1. Bruce Springsteen concerts are always amazing.
2. But they aren't always as amazing as what we saw at the KFC Yum! Center Saturday night. If you went, you witnessed something special.
3. The 26-song setlist is here.
4. On the original setlist but not played: "Out in the Street," "Jack of All Trades," "Jackson Cage," "I'm on Fire," "Cover Me," a cover of Eddie Floyd's "Raise Your Hand," a cover of Tom Waits's "Jersey Girl" (an alternative to "Rocky Ground") and "Bobby Jean."
5. Not on the original setlist but played: "Hungry Heart," "Streets of Philadelphia" (a request from a guy named Bubba who Springsteen met before the show), "Because the Night," "Growin' Up" (a sign request), "Open All Night" (a sign request), "Darlington County," "The River" (a sign request) and "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)" (a request via a bra).
6. No, he didn't play "Born in the USA," "Glory Days" or "Thunder Road." You got over that, just the same as I got over him having played "Waitin' on a Sunny Day," one of his
worst least good songs.
7. Saturday was Springsteen's first Louisville concert since April 15, 2000. According to Backstreets, "Bruce clearly remembered how long he'd been away as he spoke to the crowd during 'My City of Ruins,' proclaiming 'the E Street Band is back!' When wondering who was new, he asked the crowd, 'Who has never seen the E Street band before 2000?' He spoke of the old and new faces on stage, and also in the audience: 'I want to make sure there are some new faces out there! I don't want to feel like an old man up here!' And then, in a nod to Muhammad Ali's hometown, Bruce reminded everyone, 'I can still float like a butterfly and sting like a bee!'"
8. Six of the first seven songs were from 2002 or later.
9. Overall Springsteen played tracks from nine of his 17 regular studio releases. ("Streets of Philadelphia" appears on 1995's Greatest Hits and "Because the Night" is on the 1986's Live 1975-85 box set.)
10. He played at least one song from each his first seven albums, 1973's Greetings from Asbury Park through 1984's Born in the USA. "Streets of Philadelphia" was the sole song from 1985 through 2002 played.
11. Springsteen forgot the lyrics in "Sprit in the Night" and messed up the ending to "Open All Night."
12. He probably remembers the lyrics to "Hungry Heart," his first top 10 hit, but has been letting the crowd sing the first verse since shortly after it debuted in 1980.
13. Springsteen crowd surfed from a small stage on the floor back to the main stage at the end of "Hungry Heart."
14. He's 63 years old.
15. Springsteen said E Street Band singer/guitarist and his wife, Patti Scialfa, couldn't be at Saturday's show because she was with their daughter, an athlete who was competing in Lexington, Ky. Jessica Springsteen was riding in the Alltech National Horse Show $50,000 Puissance. She tied for second place aboard Temmie, a 12-year-old gelding.
16. Saxophonist Jake Clemons is the nephew of the late Clarence "Big Man" Clemons, long-time E Street Band sax player and Springsteen's main onstage sidekick, who died last year.
17. While Jake isn't about to replicate his father's brother's stage presence, his sax playing Saturday bettered Clarence's on the last few tours.
18. Jake is the second relative to fill in for a regular E Street Band member. Eighteen-year-old Jay Weinberg covered for his dad, Max, on drums on 2009's Working on a Dream Tour when the latter had obligations with The Tonight Show with Conan O' Brien (remember that show?).
19. Drummer Max Weinberg's biceps looked ripped Saturday night.
20. Springsteen is making three campaign appearances today alone for Barack Obama, but made zero references to either the president or the campaign Saturday night.
21. That didn't stop the guy in front of me, who had Romney/Ryan bumper stickers stuck to his hat and shirt from yelling at Springsteen to shut up and play when Springsteen was talking about the affect of Hurricane Sandy on his adopted hometown of Asbury Park, N.J. during "My City of Ruins."
22. That fan passed out standing up about 10 songs into the show. His wife held him up for a few songs before pushing him out Hannibal Lecter style.
23. I'm going to think about him when I cast my vote for Obama Tuesday and celebrate his re-election later that night.
24. "Growin' Up" was a request from a guy celebrating his 20th birthday. Springsteen invited him up on stage for the last verse. At the end, the guy yelled, "And there I was just an average guy. And now, god damn, I'm on Bruce's stage. And I'm still just an average guy." It was a reference to a story Springsteen used to frame the song around in concert. You can hear part of that version on the Live 1975-85 box set.
25. "Open all Night" is from 1980's solo acoustic Nebraska but the arrangement played Saturday night was from the 2006 Seeger Sessions Tour.
26. The owner of a Springsteen message board attended this show with me. He's seen Springsteen 36 times but didn't catch him on the Seeger Sessions Tour, nor does he own the studio or live albums Springsteen released with the Sessions band.
27. He's missing out.
28. During "Darlington County" Springsteen invited a group of women wearing pink cowboy hats up on stage.
29. During "Darlington County" at a 2009 concert in Nashville, Springsteen invited a group of women wearing pink cowboy hats up on stage.
30. At my spot, toward the front of the general admission section, there was nary a whiff of pot.
31. The other guy (the white one) featured in the video montage in the middle of "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" was original E Street Band member, organist Danny Federici. He died in 2008 from melanoma.
32. This link goes to a YouTube search for all the videos uploaded from Saturday's concert.
33. Springsteen played four songs that were requested via signs.
34. He first regularly took requests via signs on the 2007–2008 Magic Tour.
35. On the 1999-2000 Reunion Tour, Springsteen responded to sign requests by saying, "I ain't no fucking jukebox."
36. I'd be more successful in life if the amount of my brain dedicated to Springsteen trivia was allocated to other subjects.
Photo: Zach Everson