Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Santa Spotted at Last Night's Springsteen Show in Anaheim

Last night, I was lucky enough to attend one of the final shows on this leg of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band's "Wrecking Ball" tour at the Honda Center in Anaheim, and, aside from the miserable traffic, it was a terrific evening.  (It took us over 2.5 hours to get to the venue from Downtown L.A., and at least an hour of that was spent within half a mile of the venue. The trip home was around 1.5 hours, thanks to construction that narrowed the 5 Freeway to one lane for an extended stretch in Commerce. Sorry, with all the traffic talk, I guess I'm sounding a lot like a bit player in SNL's The Californians, huh? OK, enough of that.) Anyway, the show ran just about 3.5 hours (or an hour less than the total commute [sorry!]), during which they played a great mix of stuff from Bruce's latest album and classics from his 40-year recording career . . . and, of course, their penultimate number featured a much-anticipated visit from Santa and his elves:

(Apologies for the lousy camera work, but I'm still trying to figure out my new smartphone and I'd migrated to the back of the floor area by the end of the show to avoid the little bit of distortion from the amps closer to the stage.) In addition to the 16 members of the extended E Street Band on stage, two additional musical guests paid a visit — Mike Ness of the Orange County-based punk rock band Social Distortion, and Tom Morello, formerly of Rage Against the Machine and currently touring on his own as The Nighwatchman. Morello's become a fixture at Bruce's L.A.-area shows, and he added his trademark high-energy guitar and vocals to seven of the 28 songs last night, including Santa Claus is Coming to Town. There's nothing like a Springsteen show to recharge your batteries, give the old heart a workout and make you feel young again. Next time, however, we're taking the train.

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