springsteen headshot Rock Flashback: The Boss Opens For The Beach Boys

(Getty Images/Pascal Le Segretain)

Here’s one of the stranger concert bills you’re ever going to run across. On a couple of [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Beach Boys [/lastfm]dates in April 1973, their opening act was [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Bruce Springsteen[/lastfm]. What we’ve been able to piece together about the shows follows the jump.

The April shows were part of Springsteen’s Greetings From Asbury Park tour, which had kept Springsteen and the band on the road almost continuously since December 1972. They’d had a few days off at the beginning of April before heading to Norfolk, Virginia, for a show at the Scope Arena on the 7th. The fabulous Killing Floor database of Springsteen shows doesn’t have the setlist for that particular show, although they note that it’s likely, since Norfolk is the hometown of [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Clarence Clemons[/lastfm], that the Big Man was prominently featured.

Four days later, Springsteen and the Beach Boys were at the Omni in Atlanta, where a third band, [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Mother’s Finest[/lastfm], opened the bill. The show wasn’t a big draw. The Omni seated 16,000 for concerts, but only about 3,000 tickets were sold. The promoter took a bath, but based on what we know about Springsteen, however, those 3,000 people most likely got their money’s worth.

Here’s Springsteen doing the Beach Boys’ “When I Grow Up to Be a Man” during a 1985 performance in Ireland.


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