Thursday, June 11, 2009

Festival Circuit Preview

After a few fantastic nights with the always enthusiastic Scandinavian crowds, Bruce and the boys return to the States for the Bonnaroo Festival in Manchester, TN. They will be headlining this Saturday night, given a 3.5 hr slot, sandwiched in between Wilco and Nine Inch Nails (two really awesome bands that I dig).

As we all know, Bonnaroo has evolved dramatically over the past few years. What started out as a 'jam band' festival now has hundreds of artists from all across the musical spectrum performing there, from indie rock to jazz to world music to hip-hop to folk/country to heavy metal etc.

Chances are most of these festival-goers aren't there for the Boss, and chances are many of them won't be familiar with his music. So this raises a few questions: Will Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band be able to pull it off? Will Max return? Will they change their setlists dramatically? Will there be sign requests (I won't be surprised if there aren't)? If they do succeed (and I think they will), this will definitely be a milestone in the band's career.

Next up is Glastonbury on Jun 27. This one sold out long before most of the acts were officially announced, and at that time, Bruce playing Glastonbury was just a rumor. But unlike Bonnaroo, expect to see more Springsteen fans there. The band's headlining performance will also be broadcast live on BBC, but it's a shame I won't be able to catch it, as I'll be attending Day 2 of Hard Rock Calling :( I can't afford to miss out on seeing Neil Young; if not, I'll probably never forgive myself!

And then of course, we have the last day of Hard Rock Calling, with Bruce headlining yet again -- and the day I've been waiting for. The 45,000 tickets sold out in an hour when they first went on sale back in February. So I'm pretty damn sure that at least 90% of the audience will be there for Bruce, and not Dave Matthews Band! I'll be flying off to London next weekend, but I'll still be providing updates of the festival setlists, so stay tuned...