Rock replaces ruck as Springsteen hits Thomond Park
35,000 fans line out to see The Boss
Bruce Springsteen performing in Thomond Park, Limerick with the E Street Band. Photograph: Liam Burke/Press 22
Bruce Springsteen fans “waiting on a sunny day” weren’t left disappointed in Limerick last night where a sun-drenched Thomond Park proved the perfect venue for the first concert of his sell-out Irish tour.
“The Boss” conquered the hallowed rugby ground where 35,000 fans were treated to a 3½-hour extravaganza of the American icon’s greatest hits.
As Limerick continued to bask in the glory days of its first Munster hurling final victory in 17 years, the timing of Springsteen’s first Irish performance couldn’t have been been better for a city still firmly in the mood to party.
And true to form, Springsteen made sure there was plenty of dancing until dark at the first Irish concert of his Wrecking Ball tour.
Delighted fans who arrived early were treated to an impromptu performance by The Boss shortly before 5.30pm when he performed three songs including For You on piano, and Hearts of Stone on acoustic guitar and harmonica.
Accompanied by his 18-piece outfit which included his fabled E Street Band, the 62-year-old officially arrived on stage shortly before 7.30pm when he promised to fill ecstatic fans “with the everlasting power of rock ’n’ roll”.
He opened the show with a powerful rendition of the old-time classic This Little Light of Mine followed by his hit American Land.
Some diehard fans had camped out at Thomond Park for up to five days before last night’s concert, such was their determination to claim one of the prime positions at the front of the stage.
“I have travelled across Europe to see him so why not Limerick?” said Dutch fan Jeffrey Mulliner.
“If your favourite addictions are talking, alcohol, and Bruce Springsteen it’s not that bad really!”
The Springsteen carnival moves on to Cork tomorrow night for a concert at Páirc Uí Chaoimh in front of 36,000 fans.
He will then play at Kings Hall Arena in Belfast on Saturday night. His final Irish concerts are at Nowlan Park, Kilkenny, on Saturday, July 27th and Sunday, July 28th.