Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Place Your Halftime Bets

As some of you may have heard, Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band are playing the halftime show at Superbowl 43 in Tampa, FL this Sunday. And for anyone who has ever spent their entire life endlessly devoted to the man and his music; or at least seen him perform live at least once or twice; this particular performance comes with considerable intrigue. Forget the fact that the show will be broadcast to every country around the world, or that Bruce has been known to drop the occassional F-bomb mid-performance, or that there exists the very real possibility that the band will have to circumnavigate the battered carcass of Kurt Warner; what is most intriguing for Springsteen fans the world over is the fact that the boys are faced with an extremely limited time constraint. And as anyone who has had the privelege of seeing the heart-stopping, pants-dropping, hard-rocking, booty-shaking, earth-quaking, nerve-breaking, history-making, legendary E Street Band can attest, there is simply no possible way to cram a Springsteen setlist into 10 minutes of network TV.

So the debate has been raging. Which 3 songs will they bust out? Will they go all pre-River? Will they represent every decade? Will the NFL have to get Troy Polamalu to drag the Boss off the stage as he's raging away at Rosalita during his 5th encore?

For the first time in the history of sports, there is more speculation and hype surrounding the halftime show than the game itself.

So my friends and I have been making our predictions. And after 4 full months of contemplation, here is the official Springsteen halftime setlist:

Opener - Glory Days (electrifies the crowd immediately; unmistakable opening riff; Springsteen changing the line "I had a friend, was a great baseball player...", to "I had a friend was a big football player..." - thanks to Deeve for that call)

Segueing into - My Lucky Day (obligatory track from the new album; fast enough to keep the crowd on it's feet; a solid enough track to sell a couple million albums with)
This Video has already been removed. To see it in it's entirety, click HERE.

Closing with - Badlands (the big man dominates this classic; the crowd sings along to the point that even John Madden joins in, his mic unknowingly turned on; the cameras pan the sidelines and see a teary-eyed Ken Wisenhunt screaming the lyrics)

Unexpected, unscripted, unendorsed, untelevised encore - Born to Run (Bruce comes running back out as the crew is tearing down the stage; we come back from commercial to find the crowd so fired up that a riot has erupted; the track culminates with the cannons firing from the pirate's ship at Raymond James stadium; the NFL cancels the 2nd half of the Superbowl because they know that nothing could ever top the performance they've just witnessed.)


Sean McCallum said...

A few notes on the clips:

"Glory Days" comes from a show in Buenos Aires in 1988. The Big Man has never been more bad-assed. Love the fact that David Sancious is on stage. Quite possibly the greatest introduction of all-time ("VAMOS!")

"My Lucky Day" is one of the better tracks on the new record. That's the official video, although I'm not sure how long it will be up because the official stuff usually can't be embedded into fine web-based forums such as this one.

"Badlands" comes from a show in Barcelona. I'm not sure, but I believe it is from 2008. This is a phenomenal version, and the crowd is clearly off its ass.

"Born to Run". If this isn't one of the greatest rock and roll montages of all-time, then I clearly have no idea of what the hell I'm talking about.

Anonymous said...


Is it possible to love a man you've never met? If so, then I am in deep, deep, real love with yer man Bruce.

I am going on the record in saying that Bruce will do a medley and in that medley will be (at the very least) -

Born to Run
My Lucky Day

I will think more and get back to you...

Lisa Springsteen

Sean McCallum said...


Damn, that's good. I really wish I'd thought of that.

Anonymous said...

This is how it will go down.....

1.) Born in the USA
2.) Song from the Wrester (or something new that I dont know)
3.) Glory Days
If there is a 4th song - Born To Run


Sean McCallum said...

Current odds on opening song from

Super Bowl XLIII - What Song will Bruce Springsteen sing to begin his Halftime Show at the Super Bowl?

Listed Competitors Only. Singles Only. Max $50.

The Rising 6/1

Born in the USA 21/20

Radio Nowhere 9/1

The Wrestler 13/2

I'm on Fire 14/1

Born to Run 9/4

Glory Days 11/4

Sean McCallum said...

My dad's classic prediction:

I think he will start off with Mary Queen of Arkansas then segway into Ponyboy/Used Cars and
then finish up with Froggy Went Acortin'

Seriously I think he will start with a fast song from the new record and then go straight into Glory Days (changing lyrics to football) and finish up with Born to Run.

Anonymous said...

Whatever dummy said he'd start with, "I'm On Fire" needs to get his head read...