Is this a first ever? Bruce Springsteen just announced a new tour and a new album to appear in 2012 without issuing one of those Shorefire Media press releases. The message with this delightful, if still rather sketchy news, just showed up on his official website yesterday along with Facebook and Twitter messages. A new album is almost finished, a world tour is being planned, it will be with the E Street Band, and European shows from May to July will be announced this week. Those are the four essential pieces of information that were being presented. Since then, shows in England have indeed been officially announced:
21 June Sunderland, England, Stadium of Light (on sale 3 Dec)
22 June Manchester, England, Etihad Stadium (no on sale date yet)
24 June Isle of Wight, England, Isle of Wight Festival (on sale 25 Nov)
14 July London, England, Hard Rock Calling (on sale 3 Dec)
Most likely, the reason for this unusual announcement by Bruce is that the British, and probably other European festival promotors, needed to announce their lineup now and couldn't wait for Bruce to finish up the details regarding his new album. So for once fans actually have a little time to plan even if we have to wait a few more weeks to hear more about the new album.
The announcement is of course also significant in that it answers the question everybody has been asking since the news of Clarence's death: would the E Street Band continue? The answer, we now know, is YES! If and how Clarence will be replaced still remains to be seen, but apparently the rest of the gang is up for another round of touring.