Columnist CJ LaCava
(Born in NJ and now in the UK)

Down to the Sweet 16, MSG Here I Come!
Posted on May 16, 2000 @ 10:00PM GMT

Here we are in mid-May. There are only 16 Springsteen shows left on the tour. After that, it might be quite a while before we get to see Bruce and the band again. No one knows if a new album, live set, or new tour will be announced.

The reports from the last few stands have been incredible. People who have seen over a dozen shows in 1999 & 2000 say that the Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, and Hartford shows were close to perfection. With only four more stops until MSG, the fans are very excited. There have been some very interesting setlists lately as well.

There is a lot of talk about the MSG stand on the news groups. People are debating what songs will get played, how long the last few shows will be, and what selection will end the July 1st show. All I can tell you is that myself and scores of others can't wait to see the band's last stand. I'm counting the days!

I'll be in NYC for the last week of June. I have tickets (nice ones) to the last three shows - thanks to my good friend Peter. I'll be checking the news groups and e-mail to see where the pre-show parties will be. I hope to meet a lot of fans while I'm out there.

It amazes me how we can now count on a pretty decent recording of every Springsteen show this time out. The boot quality from 2000 seems to be improving. There is a recording out from the Nashville show that is probably as good as it gets. Not an extra-ordinary setlist, but definately worth a listen. Great job to whoever made that one possible.

No boot releases from the 2000 tour have been announced yet by the big names. I'm sure we'll get MSG Nights 2000 from CC or somebody else. How about Where the Rivers Meet 2000? I'm sure there will be plenty after the tour ends. It'll be interesting to see which ones become the most popular in a few years.

It's worth mentioning there are some very nice ALD boots appearing from Oakland and Minneapolis 1999. While these are not my favorites (having the crowd in the background is a MUST for me), they do sound pretty good. You can really hear it all. I even like them better than the Boston ALD from Piggham (mostly due to the poor quality of the ALD recording from Boston compared to Oakland and Minneapolis).

It's worth mentioning the irony behind Gamble's The Last Show of the Century (ALD from Minneapolis). This bootleg was bootlegged and released by somebody else before Gamble's official release date! The bootleg of the bootleg sounded just as nice, but it was missing the bonus tracks from Philly. Now if somebody would just mix in the crowd for us . . .

Finally, I want to end with a picture and a short story:

This guy is Jeff Williams and he was sent from the back row to the front row in Indianapolis by the MIB. Jeff also plays the guitar and is a LONG time fan.

In his own words: "During Working on the Highway, Bruce threw down his guitar to me. I put it on and started playing - I couldn't believe it. When I handed Bruce his guitar back he motioned me up on stage - the next thing I new I was on stage playing with the E-Street Band. After the song ended Bruce and I shared a big laugh and a hug then we walked to the front of the stage, the crowd went nuts. Some guy in the third row took my picture and found me after the show so he could send it to me later."

Oh man. How nice that would be. You're a lucky man.

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