My new “Think Again” column is called “When Money Talks, Who Listens (besides politicians)?” and it’s here.
And my new Nation column is called "Obama’s Failures … and Ours" that’s here.
Also, Happy Birthday Tom Terrific! Brightest star of my pre-Springsteen childhood and adolescence.
"The Promise" ("The Darkness" Box)
As I’m sure you know it’s here. The only question I have is whether it’s the single greatest thing ever or only the single greatest thing you can buy right now. Anyway, what is there to say. I’d grown tired of “Darkness” a long time ago, but the 21 new songs—and new versions of old songs—are fresh and new and make you fall in love with pop music all over again, even if like me, you already were. The guys at Backstreets like the remix of Darkness but I’ve not listened to it. Neither have I watched the Houston ’78 show because they sent me two of the other disc and I’m waiting for the switch. But the Bluray of the outtakes from the ’76 recording session and the ’78 Phoenix show is to remember what it’s like—actually just about to feel like—what it is to be young again. Ditto the documentary, which has performances not included anywhere, and a beautiful picture of how a genuinely benevolent dictatorship operates. And the contemporary performance of Darkness is really kind of scary. It’s that good. I plan to have lots of people chime in about the release in the next few weeks and I will have more to say once I get the bluray of Houston. But what a gift. Oh and I almost forgot the notebooks. Goodness gracious, Bruce has really come through for the fanatical base and in a way that until recently, he purposely avoided. You can read all about what’s contained in the release here, and watch a few videos too.
The documentary, “My So-Called Enemy,” directed by Lisa Gossels, got terrific word of mouth at the Hamptons International Film Festival last month, and so I asked my young friend, seminary student (and daughter’s Bat-Mizvah tutor), Rachel Druck, to watch it with us and write up her thoughts. They appear below:
Rachel Druck on “My So-Called Enemy”
In the summer of 2002, at the height of the Second Intifada, I was staying with relatives in a suburb of Jerusalem. Over the course of the weekend, as I bonded with the family, I became a particular favorite of a ten-year-old cousin who enjoyed bragging to me about his fearlessness. The crack in his bravado came as I prepared to leave, when he took me aside and admitted that he was, in fact, scared of one thing: Arabs. It was a heartbreaking moment, not only because it was a testament to having lived through months of intense fear, but also because of what it said about the ways in which the next generation was already relating to those on the other side of the conflict. An Arab village was close enough that the morning call to prayer would wake me up every morning that I stayed with the family. Yet the extent to which my young cousin interacted with its inhabitants rendered them as replacements for the monsters who were hiding under his bed only a few years earlier.