Bruce Springsteen at Reunion Arena in Dallas

Paul and I went to the Springsteen show last night. I wasn’t sure if I was going or not until the last minute as it’s been sort of an off-and-on thing. Steven promised to get me tickets and backstage passes but logistical problems threatened to interfere. Anyway, it was the first time I’ve ever done the backstage thing and it wasn’t at all like I’d expected. But, up until now, my complete knowledge of what goes on backstage came from Spinal Tap and Wayne’s World, so I guess it’s not too surprising that real life is different. The pass itself was a yellow, triangular sticker with the initials of the band member who provided it (“SV” in my case). Once you get it, you then have to find a security person who knows where “backstage” is. The show was at Reunion Arena in Dallas, so it would be more accurate to call it “beneathstage” or “crampedstorageclosetnowherenearstage”.

Once you get there, you find yourself in a room full of the local rich and famous; all of them standing around hoping to see one or more of the band members (and probably wondering how a computer geek like me got down there!). The band members are all off hiding behind a big black curtain and their assistants will occasionally come out and call a small group of hopeful visitors in for the “meet-and-greet”. Eventually Holly, Steven’s assistant, saw me and waved us back there. I introduced Paul to Steven and congratulated him on the SAG award he got last night for The Sopranos. Paul got his autograph (as well as an autograph from a well-known local sports figure in the waiting area – sorry, being a geek, I don’t follow that stuff! Somebody from the Dallas Cowboys I think).

The show itself wasn’t as interesting, primarily because of the unbelievably bad acoustics of Reunion Arena. Apparently, the only way to get the audio loud enough to carry is to turn it up way beyond the point where it’s totally distorted. Every concert I’ve heard there sounds the same – doesn’t really matter who’s playing. If you’ve ever stood behind a 747 jet engine while swinging a sack of angry weasels around your head, you’ll be familiar with the fine sound of a Reunion Arena concert. The band was fun to watch though and put on a good show. And they kept going forever; more than three hours.

I finally got out to the parking lot about 11:45 and after waiting another half hour for the traffic leaving the stadium, I went home and got some sleep. Today has mostly been spent fighting with a Windows NT print server problem (yuck) and ticking off items on my todo list. Tomorrow it’s back to perl coding.

Another Night at the DSO

It’s been another busy week. We are almost moved into the new building. I will probably be going back and forth between them for another week or two until the new T1 becomes functional and we can move the last of our servers. Even though we’ve still got things going on at the old building, I think we’ll declare Oct. 1st as the offcial opening day at the new place

Last night was DSO night again (Susan bought season tickets this year). The first two pieces were Violin Concertos, which I like only slightly more than piano concertos. Their one redeeming quality was the guest violinist, Midori. She is very talented and quite interesting to watch. The final piece for the night was Saint-Saëns Symphony No. 3 in C minor, otherwise known as the Organ Symphony. The organ at the Meyerson is really huge and this is one those pieces of music that really shows it off. It can produce some bass notes that shake the building and can generate more volume than the entire orchestra. Susan and I both agreed that the performance was very good and also seemed very different from the recordings we had heard. I’m not sure exactly how – I guess we need to listen to the version we have on CD and see if we can pinpoint the difference. We find that frequently classical CDs are recorded in a way the emphasizes particular instruments or groups of instruments, causing the recorded piece to sound nothing like the real thing – that could be what’s going on here.

In a completely different genre of music, Steven Van Zandt’s new web site is now online. Check it out.