piano intro .. my decades long wait was finally over BECAUSE THE NIGHT LIVE I was on a cloud. I was thrilled at the rareties I was getting out of this show .

Across the Border , with Emmylou Harris, another Dark Years song, got me nowhere AT FIRST BUT the whole Band gradually kicked in. I ve gotta hand to you, Boss by the end this otherwise lame-o song had this Frankie -type depth to it that was especially satisfying to an E-Street-Band lover on a gorgeous summer night.

For a fan like me, it was intense to hear This Hard Land with the crowd so still and quiet so I could really appreciate every note, especially Dan s accordion. And by now with the sound crew finally getting things right, the instrumentation was just awesome.

I ll skip the vanilla stuff he did, but that first little riff off Raise Your Hand sent me springing out of my seat finally! After going to concerts since 1988, I got to hear this LIVE album classic!!! But who are those Bon-Jovi wannabe s from Philly? We didn t hear the answer, but my wife swore they were contest winners! Lucky bastards!!! (see show notes for the real answer).

Then, when I thought all my wild cards had been dealt and played the first few notes of . What is that .?..... and then Bruce starts quietly crooning Pretty Flamingo . Wow that was great. Another concert classic I ve just been too young to ever hear live myself!

And then finally, after a 15-year wait for me, I got my fill of Rosie !!! nice! Too bad the crowd was a little complacent after hearing it at past recent shows they were more psyched of for Dancing to close but I ve just never felt that song s better elements live in concert It s my humble opinion that some songs (BITUSA, Ties That Bind) are just better left in the studio.

Incredible night for the aficionados --- bring on the Shea Stadium shows!!!!!

Tom Cantillon wrote: Janey Don't Lose Heart was a great treat, followed by powerful performances of Candy's Room and Trapped. Candy's Room sizzled! A rollicking Roll of the Dice went into a blistering version of Because the Night. If only he'd done She's the One after Badlands, that trio would have been one of the best of the tour, no doubt.

Emmylou Harris guested on one of my favorites from Ghost, Across the Border--beautiful version. The trio of Across the Border, Into the Fire and Thunder Road was beautifully done. Dreams, Love, Loss, the will to carry on, the belief in that "magic in the night" made those three work well together.

This Hard Land was equally great, but Raise Your Hand was a blast. Great performance that took the show to a whole new level. Bruce needs to include that one more often--hope it ends up on the dvd. Born to Run and 7 Nights were hard rocking.

7 Nights was Bruce meets James Brown, meets Jerry Lee Lewis, meets the Stray Cats--out of control--a rocking moment that was just a pleasure to witness and sing along to.

Then, to add Pretty Flamingo, right before Rosie--a perfect moment, mixing heartfelt yearning and young lust. Simply amazing and better end up on the dvd, not the cutting room floor. One of the best shows, not only of this tour, but of any tour I've seen. You just had to be there--sorry if you weren't.

JoshO wrote: Friday - Chasing Girls Down on the Boardwalk
Baba and I took Calhoun to the Lexington Diner for breakfast that morning, where we talked of the show and Baba called me "Jake". There's not even a Jake in our family.

After digesting a creation called "Disco Fries" Calhoun and I headed to downtown Passaic to wait for our traveling companion, the long-lost Eleanor "Not-Work" Parker. Ms. Parker comes courtesy of the ever-memorable National Young Leaders Conference from way back in 1997. Following a summer of traded emails, she agreed to come along on our pilgrimage. And furthermore, she agreed to sit politely and deal with our shenanigans.

After scouring for bargains in the Passaic shops such as the Bargain Man, we stumbled upon quite a bargain - a green and yellow O hat. In the midst of pulling that trigger on that must-have, the Calhoun's cellular telephone apparatus rang to alert the arrival of Eleanor. Following a tear-full reunion, we hopped in the car for the ride to the Asbury Park, long-time stomping grounds of Bruce and his band. In the ecstatic glow of getting the tickets in April, we decided to voyage down to the source of Bruce's muse - the Jersey Shore.

Although many reported to us that Asbury Park had fallen into disrepair, we found it to be clean, attractive and almost completely empty. As we walked through the Convention Hall (which definitely could a coat of paint or three) we saw a sign for HAPPY HOUR. Well, that's all we really needed. We sat near a tiki bar on the covered porch, 12 feet from the water, listening to the music of a two-person acoustic guitar band. They obliged with our requests for "Rhiannon" by Fleetwood Mac and some Grateful Dead. We even did the handclaps for "Not Fade Away". And by "we" I mean "I".

On a trip to find salt-water taffy, we stumbled upon the Cadillac Ranch, a new bar that had only been open for two weeks. Covered with lots of Bruce memorabilia and Jim Beam mirror that I desperately wanted, we found out a lot from a helpful barmaid. Turns out that five investors from Chicago have bought up the entire boardwalk and have plans to reestablish Asbury Park as a hot spot on the Shore. We applauded these investors' efforts and silently prayed for Bruce to walk through the doors at any moment.

Alas, he did not. So we ventured for dinner.

Following a supreme meal of pizza, Fettucini Alfredo (never met that Alfredo, but he makes a damn good pasta) and even better times, we journeyed back to the city of Clifton for a night's rest. The capper to the weekend was only hours away.

Saturday - From the Coastline to the City All the Little Pretties Raise Their Hands
College football's opening weekend coincided with The Boss festivities, so we watched College Gameday Saturday morning before spending a few hours in the pool, listening to some, you guessed it, Springsteen albums. We threw around more songs we wanted to hear. I abandoned my plan for the entire "The Wild and Innocent" album, but merely settled for a version of "Raise Your Hand". And then we spent hours "diving" into the pool for thrown rubber duckies.

Calhoun and I attend universities not blessed with football powerhouses, so our allegiances to football teams are non-matriculation related. Eleanor, however, attended University of Alabama where "Football is religion". She regaled us with stories of people dressing up in fancy clothes for games, as if they were going to church. Sounds like fun. That's quite a switch from my school, where people stumble into a football game by making a wrong turn for Sutter's Mill bar.

After being entertained by more stories from Baba over Chinese food, the first car containing Calhoun, Eleanor and I left for the stadium. Yep, still didn't take long. We couldn't park at 4D as we did before, so we settled for 13D or something. More toasts, more naked burgers (this time without cheese), more good times. When people would ask where we were from, we'd downplay our upstate heritage, but then mention with glee "BUT SHE CAME ALL THE WAY FROM ALABAMA!" There never ceased to get great responses from the crowd.

While sitting having a deep philosophical conversation (not likely), our attention turned to the foliage across the road from the parking lot. Calhoun called it Goldenrod, so we took that at face value. While waiting in line to use the "Port-A-John", Eleanor and I noticed a steady stream of people running across the road to relieve themselves in the so-called Goldenrod. This act was gleefully christened Goldenrod, and became a highlight of the weekend.

Let it be said that we were skeptical of the diagnosis of Goldenrod.

What we saw was not Goldenrod. All that aside, calling it Goldenrod stuck. And continues to.

Upon settling in the wrong seats in the wrong section, we took a sprint to the other side of the stadium to meet up with my mom, aunt and uncle for this show. And this show BLEW Thursday out of the friggin' water. The setlist featured some real gems, such as the hot opener of "Janey, Don't You Lose Heart". The first of many "Oh Shit!"s occurred as we heard the high hat opening to "Candy's Room" (then my aunt told me to calm down). While we were still digesting that, Bruce ventured into the rare "Trapped" and "Roll of the Dice". This was not a casual fan's concert. The second "Oh Shit" came as we heard Roy Bittan playing the opening lines to "Because the Night". They kicked it up one more notch, fulfilling our wish for "Spirit in the Night" followed by the typical "Badlands" into "Out in the Street".

My mom just about melted when Bruce introduced Emmylou Harris for a version of "Across the Border". To close it out, Bruce rocked the house with "Thunder Road". For the first encore, he played "This Hard Land" (amazing) and then brought out the band Marah for my personal highlight of "Raise Your Hand". It's got to be a thrill for the dudes from Marah to be brought out at a sold-out Giants Stadium show and then share a mic with The Boss. Barely giving us a rest, they went right into "Glory Days" and all 60,000 people were all dancing, I swear. Right into the obvious "Born to Run" and then another favorite of "Seven Nights to Rock"

The second encore was more typical, with only a rendition of "Pretty Flamingoes" to spice it up. This was the first time the band had played it since 1978. The normal "Rosalita" followed by "Dancing in the Dark" to close out what was a supreme A+ show.

Both Calhoun and Eleanor were departing after the show, so farewells were shared and then they were both gone like a spirit in the night.

We christened this one of the best weekend of all time. Nothing much more can be said about it. Thank you for reading.

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