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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Basic Biittner: Third Time's the Charm

Monday, March 30, 2009

I've been very fortunate, during my 53 years as a fan of Rock and Roll and comedy, to have been able to see many of my favorite performers live in concert. Paul McCartney, Elton John and Billy Joel, Bob Dylan, The Beach Boys, The Righteous Brothers, Neil Diamond, Willie Nelson, Bob Hope, Steve Martin, Bill Cosby, Steven Wright, Three Dog Night, Chicago, John Mellencamp, Paul Simon, Simon and Garfunkel, CSN, Crosby and Nash, and The Crickets are just some of the artists I've been able to enjoy in person.

Sometimes, getting tickets to these events can be a struggle. I remember, spending several hours on the phone one Saturday morning, receiving innumerable busy signals while trying to call for the McCartney tickets. Of course, when I finally "scored," all of that "wasted" time was quickly forgotten.

On the other hand ... sometimes it can just be a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Here's the story - I happened to be in the Twin Cities when a young Bruce Springsteen was playing there back in 1975, and I probably could have gotten tickets, since this was in the days before the release of the "Born To Run" album, before Springsteen became "The Boss." Now that I think of it - and I admit I may be wrong about this - Roy Orbison, another of my favorites, may have been appearing with him that night, too, either as the opening act or as the headliner, with the young Springsteen being second billed. Didn't happen, though, as I couldn't interest anyone else in going.

In the meantime, of course, "The Boss" became huge, and I've heard more than once that he and the E Street Band put on the best live Rock and Roll show on Earth, and I've wished I could get a chance to recover from my 1975 disappointment, and get to see him perform live.

My brother Doug and I were hoping that he might appear at the "Fifty Winters Later" we attended in February of this year at the Surf Ballroom, but strong rumors of a Springsteen appearance that night turned out to be just that - rumors.

I knew that Bruce and the E Street Band were going to tour this spring, and I was checking a web site a few weeks ago to see where all they were going to be playing, and, what do you know? The tour starts in San Jose, California and the second concert is at an arena in Glendale, Arizona. It just so happens that we are flying out to Phoenix the night before that concert for my nephew's wedding, and guess what? We're flying in late Thursday night, and the wedding isn't until Saturday night. Which means - you got it - I didn't have anything scheduled for Friday night. I contacted Doug, who lives in Phoenix, and he was able to get us tickets for Springsteen's show, so he and I will be going to see and hear the Boss and the E Street Band next week!

Like I said, sometimes it's a matter of being in the "right place at the right time." Or maybe "The third time's the charm" would be appropriate here as well.

At any rate, I'll try hard to remember this fortuitous circumstance the next time things don't seem to be going the way I'd like them to.

Rock on!

Dan Whitney
Basic Biittner