Bruce Sprinsteen’s visit to the Stambaugh Auditorium on January 12, 1996 was a pretty big deal not only locally, but nationally. Springsteen was supporting The Ghost of Tom Joad album released on November 21, 1995 on that subdued theater tour. The Stambaugh show was the centerpiece of the tour as he would perform “Youngstown” in front of the people who the song was about. From what I remember, there was plenty of media coverage to go around as critics and journalists from around the country descended on Youngstown to frame Springsteen’s appearance around the wreckage of the long closed steel mills. The above clip was shown on the CBS Evening News. Even to this day, I’m quite surprised that they showed the whole song.
During the visit, city leaders took 46-year-old Springsteen on the tour of the steel mill ruins (including “Jenny”) and he met with people who were a part of the book which inspired the song. Tickets, which were $30, sold out in minutes at the end of December. I don’t remember any advertising for the show, but the promoter didn’t really need any.
Setlist included: Ghost Of Tom Joad, Adam Raised A Cain, Straight Time, Highway 29, Darkness On The Edge Of Town, Murder Incorporated, Mansion On The Hill, Sell It And They Will Come, Brothers Under The Bridge, Born In The USA, Dry Lightning, Spare Parts, Youngstown, The Promised Land, Sinaloa Cowboys, The Line, Balboa Park, Across The Border, Does This Bus Stop At 82nd Street, This Hard Land, Streets Of Philadelphia, Galveston Bay, No Surrender, My Best Was never Good Enough.
WHAT THE SHOW SOUNDED LIKE: Here’s a link where you’ll able to download the whole concert (click the green button).