Clarence Clemons died and many a real deal E Street Band fan will have better things to say about him than I will, but I want to share this:
When I was a kid, which was in the ‘80s, I loved songs that had saxophone in them. It was only when I was older that I realized that more often than not, I was listening to Clarence Clemons. His sense of joy was infectious and though I only knew the most basic Bruce Springsteen information (you know, Jersey and the hits), I always knew that he had the coolest and biggest saxophone player.
A few years ago my dear friend Citizen Kerry called me at the last minute saying she had a spare ticket to see Springsteen live at Giants Stadium in New Jersey. I know enough about general pop culture to know this was something to be done before I died, so I went. We had a fantastic time. The music was great and I learned for the first time that Springsteen had written “Because the Night,” with Patti Smith. It had been one of my favorite songs for years and I had no idea. What a dummy.
But the highlight of the entire night was getting to see and hear Clarence Clemons do his sax solo on “Born to Run” live and in-person. I listened to the song on repeat for weeks afterward. When I heard the news that he had passed away, I was sad. Then I remembered the concert, and all I could think was “thank you.”