As part of his monthly live archival series, Bruce Springsteen has just issued yet another classic show from the E Street Band‘s famed tour behind his watershed fourth album, Darkness On The Edge Of Town. The new set, which was taped on July 1st, 1978 at Berkeley, California’s Berkeley Community Theatre, is the ninth concert from the legendary ’78 North American trek.
In addition to such concert staples as “Born To Run,” “Thunder Road,” “Spirit In The Night,” “Badlands,” “The Promised Land,” “Growin’ Up,” and “Rosalita (Come Out Tonight),” the Berkeley show features a brilliant take of Springsteen alone on the piano performing the Darkness On The Edge Of Town outtake, “The Promise,” which he dedicates by saying “I’m gonna do this for my pop.” Both of Springsteen’s parents — Doug and Adele — along with kid sister Pam were in attendance, living nearby in San Mateo, California. The concert, which features the legendary promo-only version of “Prove It All Night” released back in ’78, was engineered live on site by the great Jimmy Iovine.
Future MTV vee-jay J.J. Jackson spoke to Bruce Springsteen for KABC-TV during the L.A. run in ’78 following “The Boss'” sold-out July 5th gig at The Forum, and Springsteen shed light on how seriously he took his job: “Y’know, it’s, like, it’s the thing. . . It’s the, I guess, probably the only thing that I live for, y’know? (Laughs) And I just try to keep a hold on. . . I play Buddy Holly every night before I go on. That keeps me honest, y’know? (Laughs).”
Guitarist Steve Van Zandt explained to us that Bruce Springsteen was able to understand exactly how each member of the E Street Band would ultimately be able to serve him and his music: “Bruce handpicked the band himself, one guy at a time, y’know? And it was his band and we existed for him and to realize his vision, as I said. And he picked guys who could handle a wide variety of things and could basically follow orders (laughs), okay? We had, y’know, a really fast ability to learn. Every one of us, y’know, there was a lot of spontaneity going on in the show — a lot.”
The tracklisting to Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Berkeley – July 1, 1978’ is: “Badlands,” “Night,” “Spirit In The Night,” “Darkness On The Edge Of Town,” “For You,” “The Promised Land,” “Prove It All Night,” “Racing In The Street,” “Thunder Road,” “Jungleland,” “Paradise By The ‘C’,” “Fire,” “Adam Raised A Cain,” “Mona / She’s The One,” “Growin’ Up,” “Backstreets,” “Rosalita (Come Out Tonight),” “The Promise,” “Born To Run,” “Because The Night,” and “Quarter To Three.”