September 20: Chicago

As promised, Chicago got the full Born to Run album performed in its original album order. And that brought substantial changes in the set list. The show started with the powerful «Seeds», followed by «No Surrender», «Johnny 99» and «Cover Me». Later came «Outlaw Pete», «Hungry Heart» and a disastrous «Working on a Dream» («That was the sound of the E Street Band fucking up! And it was not pretty! Yeah, it can still happen even after all these years!», said Bruce, who just a little later corrected himself: «It wasn’t the band fucking up, it was the bossman fucking up!»).

After that, the full Born to Run arrived, performed in the album’s order, the highlights being «Backstreets» and the duo «Meeting Across The River»/»Jungleland». For «Meeting» Bruce had two guests musicians onstage: Curt Ramm (Seeger Sessions Band) playing trumpet, and Richard Davis playing upright bass (he’s the one playing in the original studio version, and already guested in the same song during the Milwaukee March 2008 show).

Those sublime 40 minutes were followed by the less than sublime «Waitin’ on a Sunny Day», a real lowdown, and the usual end-of-the-main-set songs, this time finishing with «Badlands», ala Magic tour.

New changes arrived in the encores. After «Hard Times», the band started playing the «Raise Your Hand» riff while Bruce picked up sign requests. And those signs brought a couple of tour debuts: The Crystal’s «Da Doo Ron Ron» (another song written by the late Ellie Greenwich, along with Jeff Barry and Phil Spector) and «Rockin’ Robin» (written in 1958 by Leon Rene and recorded by Bobby Day, Gene Vincent, The Hollies and The Jackson Five).

«I’m Goin’ Down» (another sign request), «American Land», «Dancing in the Dark» and «Rosalita» closed a great show in front of an enthusiastic audience, that even sang «Happy Birthday» to Bruce during the encores, for his upcoming 60th birthday.

See complete set list.