Where the Bands Are

In my blog I’ve named each entry after a Bruce Springsteen song or a line from a song. I’ve also sorted them in different categories, some of which with a fixed name. The categories and names are:

  • “Bruce Springsteen songs” [named after the song it’s about]
  • “Concert reviews” – fixed name: Where the Bands Are [followed by the band’s name in brackets]
  • “Film reviews” – fixed name: 57 Channels (and nothin’ on) [followed by the film’s name in brackets]
  • “Current issues” – news, updates on what’s going on in my life [usually named after a line or a piece of lyrics]

Sometimes an entry can belong to more than one category.

This entry is about the song Where the Bands Are, which was released on the Tracks box set in 1998. It was also included on The Ties That Bind: The River Collection (2015).

I’m pretty sure this song is not meant to be analysed or dissected at all. It holds no secret underlying meaning or message. It doesn’t claim to be nothing else but an obvious distributor of joy and happiness. The source of joy, of course, being music and seeing bands (preferably in local venues).

The singer has an urge to unchain himself from the mundane life he is leading. He wants to lose himself to the beat of loud rock ‘n’ roll music, preferentially with some woman (who in this song seems less enthusiastic about the idea). He wants to be where the bands are.

I hear the guitars ringing out again
Ringing on down Union Street
I hear the lead singer shouting out, girl
I wanna be a slave to the beat

I identify a lot with this song. I love attending concerts and not only Bruce Springsteen concerts (although I have to admit my best concert experiences were Springsteen ones). The concert venue is my happy place and although a shared experience is great I don’t mind going alone. When listening to live music you feel a connection, to the music and the band but also to the rest of the crowd and you are able to lose yourself and let your mind wander.

I was lucky to catch this song when it was last played, in Gothenburg (28/07/2012) – an amazing rendition that was dedicated directly to the many fans who had been following them around “from place to place, place to place”.

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