March 23, 2012 – 4:28 am

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

Austin 2012 [no label, 2CD]

Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theater, Austin, TX; March 15, 2012. A wee bit distant but still a very good audience recording.

No matter what, Bruce Springsteen, like Patti Smith, does carry a certain amount of weight with what he says. As someone who doesn’t mince his words, expectations are especially higher with the man they call The Boss.

In his review of the SXSW Austin concert, Joshua Ostroff of wrote:

Springsteen arrived at South by Southwest as the keynote speaker, but also as a rock star with a new album, ‘Wrecking Ball,’ to promote. Inspired by the financial crisis that gave rise to the Occupy movement, Springsteen’s angry new anthems like ‘We Take Care of Our Own’ and the title track gave the electrifying concert the feel of a rally. Or rather, the feeling that it should have been a rally.

Springsteen has always represented the hard-luck working man, as evidenced by his performance of song like ‘Badlands,’ off 1978’s ‘Darkness on the Edge of Town.’ But times are tougher now, and it’s more about the no-working man.

Though a song like ‘My City in Ruins’ was released in the wake of 9/11 (though about Springsteen’s hometown Asbury Park), when he performs it in 2012 it feels like an apt descriptor of the world, whether it’s the blood-soaked streets of Syria or the foreclosure-ridden avenues of Florida. “Rise up,” he sang repeatedly last night, but it seemed like maybe Springsteen just meant get to your feet, not take to the streets.

The only time Occupy was mentioned was when Tom Morello - who joined Bruce for the concert (and festival) highlight, a searing run-through of ‘Ghost of Tom Joad’ - blurted out on the mic that his own Occupy South by Southwest event would be happening Friday night…

Springsteen sang of people sleeping under bridges in ‘Tom Joad,’ railroad workers taking a stand in the epochal new song ‘We Are Alive,’ and “sending the robber baron’s straight to hell” on ‘Death to my Hometown,’ but it’s a 99 per cent message he plans to take on a stadium tour where he will sing to people who can actually afford Springsteen tickets.

It’s wonderful that Bruce has thrown in with this still-growing movement and, during songs like ‘Shackled and Drawn,’ encouraged people to “stand up and be counted.” But he’s hardly emulating, say, Rage Against the Machine’s actions during another pivotal election year 12 years ago when they staged actual protest concerts. Or the protest concerts of the 1960s, as we were reminded of when Animals’ singer Eric Burdon came out to duet with Bruce on his Vietnam-era anthem ‘We Gotta Get Out of This Place.’ Or even the case-specific activism practiced by Arcade Fire who have done much to support Haiti.

Maybe it’s not enough to chronicle the downtrodden, maybe they need an arising, too.

While writing this piece, I went outside to clear my head and was approached by a well-spoken, out-of-work car salesman who had been turned away from the Salvation Army shelter until the next day and was looking to raise enough money to get a cheap hotel room for the night. It reminded me of a conversation I’d had with a cab driver when I arrived, who said Texas doesn’t have a proper welfare system to take care of its poor once their unemployment runs out, a fact made clear by the sheer number of homeless people downtown mixed among the drunken partiers and corporate branding.

As Jimmy Cliff, another special guest and the legendary protest singer behind ‘The Harder They Come,’ sang during his brief three-song mini-set, “there are many rivers to cross,” and as this economic crisis continues, more and more people need help finding their way over. Springsteen himself sang in ‘We Are Alive’ of the need “To carry the fire and light the spark/To fight shoulder to shoulder and heart to heart.”

It’s a powerful message, made even stronger by Springsteen’s outsize charisma and his multicultural and multi-generational E Street Band’s outsize skills. But during this Occupy-influenced election year maybe he needs to follow Woody [Guthrie]’s lead and take his protest from stadium seats to the city streets.
Click here for the full article.

Thanks to prof_peabody for taping and sharing the tracks at The Traders’ Den. Thanks also to thull1 for the artwork.

Location: near center, 25 ft from stage
Source: DPA4023 > Aerco MP2 > R-09HR
Transfer: USB > Wavelab 5 edits (dither with UV22HR) > CDWAVE > FLAC

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (224 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Disc 1
Track 101. Intro (2.5MB)
Track 102. I Ain’t Got No Home (7.0MB)
Track 103. We Take Care Of Our Own (7.1MB)
Track 104. Wrecking Ball (9.6MB)
Track 105. Badlands (11.2MB)
Track 106. Death To My Hometown * (7.0MB)
Track 107. My City Of Ruins (17.2MB)
Track 108. Seeds (9.6MB)
Track 109. E Street Shuffle (11.9MB)
Track 110. Jack Of All Trades * (10.6MB)
Track 111. Shackled And Drawn (9.0MB)
Track 112. Waitin’ On A Sunny Day (9.1MB)
Track 113. The Promised Land (11.0MB)

Disc 2
Track 201. The Ghost Of Tom Joad * (13.0MB)
Track 202. The Rising (8.0MB)
Track 203. We Are Alive (10.4MB)
Track 204. Thunder Road (13.6MB)
Track 205. Rocky Ground ^ (9.3MB)
Track 206. Land Of Hope And Dreams (15.2MB)
Track 207. The Harder They Come @ (6.2MB)
Track 208. Time With Tell @ (7.3MB)
Track 209. Many Rivers To Cross @ (8.4MB)
Track 210. We Gotta Get Out Of This Place # (8.8MB)
Track 211. Tenth Avenue Freeze-out (13.5MB)
Track 212. This Land Is Your Land % (10.8MB)
Track 213. Outro (2.5MB)

* with Tom Morello
^ with Michelle Moore
@ with Jimmy Cliff
# with Eric Burdon
% with Alejandro Escovedo, Joe Ely, Tom Morello, Arcade Fire, Low Anthem

The E Street Band
Bruce Springsteen - vocals, guitar
Roy Bittan - piano
Nils Lofgren - guitar, electric banjo, vocals
Patti Scialfa - guitar, vocals
Garry W Tallent - bass
Steve Van Zandt - guitar, vocals
Max Weinberg - drums

Soozie Tyrell - violin, vocals
Charlie Giordano - keyboards
Cindy MIzelle - vocals
Curtis King - vocals
Clark Gayton - trombone, tuba
Curt Ramm - trumpet
Barry Danielian - trumpet
Ed Manion - saxophone
Jake Clemons - saxophone

Click here to order Springsteen’s new album, Wrecking Ball.

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Click here for closed shows.
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  1. 42 Responses to “BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN - AUSTIN 2012”

  2. Thank you very much!

    By Improper Bostonian on Mar 23, 2012

  3. I liked Bruce a lot better before he got so damn earnest and left-wing propagandizing.

    By ken on Mar 23, 2012

  4. I like Bruce a lot more since he got so damn earnest and starting telling the truth…oops, I mean left-wing propagandizing to right wingers.

    By Mike on Mar 23, 2012

  5. I respect ‘the boss’s talent but i liked him a lot better before he got damn earnest and left wing propagandizing as well…oops was that mean spirited…(cringe) sorry.

    Bob Lefsetz had a great article on bruce and his ticket prices.Still all about the dollar bill y’all..

    By matt_the_cat on Mar 23, 2012

  6. Bob Lefsetz had a great article on bruce and his ticket prices.Still all about the dollar bill y’all..

    hey everyone is entitled to make as much as he or she can..I use to get the lefsetz` letters until I read them..unsubbed…

    By sluggo on Mar 23, 2012

  7. Well Ken, you still have Ted Nugent! He’s every bit Bruce’s equal…if your real name is Sean Hannity.

    By Improper Bostonian on Mar 23, 2012

  8. Was Badlands, Born in the USA or the Nebraska cd too earnest and left wing? Even songs like Workin on a Highway gave tribute to the working man. You guys crack me up. All you want is Dancing in the Dark, Hungry Heart and Girls In Their Summer Clothes. Life goes deeper than lyrics that are zippidee do da. Woody Guthrie songs live on because they are truthful. That’s why Bruce still performs This Land is Your Land, the most important American song ever. Springsteen’s songs are important to listen to as well. He’s simply carrying on a musical tradition.

    By Mike on Mar 23, 2012

  9. Easy, kids. Let’s not let a foul subject like politics ruin the joy being shared by BigO’s generous post. Thanks, BigO!

    By TDC on Mar 23, 2012

  10. Who you tryin to kid, kid?
    Wrap it in a fine philosophy
    Who you tryin to kid, kid?
    But your bottom line still says, me, me, me!
    Who you tryin to kid, kid?
    Good, bad, laugh and scorn
    Blame yourself for kiddie porn
    You save whatever’s cute and squeals
    But you kill that thing that’s in your womb
    Would not want no baby boom!
    …and your compassion’s ankle deep!
    an excerpt from an 80’s song by Steve Taylor

    Go look up what rich, non-Obamacare Washington Liberals like Joe Biden gave to charity each year. Joe gave less than $400. But there are probably Repub’s like that too. Compassion that is ankle deep. When I was working 4 years ago, I brought home $24,000 a year (the most I ever made), and gave about a thousand to charity. A lot of what they do is feed the homeless at church and go out to places in the desert where homeless live to give food, blankets, jackets and other winter clothes to them. The Vineyard was founded by Jesus freak hippies and bikers during the Jesus Movement in the late 60’s and early 70’s. They also support the local food bank (that’s where my monthly bag of food comes from). When the Catholic Charities could no longer run the shelter, the Vineyard and other churches, along with the city, are chipping in to reopen it. And you know what? My pastor’s favorite music is Bruce Springsteen. So I d/l these for him. I scrubbed one of the “F-bombs” from the last offering, a very “sirius” recording.

    By 3yrsnojob on Mar 23, 2012

  11. Screw this guy. There was a time I would have shot someone to go see Bruce Springsteen. Now? I work for a company and I basically get paid to go see the concert….. Bruce was here last week…. I didn’t even bother to go in and watch the show. His politics and ramblings have even ruined my old memories of seeing him on THE RIVER tour and other 80’s times.

    Furthermore, THAT Bruce Springsteen of my youth would detest THIS Bruce Springsteen of today… the one that shows up at John Kerry rallies and tells people to “FOLLOW ME”!

    Forget you, Bruce….. you ruined a really good thing.

    PS: Ed…. did you see BRUCE in BIRMINGHAM in November of 2002? I was at THAT show! What a fun night! It was the RETURN OF DARLINGTON COUNTY! It was the 1st time he played it since 9-11!

    I miss THAT Bruce….the one that rocked and didn’t campaign and tell people to “follow me”

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 23, 2012

  12. When I said “Screw this guy” ….. I was talking about Springsteen…. that was NOT directed at any of you fellow BIG O readers and supporters

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 23, 2012

  13. I liked Bruce a lot better before I got so damn earnest and left chickenwing eaters behind me.Now I have to say he sounds like Peter Maffay to me.

    By fruchtas on Mar 24, 2012

  14. not that im all that interested in this either way… but.. when this show is finally aired it would be nice to post it in its edited form just to have it in superb quality.
    course wavflac will have it better than we will and he wont share. lol.
    btw off topic - donovan is on conan obrien on wed. this is very rare!! i just dont know how to tell everyone.

    By darth on Mar 24, 2012

  15. So… All these small-minded right-wingers here. They apparently don’t look at anything on the rest of BigO’s site, do they? I don’t mean the stuff about Asian porn. I mean the political stuff. If they ever did, they probably wouldn’t come here to just leech all the free music.

    Of course, instead of just immediately turning a deaf ear to the things Bruce is singing and talking about these days, how about giving it a listen, letting the words sink in, and maybe giving it some thought?

    Easy to dismiss a rich rock star, sure, but he’s got more concern and compassion for the less fortunate than any of the goddamned GOP’ers who are systematically taking away our rights, are in the back pockets of big business, and want the Christian church to dictate how we live.

    Obama’s not entirely blameless, because he’s been without a spine for much of his presidency, but he inherited the messes we’ve been in, and the Republicans are more concerned with blocking his (sometimes weak) attempts to help common Americans than actually helping to get the country back on track. Obama also got us the hell out Iraq and he found Bin Laden. Yet the Republicans continue to play games with our lives.

    Get your heads out of your a**es, sheeple!

    By Shaun on Mar 24, 2012

  16. Shaun,

    You just don’t “GET IT”, do you?

    As RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE so aptly sang:

    “Keep believing all the lies that they’re telling you, And buying all the products that they’re selling you….they say JUMP and you say HOW HIGH?, You’re BRAIN DEAD!”

    They were talking about the true Sheople like you. Run along and go vote for who Bill Maher tells you to…. you don’t want to look uncool now do you?

    PS: You will obviously respond the way typical liberals do by calling me a name (as you already have)… so go ahead and say something brilliant like “YOUR MAMA!”

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 24, 2012

  17. Hmmm, shaun, on STNG, Q had an expression for Worf. It just may apply to you.
    It is unfair to lay on everyone here a generality, and a bogus one at that. I suggest you look up which candidate has received the most Wall $treet money than all the other candidates combined. Then ask why the Trillions of dollars he took out of the private sector hasn’t helped Main Street, but somehow the banks, the corporations, Wall Street, and big business are doing fine and getting richer. I didn’t see him pull the trigger, somehow I missed that. More guts than Clinton I guess, or just maybe more cold-hearted. Just because we don’t post here our responses re: other vital information this website has to offer, doesn’t mean we don’t read it. Do you think I downloaded all of Springsteen’s posts here if I didn’t care to hear it? I don’t just hear it, I LIVE IT! READ MY NAME!! My next post will be with my new name - 4yrsnojob. I have never received government assistance - so far, yet I have no money. NOW tell me I’m a money-grubber! I am a god-blessed GOP’er. My twin is a non-Christian Liberal getting his degree. Last year for the first time he gave me some help - a check for $100. Said he couldn’t afford to help me this year. He makes several hundred thousand dollars a year! Has his own yacht! When my wife was dying of colon cancer, he didn’t lift a finger financially to get her to a real doctor, instead of a clinic nurse practioner. She applied for Medicare and SSI - it finally came through - after she was dead. The Feds demanded the $670 SSI back! The democrats ran both houses of Congress and Obama had the White House and had veto power the first 2 years. Don’t you get your news outside of your narrow-minded Liberal interests at all?

    Get your head out of our ***es, shaunple! Go troll some other website, maybe Politico, MSNBC, LATimes, OWN, etc. or go visit Gore at his 20 times the average energy footprint home. Watch out for his SUV’s and the aircraft parked in his private landing strip nearby. Why don’t you watch the Aviator DVD and see how the eastern elite “educated” family talk amongst themselves. They all think that way, talk that way, because they don’t associate themselves with normal folks in “flyover” country that they have such distain for.

    By 3yrsnojob on Mar 24, 2012

  18. High five, Russian Assassin!

    By 4yrsnojob on Mar 24, 2012

  19. I’ll repeat - Easy kids - this is a MUSIC site!
    I’m a long-time Bruce fan who appreciates his music but doesn’t agree with most of the politics, but respects his right to voice them.
    If you don’t like the politics Bruce is preaching - DON”T DOWNLOAD THIS POST! Nobody’s making you download for FREE.
    If you love music and you pass on this, while it’s your choice to do so, you must not love music that much. Remember how “MISUNDERSTOOD” the song “BORN IN THE USA” was…

    By TDC on Mar 24, 2012

  20. By the way - Rage Against The Machine” covered “The Ghost Of Tom Joad” and Tom Morello is not only on the album but also on this concert…

    By TDC on Mar 24, 2012

  21. Do people (left and right) post their political rants here because no-one could be bothered listening to their bullshit IRL?

    I’m here for the music. And… thanks for this post, Big-O!

    By tony on Mar 24, 2012

  22. Yes, thanks TDC for putting the ignoRANT GOP moronity in its place.

    Or, yo, fascist boy, “Rage” wasn’t talking about the left, they were bashing the right.

    Surprised that, yet again, some GOP dope gets it wrong.

    By Yanni Go Go on Mar 24, 2012

  23. Dear Yanni Go Go,

    How do you KNOW they were talking about the RIGHT?

    Not that it could also possibly apply to you open minded / diversity celebrating liberals, right?

    btw…. stop somoking pot…. you are making a fool of yourself

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 24, 2012

  24. There’s nothing like a forth coming election to bring out the best in people!

    By George W Bushell on Mar 25, 2012

  25. Provocative rock ‘n’ roll! Great post, BigO! Encore!!!!

    By bill g on Mar 25, 2012

  26. Nobody for President.
    Who helps you when times are bad?

    By sking on Mar 25, 2012

  27. Ah. I found the original page too.

    By sking on Mar 25, 2012

  28. Russian Assassin needs to do his homework, lol!

    By Tom L. on Mar 25, 2012

  29. Yanni Go Go - How dare you take my completely neutral comments and assume I was putting the GOP in its place? This is a music forum. If you want to use it to talk politics, that’s fine, but please don’t put words in my mouth.
    I’m here to sing the praises of BigO and Bruce Springsteen. Peace…

    By TDC on Mar 25, 2012

  30. How so TOM L.?

    Please expalain.
    I await your answer


    The Russian Assassin

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 25, 2012

  31. I remember being chased by a worm when I was very young. I think there’s something in that for all of us.

    By E on Mar 25, 2012

  32. Sad to see all of this political hatred on this website. This is about MUSIC. I hope this isn’t a new trend. There’s already enough of this foolishness on the web!

    By Ernie Clark on Mar 26, 2012

    How so TOM L.?

    Please expalain.
    I await your answer


    The Russian Assassin

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 27, 2012

    How so TOM L.? You made an accusation, now it is time to back it up. I realize foolish liberals like yourself do not understand that concept, but it is time nonsense like yours is held accountable.

    So I ask you a third time…..

    Please explain.
    I await your answer


    The Russian Assassin

    By THE Russian Assassin on Mar 30, 2012

  35. whats with the weird name

    By david on Mar 31, 2012

  36. Saw Bruce in Boston Monday night. Fantastic!

    By TDC on Mar 31, 2012

  37. I am stunned by the negative posts. This is a live, free Bruce show. A current one. Within days of it happening. If you feel he is out of touch with those that are poor, working class, struggling, or down trodden because he is wealthy, you are missing the point, and it is odd you would listen at all. How else is a message going to be carried to millions of peopl i.e. Bruce fans, that can do something about it. “We Take Care Of Our Own” means just that: when government fails on a massive level We need to step up and do what we can

    By Brett on Apr 1, 2012

  38. Well put Brett. Dems/Reps what’s the difference. Whoever is in power has control. The government is too big and wasteful. We must as Bruce says “We Take Care Of Our Own”

    By Mr. Bill on Apr 4, 2012

  39. Thanks Mr. Bill. I love this Bruce more than the one I first heard in fourth grade when The River came out, because he has allowed himself to change. His music is different, his views are as well. I don’t mind those whom do not care for him, but the viciousness is startling. We have lost courteousness and civility online. That said, please posr more Wrecking Ball shows!!!!!

    By Brett on Apr 8, 2012

  40. Sorry. Post is what I wanted to type.

    By Brett on Apr 8, 2012

  41. That Springsteens’s songs are stirring such emotions and debate at least means they have a point-of-view. Can’t say that about many of the so-called “artists” the record companies keep trying to spoon-feed us.

    If ya’ don’t like Springsteen’s politics…why did ya’ click on the link?

    Thanks for posting the show.

    By Turko on Apr 13, 2012


    if anyone has a hard time dl’ing this track and needs help i might be able to offer some suggestions. youtube has altered some things again recently. and most of the programs that are made for this purpose are trying to keep up with those changes. theyve done something recently in the last few weeks and now today again.
    this seems to be the 4th time this song was performed. nice song. if anyone who i talk to needs it from me feel free to ask for it.

    By darth on Nov 23, 2013

  43. Nice show here. Great hearing Bruce with the special guests.

    By Matt on Sep 6, 2014

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