Happy Birthday, Les Paul…Have Some Springsteen…

Les Paul

In honor of the birthday of Les Paul, I want to share this singularly fucking incredible video of Bruce Springsteen with Tom Morello, performing “The Ghost of Tom Joad.” Not only is it an awesome song and an incredible performance, but there is some ungodly guitar work in this video, especially by Morello.

You’ll want to watch the whole thing, because OH MY GOD.

Then, a vid of the man himself (at 93!!!)…

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Tunnel of Love (Song of the Week, 4/18/2011)

Fat man sitting on a little stool
Takes the money from my hand while his eyes take a walk all over you
Hands me the ticket smiles and whispers good luck
Cuddle up angel cuddle up my little dove
We’ll ride down baby into this tunnel of love

I can feel the soft silk of your blouse
And them soft thrills in our little fun house
Then the lights go out and it’s just the three of us
You me and all that stuff were so scared of
Gotta ride down baby into this tunnel of love

There’s a crazy mirror showing us both in 5-d
I’m laughing at you you’re laughing at me
There’s a room of shadows that gets so dark brother
Its easy for two people to lose each other in this tunnel of love

It ought to be easy ought to be simple enough
Man meets woman and they fall in love
But the house is haunted and the ride gets rough
And you’ve got to learn to live with what you can’t rise above if you want to ride on down in through this tunnel of love…

Good Memories of 2009, Day 9: Springsteen

I already blogged about this (with multiple videos), but in April I saw the best concert I’ve ever seen, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at Phillips Arena. This wasn’t my first Springsteen show (and hopefully won’t be the last), but it was the best.

As Jon Stewart said a couple of years ago, “If you like joy, go see Bruce Springsteen.”

Springsteen: Tunnel Of Love Tour 1988

Here are a couple of videos from Springsteen’s 1988 Tunnel of Love tour, which was the first time I saw him. Tunnel of Love is notable for being his last studio album with the E Street Band (until 2002’s The Rising, a 16 year gap), and it was during this tour that Bruce (who was married to Julianne Phillips) fell for his backup singer, Patti Scialfa.

In the first video, Bruce and Patti look like they’re on the verge of tearing each other’s clothes off on the spot, and in the second, Bruce explores a theme that clearly was very much on his mind at the time: wanting something you’re not supposed to have.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

While we’re on the topic of Patti Scialfa, here’s a treat for those unfamiliar with her solo work:

Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band = Pure Unadulterated JOY

Sunday night, my ex, mother of my child, treated me to Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band at Phillips Arena. Pretty damn cool considering we’re still in the middle of a custody fight, but we still get along very well, overall…even though we’re still in the middle of a custody fight.

We were standing on the floor, about sixty feet in front of Bruce, and the show was phenomenal. I’ve seen him four times with the E Streeters, once with the Seeger Sessions Band a couple years ago (we actually drove up to Jersey for that one), and once solo acoustic on the Ghost of Tom Joad tour, and there is simply no one who puts on a better show.

Aside from being a volcano of energy and charisma, Bruce gives you a hell of a lot of rock and roll for your money. Back in the day, he would sometimes play over four hours a night (as he did the first time I saw him, on the Tunnel of Love tour), and Sunday he played for right around three hours. That’s with no intermission, too. The man clearly loves his job, and every minute is turbo-charged.

Also, no Springsteen show is ever the same. He changes the set list every night, and you never know what he’s going to play next. This tour, he’s taken this a step further: at one point in the show, he paced around the stage, reaching into the crowd and taking the signs people had made requesting songs, and he played those requests. Not only is the set-list ever-changing, it’s now dynamic. Even Bruce and the band don’t know everything they’re going to play in a show. Continue reading