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Passing of a legend, Clarence Clemons of the Bruce Springsteen E Street Band

Back in the day before concert tickets were sold over the internet, the primary method to get tickets to a popular concert was to go to a Ticketmaster location and get in a line, often a long line.  In Hoboken, there would be Saturdays you would be walking on Washington Street in midtown and discover Bruce Springsteen tickets had gone on sale.  You knew because there would never be lines on the block for anyone else.  Similar lines would be forming all over New Jersey.  There were very valid reasons why.

In grammar school, a young guy used to come by in his trademark sportscar, a blue MGB Midget and drive some of us around while recounting about a new artist out of Ashbury Park who he absolutely loved.  As kids, we didn’t know what he was talking about but we listened as he told of a great band who always put on a great show.

In high school one of my best friends who would later go punk and take me to one of the Clash’s first ever shows in New York City was equally passionate about Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.  The shows would go on for hours he said, sometimes close to four hours and the audience would be as exhausted as the band from just watching.

Clarence Clemons, the saxophone player for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band passed away last night at the tender age of 69.  While older than his bandmates and the age of many of our parents, his music connected to people over decades.  He holds the title of the best rock and roll saxophone player.  He may hold it it in perpetuity.

There’ll be a lot of tears from grown men this day.  The Big Man’s passing is being felt in all parts of Hoboken, New Jersey and beyond.  For many, it’s the passing of an era, youth and a marker in our lives with one of the most recognizable signature sounds in modern music.

Here’s a clip of Clarence Clemons with the band in Dublin, Ireland – that’s right Ireland.
Listen to the love for the man:

InfotainMe posted Jungleland from the same 2009 tour’s stop in London.

Related:  The Newark Star Ledger does a legend justice:
http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/06/clarence_clemons_dies.html

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