Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Let's Make Like Tomatoes and Catch Up (Ow!)
Once again, I was planning to write this a while ago. That's me and Gary and Jimmy October 14 outside the ScotiaBank Place in Kanata, Ottawa,about two hours west-ish of Montreal. We met when I was still in LA, and I answered an ad for people to travel together to see Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at one of his only two Canada appearances. (I know, sounds dorky, but it wasn't really.)
Though I'm sure Gary did sort of expect more than two people to respond to the ad. But there we were: a writer from Los Angeles, a Quebecois Chrysler auto parts guy (Bruce would be proud), and an Asian-Canadian computer guy dude, sitting in a Dunkin' Donuts at the Berri-UQAM Station, strategizing about how best to nab seats in "the pit." Like teenagers.
All over Ottawa, other grown-ups were having the same strategy sessions, self-imagined swashbucklers with enough money for tickets and t-shirts. And a serious mortage. And more than one car. Rock and roll grown-ups.
This was gonna be a column about the show, about how in a world where actual product barely exists, where walls and walls and walls full of albums have been replaced by less than a microchip, and where there are no record stores anymore, a middle-aged guy swinging a Fender Esquire guitar can rejuvenate and reinvigorate and reinvent. I've written about Springsteen so many times in so many places that there isn't much I can add to the ouevre. It was a night of rock and roll redemption, and all those kinds of adjectives that he generates. (See inspirational, joyful, jubilant, cathartic, all of those...)
We waited outside all day, we bonded, we stood for five and a half hours straight, and on the way home we left the radio off and we talked about music, about religion, about journalism, sports, about politics American and Canadian, and we talked about home. And we could have talked until the sun came up over Newfoundland.
Somewhere on the Trans-Canada Highway near East Hawkesbury, Gary looked up and out the window and said, "You guys have gotta see this sky. So many stars....."
It was that kind of a night.