BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN – ” Freehold New Jersey ” November 8th, 1996.

Posted: May 11, 2018 in CLASSIC ALBUMS, MUSIC
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Springsteen 11/8/96

This memorable homecoming stop on the Tom Joad tour sees Springsteen return to Freehold and his parochial school, St. Rose of Lima  Gymnasium in his hometown of Freehold, New Jersey on November 8th, 1996.. Joined by special guests Patti Scialfa and Violinist Soozie Tyrell joined in on six songs including “The River” and “Racing in the Street.”  Patti Scialfa added backing vocals to three songs with Springsteen and Tyrell, including the second-ever performance of “When You’re Alone” from the Tunnel of Love album.  It has only been performed live 10 times since this concert.   Bruce reminisces and tears up the set list for nine tour debuts, including “The River,” “Two Hearts” “Racing in the Street,” and a rare “When You’re Alone” and the only tour performances of “Open All Night,” “Used Cars” and “My Hometown.” The concert was capped off by the premiere of a song Springsteen had written especially for the occasion: “Freehold.”  The nine-minute number has Bruce recollecting some of his experiences growing up in the town.  It has never had a studio version released and has only been performed infrequently since its debut at this show.

Springsteen offered reminisces about his time growing up in Freehold during the concert.  Most of the concert featured Bruce going through the core of his his normal setlist from the Joad tour, but there were some variations especially chosen for the night.  Out of the 25 songs performed, nine were making their tour premieres.

This concert came in the middle of Springsteen’s solo acoustic tour for the Ghost of Tom Joad album.  However, this performance was even more intimate than most on the tour.  With all proceeds benefitting the Latino community center at the St. Rose of Lima Church, the concert was held in the church’s gymnasium with all attendees sitting in bleacher or folding chairs.  Tickets were only available to Freehold residents.

All volumes of The Bruce Springsteen Archive Series, plus concerts from 2014, 2016 and 2017, are available at Springsteen’s official live store for download and physical purchase.

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