Tuesday, 21 June 2011
Good Night, Big Man
I’m deeply saddened to hear of the death of Clarence Clemons, saxophonist and 40 year member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band this weekend. . He died, aged 69, after complications from a stroke.
I’m a huge Bruce fan, and Clarence’s loss feels enormous. The E Street Band have just felt like this unstoppable gang over the years, this ‘Band of Brothers’, as Bruce has called it, and Clarence has always felt like Bruce’s right hand man. The warmth felt by fans towards him whenever I have seen them live has always swept up from the audience, as he has stepped up to the mike to deliver another beautiful and passionate sax solo. He is totally irreplaceable.
A friend texted me the news saying he had played ‘Jungleland’ really loud in tribute. That’s a wonderful choice amongst so many iconic solos to choose from and I did the same. It’s well documented how much Bruce pushed Clarence to deliver that solo time and time again in the ‘Born To Run’ sessions.
There are lots of heartfelt tributes on the net, including one from Bruce on his website. I’ve provided below a youtube link to a song performed by some of the band which for me seems to sum up some of my feelings. ‘If I Should Fall Behind’ is a beautiful song, which these days always makes me think of my brother, Stu. I always find myself wiping away a tear after this particularly lovely performance, which has a great solo from Clarence. It must be terrible for Bruce and the rest of the band as they mourn the loss of their brother.
Good night, Big Man