It was May 24, 1978 when Springsteen set off on an epic tour

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Bruce Springsteen has been touring for over 50 years. It has occurred in almost every state here in the United States and many countries in Europe, Africa and Asia, and far and wide in Australia and New Zealand.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at the Palace of Auburn Hills

THE HOUSE LIGHTS UP! Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at the Palace of Auburn Hills/Bill Doyle photo

Most of the fans who attended his concerts think that the concert they attended was the best concert he ever gave. You can understand what they’re talking about if you’ve ever been to one of Bruce’s shows.

Bruce Springsteen holds a guitar on stage

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Bruce Springsteen took some time off after his Born to Run tour. He was looking forward to getting out there and hitting the road with the release of his new album Darkness on the Edge of Town. Reviews for this album would be mixed compared to the adulation Born to Run received here in the United States and around the world.

Bruce Springsteen in New Jersey, by Danny Clinch

Bruce Springsteen in New Jersey, by Danny Clinch

Following what he thought was a lukewarm response Bruce staged a 118 date tour with all dates played here in the US, due to illness and weather the tour would complete a total of 115 dates.

Born in the USA by Bruce Springsteen turns 30

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It was during this tour that Bruce slowly slipped through a 25-26 song list that was over two hours long and the shows were filled with such intensity, showmanship and great music that Bruce historians say this tour may have been Bruce’s best.

Bruce Springsteen’s second The River concert at MetLife Stadium

The tour kicked off in Buffalo at Shea’s Performing Arts Center on May 24, 19.78. I was able to see the show on November 29, 1978 in St. Paul, Minnesota at the St. Paul Civic Center which was demolished in the late 1990s.

Photo courtesy of Lawrence Kirsch

Photo courtesy of Lawrence Kirsch

I was finishing my brilliant career at the University of Minnesota. I got tickets straight away when it was announced and scored a few backstage assists through my Jersey connections.

The show was amazing! I had seen Bruce a few times before but couldn’t believe the energy, the band cohesion and the passion and commitment that Bruce delivered on every song. It was a great show. We went crazy for Rosalita and I thought the building would collapse when the band did Born to Run

Bruce Springsteen

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.After a killer show like that, I thought there would be a big party after the show, I couldn’t wait to get back on stage. Well imagine my surprise when behind the scenes there was no booze, no frills, no music, just a work crew packing up and family and friends who were overpowered and exhausted by the rock and roll prisoner experience.

Tony Awards 2018 – Show

Getty Images for the Tony Awards Pro

On reflection, that made sense. Bruce was focused on one thing and that was that show that night. It’s always been his mantra, leave everything on stage, rest, recharge and start all over again the next night.

I am a lucky guy to have witnessed such a spectacle; it’s the one I will never forget.

The above post reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 weekend host Big Joe Henry. All opinions expressed are those of Big Joe.

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