Skip to comments.Workingman's anthems of Boss cloaked in irony (SPRINGSTEEN BOMBS OUT IN CHICAGO)
Posted on 06/15/2006 3:37:09 AM PDT by Chi-townChief
Pete Seeger sings songs of peace, hope and the working class. Bruce Springsteen's idea to reinterpret the Seeger songbook with broad strokes of street jazz and gospel is a noble thought. Unfortunately, Springsteen's Tuesday night "Seeger Sessions" concert was outsourced to the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park.
Everything that was so right about the music was so wrong for the venue.
Springsteen and his raucous 17-piece band failed to even fill the pavilion. Roughly 5,500 fans showed up, and the $92 ticket price knocked out the working-class audience that Springsteen and Seeger have championed. This is First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre, as in cha-ching. A Corona beer was $10. "Seeger Session" programs were $20. I know many fans who would have taken a chance on the show had tickets been $50 or less. So who's left? People who may not share Seeger and Springsteen's political beliefs.
How do I know this? Springsteen's first encore was an evocative version of "Bring Them Home (If You Love Your Uncle Sam)," which Seeger wrote in 1966 as an anti-Vietnam War song. Back then, thousands of people sang with Seeger on the chorus: "Bring 'em home, bring 'em home, but I got a right to sing this song. ..."
But after Tuesday's rendition, there was a smattering of applause to a message that is as much about freedom of expression as it is against war. The starchy atmosphere was not lost on the Boss, who earlier in the concert remarked, "Tinley Park. I don't know where the hell that is -- some big black box outside of Chicago?"
So Springsteen tried his best, especially in the second portion of the 2-1/2-hour show. (In what is becoming a Springsteen tradition, he kicked off the concert almost an hour after the advertised 7:30 p.m. start.) He rearranged "Ramrod" into a Tex-Mex-meets-ska roadhouse number with tuba solos, and "You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)" continues to embrace the zydeco seasonings Springsteen deployed at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
New Orleans is still much on Springsteen's mind. He wasn't as vocal about President Bush as he was in New Orleans, explaining that he doesn't "like to kick a man when he's down." But Springsteen's hard-rockin' reworking of Blind Alfred Reed's "How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live" continues to be an emotional cornerstone of the set.
Springsteen added his own post-Katrina lyrics to the 1929 blues song that reflected on the Great Depression. On Tuesday, he sang of "bodies floatin' on Canal and the levees gone to hell" with raw conviction and empathy. Moments earlier, Springsteen shared vocals with Marc Anthony Thompson (Chocolate Genius) as they recast "Long Black Veil" through pure country gospel.
The stage was basked in shades of red, and I found the three chandeliers above the band very ironic. Here's a news flash: There are places in Chicago like the Auditorium Theatre and Orchestra Hall that have storied chandeliers, where Seeger and the Weavers actually performed, and are more accessible for older folk music fans than a shed among the little boxes that Seeger himself sang about in 1963's ode to suburbia "Little Boxes (Ticky Tacky)."
gag me with a tuba...
And how about that snotty last paragraph from Hoekstra? I guess he thinks we should all be ghetto-dwellers. I saw Springsteen in '77 at the Auditorium when he really was the Boss, not the politically correct phony that he is now; great show show but terrible acoustics.
That kind of coin won't cover his bands bar tab.
The author is right about one thing. He should have played the Auditorium or even the Ampitheatre. He might have been able to make it look like he still had a following.
I've loathed Springsteens music since 1977 and quite proudly I might add.
Working mans hero my ass.
He's a phony.
I actually liked this guy quite a bit up until the mid-80s; I think the Dancing in the Dark video was the last straw. But listening again now, most of his vocals are so overwrought he sounds like he singing while he's sitting on the toilet, constipated.
Springsteen added his own post-Katrina lyrics to the 1929 blues song that reflected on the Great Depression.
Blind Alfred Reed was not a blues singer, the song was not blues, and it's tough to reflect on the "Great Depression" a month after the Wall Street crash.
the $92 ticket price knocked out the working-class audience that Springsteen and Seeger have championed.
"Bruuuuce" is one of the biggest phonies around. Typical of all "liberals", smug, arrogant, condescending, preachy, self-righteous. Plus he's stupid and doesn't know it.
5,500 tickets sold out of 30,000 seats, not very good "Bruuuce".
Front row seats for Jimi Hendrix' Band of Gypsies at the Fillmore East, New Years Eve 1969 - 8 dollars.
And how about that snotty last paragraph from Hoekstra? I guess he thinks we should all be ghetto-dwellers. I saw Springsteen in '77 at the Auditorium when he really was the Boss, not the politically correct phony that he is now; great show show but terrible acoustics.Cleveland Agora, August 9, 1978 (I was quite illegal...LOL). Perhaps one of the best rock and roll shows ever, anywhere.
Unfortunately, at some point in the mid 80's, Bruce came down with SDS (S don't stink) Syndrome, the same thing that afflicted the Beatles (about the time of Sergeant Pepper), Prince, REM, and numerous other artists.
It's still tough to beat songs like "Thunder Road", "Jungleland", "Born to Run", "Asbury Park Fourth of July", "Rosalita", and "Sherry Darling".
Ironically, when I was a big Springsteen fan and becoming a conservative, my mom was a big Pete Seeger fan. Even moreso, he criticized Reagan for using "Born In The USA", but it was the national mood of optimism Reagan helped rekindle that made that album so huge.
Working mans hero my ass.
He's a phony.
Couldn't happen to a nicer jerk! Back when I used to like the 'Boss' I really liked him...when he took that major left turn and then went after Patti, I said WTF? Bye Brucie...LOL
Never got it on this Jersey Jerk, Springsteen. Never watch him in any format and his music sounds to me as little more than an adverising jingle. He is a phony, just another hypocrite like those other Jersey Jerks, the 9/11 Jersey Girls, so stupid as to support the D-Rats who actually facilitated the 9/11 murder of their spouses, and will do so again if given an opportunity. When did people become so dumb and vacuous???
Pop Culture, a disease of choice, it's beyond belief.
Still that's pretty pathetic for 'the boss'.
Never could stand his music.
I was never much of a fan, either. The music doesn't do much for me and the lead-footed dancing is the worst.
The Boss is going down along with the Dixie Clucks. You think they might get the picture after a while?
And who would pay $92 to hear him? Geez....
Wanna Be NJ Billy Joel Couldn't Make It As A Solo Act Had To Get A Band Workin' Man's Family Values.
Maybe getting the Dixie Chicks to open for him would help.
- federal taxes
- state taxes
- municipal/township tax
- cost of venue
-cost of advertising
- managers fee
- agents fee
- band's fee
- equipment rental
yeah he cleared about $50,000.00, not bad for a nights work...being a "working man" and all.
see my post 23
- federal taxes
- state taxes
- municipal/township tax
We were talking gross figures, but that would be poetic. If it were true, however, it would blow up the Lib complaints about tax cuts being for the rich...
Maybe the Boss can team with the Dixie Chicks and play the indian casino circuit. If they add in Bin Jovi, they might even fill most of the 1500 seats.
I can't think of a single Springsteen tune that doesn't cause my radio to suddenly turn off or change channels.
That's all you need to know about liberals.
Bananarama is more enlightening.
That's odd. His tunes have that exact effect on my radio.
Nobody's gonna beat Ry Cooder's version of "Blind Alfred Reed's "How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live".
Carlton Theater, Red Bank, N.J. 1975. 10th Ave. Freeze Out, Night and the Fever were life changing experiences.
That was when Bruce and the band were just about to launch. They were optimistic in looking toward the future and the music reflected it. Contract dispute with DellaPelle bittered Bruce forever. From Darkness it has been a steady downhill slide. Pity.
"Working-class man" letting the little guy know what he really thinks of him.
May Brucie Boy have many more empty seats in his future.
I met Seeger in 1962 in Harvard SQ. a pal of mine was a big folk music fan, gifted musician, and future drug victim. he, Seeger, seemed kind of smarmy and self righteous.
You got that straight; in the "Hail Hail Rock and Roll" movie, Keith Richard came across as much more articulate than Springsteen so what does that tell you?
Is he aware of Seeger's support for the Nazis from '39-'41?
Oops, by "victim", maybe I should assume that he's no longer around.
Maybe he could do "The View".
Springsteen was the Boss until my female roommate decided he had a "cute ass". I swore off Bruce after that. He became another Michael Bolton.
Let's see, less then half of the place sells and the people who do show up, you insult. Good plan!
These thirty-five years, bought to heavily in to the '60's. The only person that I ever met that aced the SATs, 1964.
"How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live at 92 bucks a pop?
I was going to suggest that maybe he could open for the Dixie Chicks with their new, realigned schedule.
Yep. *Platinum* anger and *Sold-Out* rebelliousness can only be maintained for so long before *SOS* reality sets in.. looks like he's going to have to go for the *retired* man blues if he wants to sell tickets. Ever heard "Born in the USA" on accordion?
"Tramps like us, Baby, we were born to run."
The unions picketed Springsteen's Milwaukee show because he performed in a non-union hall.
Gotta love irony, it can be so ironic.