Funny thing is, after a week in my house most of my CDs look like this.
Attention conservatives! Please boycott Bruce Springsteen's upcoming tour! Also liberals. And all you people who insist on shotgunning jumbo beers and shouting "Bruuuuuuuce" for no apparent reason. Basically, anybody who might be competing with me for a ticket, it would be a big help to me if you'd stay home.
Sad, no comments. "Wild Billy's
Circus Story" is the lithmus. Even
if you owned W.I.E.S.S., you could
easily skip over this song, if only
due to the tuba intro. I said tuba.
That would be a mistake. This is
easily one of Springsteens best. The bridge in the middle is haunting. I have listened to it
over and over, with chills each time. The song majestically manuevers the line between holy and hokum. Get a copy of this recording by any means necessary.
Okay, I arrive at this page guitar in hand, searching for "Wild Billy's Circus Story" in guitar tab (because, though I know the words by heart, I get lost sometimes with what he does in that haunting bridge).
But now I have to put the guitar down and honor you for honoring "WBCS." I also have to tell you a story.
I grew up in Philly, where Bruce was ear food. Friends and I had gone to concerts, but not Springsteen. Yet. Tickets went on sale for two nights at Vet Stadium. I was working. And people had camped out for days already.
Turns out, my mother, who was mistakenly calling him "Springstein" only a night before, found a ticket line all but 20 or so people had forgotten, in a bad neighborhood nearby. She ducked in on impulse, picked up two nights of 4 tickets each, and rewarded me with them when I got home.
"Now," she said, "you need to resell the second night's tickets for enough to cover the cost of the first." Enterprising, she is.
"No can do," said my three lucky friends who had already seen Springsteen once, "We're obliged to go both nights. This is a mission from God."
And we did.
Before the concert ont the first night, I asked if we should stop and get someone to buy us beer (yep... 17 at the time). "What, are you kidding," said my usually festive friends, "this is like going to church. No booze. You want to stay sharp for this."
And they were right.
Two nights, different each time. And the pinnacle of my concert-going career, which has since then been extensive. Absolute genius.
(I also know a guy who got tickets for one night, then hid in the bathroom overnight and snuck around the stadium for the next day, all to see Bruce twice.)
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