The Killers’ surprise guest was NJ icon — can’t you guess?
The Killers huge hit "Mr. Brightside" is about a jealous mind's imagination running away and picturing a love interest with another.
It was no one's imagination running wild Saturday night when the band came back out at Madison Square Garden for an encore and frontman Brandon Flowers talked about being nervous all night. After all, he explained, you always get nervous when your boss shows up.
Not exactly a cryptic clue for what soon came next. That Telecaster and the signature arm flip to say hi to the crowd. Yes, New Jersey's own blue-collar poet laureate, Bruce Springsteen, took the stage with the Killers and did a surprise guest performance launching first into his own "Badlands."
Here's the moment:
They also did The Killers' "A Dustland Fairytale" and Jake Clemons from the E Street Band was even on hand to add sax to "Born To Run."
It's not the first time they've worked together. Flowers joined in on a Bruce show once for "Thunder Road" and Springsteen met up with the band in 2021 in studio to help with a remake of their "A Dustland Fairytale." But this was the first time The Boss jumped in on a Killers live show.
As often happens with Bruce Springsteen pop-up appearances there were social media rumors circulating about the possibility. Unlike so many times fans back in the day would make that pilgrimage to places like The Stone Pony only for it to be a bust, this one paid off.
Some say Flowers emulates a more modern Springsteen sound. Some believe it more strongly than others, leading one guy, Jonathan Delp, to write a hysterical piece for theaudioglow.com where he posits that Brandon Flowers could be the secret love child of a Bruce Springsteen affair.
Even Delp doesn't buy it in the end. You know what I'm not buying any longer? That surprise performances are even surprise anymore. I'm not just talking about Springsteen, who has not only popped up on stage at Paul McCartney shows, Gaslight Anthem shows, U2 shows, etc., he even once joined a street musician.
It was 1988.
That's a younger Bruce Springsteen on a street in Copenhagen who joined a street performer who happened to have an extra guitar that Bruce borrowed. They did "The River," "I'm On Fire" and "Dancing In The Dark."
But these surprise performances are now happening on a regular. Nothing wrong with that. But I can't help but think the bigger surprise these days is when an artist does their show and closes it having brought no one else out. Hopefully, fans haven't come to expect it to the point they feel they don't get their money's worth when it doesn't happen.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.
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