The man who wrote a song that shares a name with the hurricane that has devastated his home state addressed the matter at a concert in Rochester, N.Y. last night.
On Wednesday, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band played a show in Rochester that had been delayed from the evening before. According to Backstreets.com, during his intro to the gospel rouser "My City Of Ruins," which was originally written about Asbury Park, N.J. and then re-purposed on the post-Sept. 11 album The Rising, Springsteen said this about Hurricane Sandy:
"We wish you a happy Halloween, but we are a rock 'n' roll band form the Jersey Shore, and tonight we carry a lot of sadness in our hearts. This was originally a song about my adopted hometown struggling to get on its feet — it struggled for 25 years, a quarter century, while we watched for Asbury to come back. And we are very proud to say over the past decade, it has risen up and flourished in a way I wasn’t ever sure I'd see in my lifetime. And it will do so again!"
"We're a band that you can't separate from the Jersey shore — still basically a glorified bar band... at your service! So we're gonna do this tonight from our hometown to your hometown. We'll send this out to all the people working down there: the police officers, the firemen, and also to the Governor, for doing such a fine job this past week."
In so doing, Springsteen gave his most vocal of superfans, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, the thing that the heretofore in-unrequited-love governor has most craved from the Boss man: Respect. First he makes nice with President Obama, then he finally gets some love from Springsteen. It was a big day for the Guv.
Later in the show, Springsteen and band brought out their cover of Tom Waits' "Jersey Girl" and dedicated it to "all the folks suffering in New York City, Connecticut, the Tri-State area, and especially for our fans suffering down on the Jersey Shore."
Much more about the Springsteen Rochester show, and a set list on Backstreets here.
UPDATE: Springsteen, who will perform on NBC's Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together telethon on NBC tonight, played State College at the Bryce Jordan Center on Thursday night, where he performed both the oldie but goodie rarity "Seaside Bar Song" and "4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)," in what was said to be a gripping, emotional rendition, according to earwitness reports. He again praised fireman and police and Christie, who he said is "doing a fine job."
Thanks to the indomitable Amy Rosenberg for this. I took the photo above at Springsteen show at the Wells Fargo Center back in March. A live versionof "Sandy" from the Nausau County Coliseum on Long Island on 12/29/80 - a show I was at, thank you very much - is below.