The Never-Ending Bruce Springsteen Show

More

At three hours and 48 minutes, the Boss's Madrid concert may have been his longest ever.

BRUCE-body.jpgReuters

It's always nice to know, after umpteen-million Springsteen shows, that you've managed to attend the longest one in history. Last night, here in Madrid, Springsteen played for three hours and forty-eight minutes without a break, leading one expert to label this one the longest show in a multi-decade run of extremely long shows. And extremely thrilling. This one, before 60,000 people at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu (which is apparently also the site of some sort of regularly-scheduled sporting event), was one of the best -- people say (they actually do) that Springsteen loves playing Spain -- even before the country got punched in the face by the burst housing bubble, which naturally caused the Tribune of the Underwater Mortgage Holder and other Associated Victims of Very Large Banks to, of course, express, repeatedly, his solidarity -- and it seemed as if he would never leave the stage (he finally did, at 1:30 a.m., just after the closing of the Metro, alas.) He put on a full-blast revival show, but leaned heavily on the new album, about which I'll write more later this week, to coincide with the release of an Atlantc piece that might interest Goldblog readers.

Two quick observations, the first courtesy of my colleague Ron Brownstein, who was at the show as well (we were in the well-populated American pundit section of the stadium), who noted, as the crowd sang back to Bruce whole sections of "The River,"  that 60,000 people who don't speak English as a first language were nevertheless singing a 32-year-old American song in a Spanish soccer stadium, and isn't that, when you think about it, unbelievable? It was -- especially considering that "The River" was not a hit at the time, and is quite a depressing song. "Born in the U.S.A." is also a depressing song, unless you're not listening to the words, and 60,000 people also sang back this as well to Bruce -- a whole stadium of people we sometimes think of as a bit anti-American screaming "Born in the U.S.A."

The second observation: Southside Johnny, in his current incarnation, looks a lot like Eric Alterman. We met him backstage (Johnny, not Alterman) and I swear I thought it was Alterman at first. We also met Danny DeVito, who does not look like Eric Alterman. More on all of this later.

P.S. Yes, Goldbloggers, I'll explain later why I'm in Spain. It has to do with journalism.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. Author of the book Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror, Goldberg also writes the magazine's advice column. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. Previously, he served as a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward, and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

His book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. Goldberg rthe recipient of the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism. He is also the recipient of 2005's Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What's the Number One Thing We Could Do to Improve City Life?

A group of journalists, professors, and non-profit leaders predict the future of livable, walkable cities


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Global

From This Author

Just In