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SPRINGSTEEN CAPTIVATES 3,000 IN SEMESTER'S LAST CONCERT


December 12, 1975, at C.W. Post College
article from the Post Pioneer (campus newspaper)

Odds are that no more than a handful of the 3,000 people who attended Friday night's concert at the Post Dome had ever seen Bruce
Springsteen in concert. Many had no doubt been caught up in recent publicity shenanigans, billing him as the "new rock sensation", or had glimpsed momentarily at news stories explaining the "double cover" phenomena on the front pages of TIME and NEWSWEEK magazine.

The audience, mostly young and anxious, did not come to hear a man named Springsteen, but rather to see and hear the rock star sensation that has been hailed by reviewers nationwide as the beginning of a new rock generation. One Long Island disc jockey said of Springsteen's appearance last week, "The concert of the year, by the performer of the Decade".

Once one separated oneself from the words of others, it became apparent that much of the fanfare was indeed true. In short, Springsteen gave the audience their monies worth. Even an hour long delay at the start of the show failed to reduce the volume or intensity of the applause that virtually captivated Springsteen's performance from the moment he was Introduced.

Considered by many to be the next in a line of rock star successes, Springsteen has the true distinction of being dubbed an "overnight success". In August, he appeared at the "Bottom Line", in a performance which was also broadcast live over WNEW-FM. His name was by no means well known at the time, and while his performance sold well, few realized that a few months later Springsteen would be playing to sold out audiences across the country.

As is expected of all rising young rock starts these days, Springsteen has a gimmick. It's not flashy sun glasses or bloody baby dolls, but rather it is his coarse yet vibrant attitude that sets him apart from the rest.

In the tradition of Lenny Bruce, Springsteen appeared on stage for his first number through a mist of colored barroom haze. The spotlight sheared the darkness from behind, as Springsteen pushed the michrophone to his mouth and caressed it with the tenderness of a football player on a blind date.

Dressed in a cut-off short sleeved work shirt, with baggy pants and a tattered wollen cap, Springsteen appeared to duplicate the unconcerned grace that his reputation has gathered.

Concluding his opening number, "Thunder Road", his voice seemed visibly strained. Some thought it was due to a long road trip, something which no doubt must have affected Springsteen somewhat, if only physically. But, to the active Springsteen listener, it was simply his straining style, a style which he plays to the hilt.

"Play one of your own", yelled an admirer, after Springsteen had ripped through a Bo Diddley number and "Katy's Back". As if to reciprocate, although it was obviously impossible for him to have heard the request through the incessant cheers and applause, Springsteen jumped to his feet and unleashed the popular "She's The One". With Clarence Clemmons on the saxophone and Maxwell Weinberg on the drums, the audience rose to its feet in unison. From that moment on, each time the spotlight shined on Clemmons, the audience responded with enthusiam. But then, it seemed like the audience never stopped responding with enthusiasm.

The pandamania was not restricted to the audience, either. Throughout the evening Springsteen popped around stage like a bunny rabbit seeking refuge from Elmer Fudd. Rarely sitting still, except during his first encore, a ballad entitled "Sandy. In fact, it appeared that the crowd considered every number after the first to be an encore, as they continued to yell for more and more.

As the concert began to lift to an obvious chreshendo Springsteen did the unexpected, the tabbooed, especially for a new and young performer. The experts say that new performers shoud hit the audience with some of their best known works at such a crucial point. Yet, beginning with the Animals "It's My Life", and Mitch Ryder's "Devil with a Blue Dress", Springsteen proved the experts wrong, as he kept the audience on the feet through a medley of old rock classics.

To tempt fate even farther, Springsteen later rolled out the bells as the familar melody of "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" began to pierce through the Dome. The crowd, figuring it was an Xmas joke, laughed and prepared themselves fro a quick change into another number. But the change never came. Springsteen and the E Street Band let loose with a dynamic interpretation of the classic that stirred everyone, including Springsteen himself as he danced frantically across the stage. As the shock wore off, the audience realized that Springsteen had the ability to make even the unexpected and mundane appear exciting and entertaining.

"Are Ya Loose?" yelled Springsteen as he was called back for yet another in a continuing string of encores. "Yes" screamed the audience, as rock's new sensation climaxed the evening with "Sha La La", and Gary U.S. Bonds' "A Quarter to Three".

"Definately the most dynamic concert I've ever been to," concluded one of the fans who stood on line since noon that afternoon. "You better believe it", agreed another, and another, and another, and..."


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12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “She’s the One”
“This is for, uh…the girls at Roy Rogers…”

12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “Kitty’s Back”
“Sorry about the delay tonight, being late and everything…but there was this big road block, you see, this big road block down the road, you know, yeah, there was like, there was fifteen police cars and the sirens going and everything and we came, we drove in, you know, and, uh, they wouldn’t let us in, we said “Listen, we gotta get through, you know,” they said “Nobody can get through, the whole area, the whole end of Long Island has been quarantined,” right, so like we were a little nervous, we said “Officer, you know, gee, what’s the matter?” you know, and he said “Nobody can go in or out because (?)…because Kitty’s back (crowd cheers)…”

12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “Sandy”
“[The band tests their instruments and Danny plays an accordion solo that sounds like a polka]…[long pause]…Yeah, now we could’ve had a terrible accident there (chuckles)…oh, are you ready, Band?...(?)…good…this song’s for everybody…all you folks from Asbury Park with love (crowd cheers)…”

12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town”
“It’s real cold down there now…are you ready, Band? (?)…it’s all cold down along the beach…wind’s whipping down the Boardwalk… hey, Band!...you guys know what time of year it is? what time? what? (Steve: “Christmastime”) what? (Steve: “It’s Christmastime”) oh, Christmastime!...you guys all, you guys all been good and practicing real hard? yeah? Clarence, you’ve been, you’ve been rehearsing real hard now so Santa’ll bring you a new saxophone, right – everybody out there been good or what? (some cheers) oh, that’s not many, not many, you guys are in trouble out here (chuckles)…”

12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “Detroit Medley”
“Now back in Detroit where Santa don’t go ‘cause he’s afraid of getting mugged (chuckles) are you ready, Band?...”

12.12.75 Greenvale, NY, intro to “Sha La La”
“(Crowd cheers) You guys are nuts, I don’t understand you guys (crowd cheers) don’t understand you…oh, oh…let’s do, uh…”

Compiled by Johanna Pirttijärvi


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Page last edited by d_vdlinden on Mar 20, 2012 6:09 am
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