Home state heroes Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey for the first time last night, treating fans to a 3:40+, 30-song marathon concert that kicked off a three-show stand at the venue. The Boss, at the age of 62, crowd surfed, just four songs into the show. Original E Street Band drummer Vini “Mad Dog” Lopez sat in with his old band on E Street Shuffle during the main set as well as the final two tunes of the evening.
[Photo via @STFU_Donny]
According to Backstreets, towards the middle of the show current E Street Band drummer Max Weinberg disappeared from behind the kit leading Springsteen to ask the crowd, “Where did Max go? What happened to the drummer? He got sick — we need an M.D.!” Mad Dog emerged and gave a thrilling performance on drums for E Street Shuffle, a tune from Springsteen’s second album (The Wild, The Innocent and The E Street Shuffle) recorded in the era before he parted ways with the band.
Lopez “left” the E Street Band in 1974 following a dispute with Springsteen’s then manager. Vini made previous appearances with the E Street Band back in 2003 at Giants Stadium and again in 2009 at The Spectrum. The Asbury Park native returned to add tambourine to a pair of songs which closed out the show – Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out and Twist and Shout.
Besides Lopez’s sit-ins, highlights from last night included the first Mansion On The Hill since early in the tour (complete with a story about Jersey Freeze in Springsteen’s hometown of Freehold), Prove It All Night with the 1978 intro and a two-song acoustic set performed for early arrivals. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band return to MetLife Stadium on Friday and Saturday.
Pre-Show Acoustic Set: Growin’ Up, For You
Set: Shackled and Drawn, Prove It All Night (’78 intro), The Ties That Bind, Hungry Heart, We Take Care of Our Own, Wrecking Ball, Death to My Hometown, My City of Ruins, Spirit in the Night, E Street Shuffle (with Vini Lopez), Jack of All Trades, Human Touch, Johnny 99, Darlington County, Working on the Highway , Easy Money, The Promised Land, Waitin’ on a Sunny Day, Mansion on the Hill, Racing in the Street , The Rising, Badlands, Land of Hope and Dreams
Encore: We Are Alive, Thunder Road, Born to Run, Rosalita, Dancing in the Dark, Tenth Avenue Freeze-out, Twist and Shout