Thursday, November 7, 2013

Bruce Springsteen - New York City Serenade (Rome 7/11/13)

My love affair with Springsteen's music really began in the mid-90s, as I dug deeper into his back catalog. I stumbled across some bootlegs from his early years, one of which contained an alternate version of "New York Serenade" that is just as good as the released version on The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle. I've never heard "New York Serenade" in concert; it's one of those rarities (like "The Price You Pay") that I pray will show up each time I see the boss, but never does.

Now I can say I've heard a live version, at least.

This is my favorite song from Springsteen's sophomore effort (which he released in late 1973... 40 years ago!). There are more popular tracks on the album, and others that have more complex lyrics, but "New York Serenade" tugs at my heart like none of those other songs. When the rest of the band fades out at the end and it's just David Sancious's piano and strings there are always tears in my eyes.

This video, shot in Italy this past July, is sublime. Watch the string section (man what a nice touch) and they way their faces light up during the pivotal moments of the song. The joy on their faces to be playing this classic song and to be on stage with Springsteen is a sight to behold.


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