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Bruce Springsteen Performs Longest Ever "Today" Concert

September 28, 2007 7:58 PM ET

Today show live concerts normally air between 8:30 and 9:00 AM, but this morning Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band broke the rules and played the show's longest-ever set. "I can count on one hand the number of acts we would seek this for," Today executive producer Jim Bell tells Rock Daily. "[Springsteen] is known for playing longer than scheduled, so we were prepared. He was supposed to play about four songs and he played seven." The final set list was a mix of classics and new cuts from Magic: "The Promised Land," "Radio Nowhere," "Livin' in the Future," "My Hometown," "Night," "Last to Die" and "Long Walk Home." Bell says this morning's crowd ranks among the show's largest, extending onto the plaza of 30 Rockefeller Center and including two women who arrived yesterday morning from Ohio to claim their front-row spot (giant screens were set up so everyone had a decent view). "Bruce had the Magic this morning, and we've had a lot of great feedback coming in from all quarters from people saying how special was," Bell quips. After the show was over, Springsteen and Co. packed up and headed back to New Jersey, where tonight they'll play the final of three benefit warm-up gigs for their fall tour.

Related Stories:
More On New Bruce Springsteen Album: Producer Brendan O'Brien Reveals All
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band Break Out Classics and Fresh Tracks at Benefit Rehearsal Gig
Fall Music Preview: Bruce Springsteen

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Song Stories

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Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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