He’s 63 years old, but Bruce Springsteen still somehow puts on three-hours-plus shows that are legendary for their energy and intensity. Of course, plenty of real working stiffs out there — the kind of people who populate Springsteen’s songs — put in overtime at real, get-your-hands-dirty jobs well into their 60s. But, for a millionaire musician who doesn’t have to do anything but collect gigantic royalty checks, Springsteen’s work ethic is impressive.
Earlier this year, Springsteen released his 17th studio album “Wrecking Ball” almost 40 years after his debut album “Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.” The “Wrecking Ball” tour comes to the Bryce Jordan Center on Nov. 1.
This summer, Springsteen and the E Street Band set what may be a personal record for show length — in Helsinki, Finland, of all places. The show was four hours and six minutes long, featuring 33 songs.
In September, the Boss celebrated his 63rd birthday on stage, where he was joined by his 87-year-old mother, on the final concert of a three-night run at MetLife Stadium, in East Rutherfurd, N.J. The show didn’t start until 10:30 p.m. because of storms and ended 33 songs later at 2 a.m.
Once upon a time, rock ’n’ roll was music made by and for teenagers. The music’s ability to annoy/infuriate/baffle one’s parents was a feature, not a bug. Well, now those early rockers are (mostly) grandparents, and its their turn to be annoyed by their kids/grandkids’ music.
There are some people, such as Springsteen, who just can’t stop rocking. Advanced age can’t stop them. A lifetime of hard living can’t stop them. They can even rock without making rock ’n’ roll, strictly speaking.
For some, it’s a judgment call. Rod Stewart, for example, still has a career, but he’s more likely to be singing American Songbook standards or Christmas carols than anything remotely rocking. B.B. King, on the other hand, is clearly a bluesman, but the blues’ relationship to rock ’n’ roll is pretty obvious by now. He’s 87 (at least).
As you can see, Springsteen still has a ways to go before he’s the Grand Old Man of Rock ...
‘Wrecking Ball’ tour song count
Whether you’re there for the hits, the deep album cuts from “Darkness on the Edge of Town” or simply “the new stuff,” part of the fun at a concert is wondering what you’ll get to hear. We wouldn’t want to take that away ... but you can probably get a good idea of what you’ll hear at next week’s show from what’s been played so far on this particular tour. The data for this comes from backstreets.com, one of the top Springsteen fan sites. As the tour continues, the percentages may, of course, change.
Songs played at 100 percent of “Wrecking Ball” tour stops (Europe and North America): “Born To Run,” “Dancing in the Dark,” “My City of Ruins,” “Waitin’ On a Sunny Day,” “We Take Care of Our Own” and “Wrecking Ball.”