Donning the cover of this years 14th Annual Light Of Day Festival (LOD), a week-long musical initiative to raise funds and awareness about the fight against Parkinson’s Disease, is a caped super hero soaring through the atmosphere in all his comic book grandeur, and maybe that was symbolic of New Jersey’s favorite son Bruce Springsteen who made his 10th appearance at LOD since the event’s inception back in 2000.
During this birthday bash for Festival Founder Bob Benjamin, the driving force behind this wonderful production that saw more than 40 events play out over the last seven days, taking the stage were such local favorites as Nicole Atkins, who unveiled a series of selections from her forthcoming LP Slow Phaser, as well as quite possibly the best Rock band in the Jersey Shore scene, TheMatt O’Ree Band.
However, this pair of local luminaries was followed by a collection of LOD stalwarts, still as incendiary and energized as ever, including Jesse Malin, Garland Jeffreys, Willie Nile, The Goo Goo Dolls’ Johnny Rzeznik, and Joe Grushecky.
However, all paled in comparison to the appearance of Springsteen, who emerged from the side-stage shadows early in the showcase to join Malin on “Rock N’ Roll Radio”, and Nile on “One Guitar”, before emerging for a full set with Grushecky & The House Rockers as his backing band.
Springsteen and company dazzled with the performance of such classic cuts as “Atlantic City”, “Hearts of Stone”, “Becuase The Night”, and “The Promised Land”, while dropping the world premiere of “Frankie Fell In Love”, which was plucked from his latest LP High Hopes, before closing “Born To Run”, a full ensemble performance of “Light Of Day”, and a Paramount Theatre-wide singalong of “Thunder Road” that chilled the backbone of every patron more than than the icy winds whipping down the boardwalk.
Check out photos from the evening below and stay tuned for more coverage from this past week at LIght Of Day Festival 2014.