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The Big Man goes to The Big Man – Clarence Clemons dead at 69

It’s a depressing thought that many of my recent entries are obituaries. We seem to be losing too many legends, and Clarence clemons is no exception. While I’m not a big fan of Springsteen’s music (though I like his songwriting) the massive personality of Clemons’ sax is all over The Boss’s work like a rash, and in a good way. If he’d only recorded ‘Born to Run’ it’s enough to make him the stuff of legend, and the music world will be a sadder place without him.  The fact that he was the only member of the E street band to appear on that iconic album cover says it all. R.I.P. Clarence.

Kev Moore

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June 19, 2011 - Posted by | Music, Recording, Rock, Writing | , , , , , , ,

4 Comments »

  1. I’m deeply sad that the Big Man has gone – so now two members of the finest live band I’ve ever seen have gone to the great gig in the sky.

    Given the range of Bruce’s work, especially in the last couple of decades, I still find it hard to see why a good number of music fans haven’t really got into his catalogue.

    Although I’ve been to hundreds (thousands?) of gigs over the last 40-odd years, the various times I’ve seen Bruce live still rank as most of the great musical experiences of my life. I suppose those that haven’t seen his live gigs just hear popular radio selections & don’t catch the full buzz.

    The sheer power, energy and love that Bruce & the band puts out to the audience, yet somehow simultaneously draws back the collective energy of tens of thousands of people that are having a great time, singing & dancing along to every song, is simply a life-affirming experience.

    Other bands, like the Who, have come very close, but Bruce IS the boss!

    When the spotlight moments for Clarence came, as he’d spin round blowing raw-arsed sax through the guitars & drums into the sky, a massive crackle of electricity would run through the band & crowd to push everyone higher.

    Every Bruce gig I’ve seen over the last 30-odd years has just simply left me floating along for a day or two, though maybe with a slightly hoarse throat and aching limbs.

    So my memories and my brother’s comprehensive Bruce live video collection will continue to fire up my energy, and Clarence will never be forgotten. Who carries the torch forward now?

    Comment by David Mortimer | June 19, 2011

  2. It’s a very good question Dave. There’s not many in the Clarence/Junior Walker mold, is there? Big shoes to fill.

    Comment by kevmoore | June 19, 2011

  3. Well, Kev – I’m thinking now that Bruce can perhaps call on a living legend such as Pee Wee Ellis – a great sax man with James Brown and with an impressive catalogue of other solo, band & session work over the decades.

    He’s still actively gigging and can even give a good vocal holler too, as demonstrated on the fantastic Van Morrison epic “Summertime in England” (Common One album). Given the summer solstice, this track is now mandatory listening!

    I’d also recommend a visit to the link below, which provides a magnificent “tribute to Clarence” montage. You’ll find all sorts amongst hours of stuff featuring the Big Man – not only with Brooce & the E St. Band, but with Ronnie Spector, etc:

    http://www.wolfgangsvault.com/playlists/clarence-clemons-tribute/playlist-3037273.html?utm_source=NL&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=110621

    Try it – you know it makes sense!

    Comment by David Mortimer | June 21, 2011

  4. Such a sad loss to the world.By all accounts he was such a nice down to earth guy as well.I am a great fan of Bruce and his band and have seen them play in the states as well as London,and always a great show. R.I.P. Clarence……………………..departed from this world but the music lives on.Never forgotten.

    Comment by Tony Fowler | June 22, 2011


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