Monday, June 18, 2012

Uptown Forever

One year ago today Clarence Clemons died. His long-time friend and musical brother in arms - Bruce Springsteen - eulogized him at a memorial service several days later. He later reprinted just a portion of his remarks on his web site so that they could be shared with fans all over:

Clarence doesn't leave the E Street Band when he dies.
He leaves when we die.
So, I'll miss my friend, his sax,
the force of nature his sound was,
his glory, his foolishness, his accomplishments,
his face, his hands, his humor, his skin,
his noise, his confusion, his power, his peace.
But his love and his story,
the story that he gave me,
that he whispered in my ear,
that he allowed me to tell...
and that he gave to you...
is gonna carry on.

If memory serves correctly the final time I saw a Springsteen concert at which the E Street Band included Clarence was at the end of the 2009 tour, when my buddy Dave Puteska and I sat high up at Madison Square Garden for the Saturday night show at which the album that was performed in its entirety was "The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle", which record includes tracks such as "Rosalita" that are known and revered in significant part for the sound of his horn. Even from our admittedly lousy seats, LD and I had a hellaciously fine time.

As has been proven night after night on this world tour, the Big Man has not left the E Street Band. They are with him and he is with them during every show. Living proof perhaps of the fact that the change that was made Uptown all those years ago was not just for the better, it was forever....

....and that no man gets left behind.

....especially not the Big Man.


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