Tag: Gaslight Anthem

Brian & Bruce

Check out this video of Brian Fallon of Gaslight Anthem signing “No Surrender” with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, from Bruce’s new Hyde Park DVD. I’ve written about Gaslight recently, and anybody who knows me, or maybe follows me on Twitter, knows of my fascination with and admiration for Springsteen. My college girlfriend introduced me to Springsteen’s music, as well as Stephen King’s writing, two debts I can never repay. Obviously both men are consummate storytellers, most often choosing to chronicle average lives.

More than just a great song, this video intrigues me from the standpoint of watching Brian’s joyous face as he gets to perform with one of his musical influences, maybe even one of his idols. There are moments in life that tell you what you’re doing is right, that you’re doing what you’re meant to be doing. This performance seems to me to be one of them.

I had that kind of moment when I got to work with Jim Starlin, Bernie Wrightson and Walter Simonson on respective projects. With Jim, it was a Green Lantern issue and a Hellboy: Weird Tales story. With Bernie, Batman vs. Aliens and the still-unpublished Batman-Solomon Grundy story. With Walter, an issue of The Path. Those jobs will always mean the world to me.



Pearl Jamming

Something to entertain you while I’m buried under deadlines for a few more days. The Gaslight Anthem was on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last night, and played “Boxer” from the new album, “American Slang.” Great album, but you knew I was going to say that anyway. As a web-only bonus for the show, Gaslight covered Pearl Jam’s “State of Love and Trust.” Check it out.

the original video and the late night with jimmy fallon blog post

This might only be of interest to me, but Jimmy Fallon and my wife went to the same high school a few years apart.



Writing by Gaslight

So we’ve already established that on Wednesday you’re gonna run off to the comic shop and pick up Magdalena #2 and Witchblade TPB Vol. 7, right? But there’s something else you need to go pick up today: “American Slang,” the new album by The Gaslight Anthem, which is my favorite band in a long time. Should be your favorite band too.

I write with music on. Always. I’m actually writing this with music on. I need the background noise. For whatever reason, my concentration goes to hell when there’s silence; my mind fixates on the quiet, instead of drifting off to some creative place. So there’s always music, and I’m always searching for more music that will inspire.

Troy Peteri, who was a letterer at CrossGen and now letters everything from Top Cow, shares much the same musical taste that I have. We both worship at the shrine of Springsteen and the temple of U2, as well as the church of the Clash. I think we both ended up discovering The Gaslight Anthem at about the same time, and trading notes with each other. I think my first exposure was a short video of Gaslight’s Brian Fallon covering Springtseen’s “Backstreets.” Loved it. Had to find out more about this guy and his band, which led to picking up “The ’59 Sound,” the then-current album. It was like a record cut by the bastard sons of Springsteen and Petty and Joe Strummer, playing songs about real people living real lives. Songs about broken dreams and bittersweet memories and a glimmer of hope on a dark highway.

The songs tell stories, which has always been my favorite kind of music. The songs breathe life into characters who feel real, which is what any storyteller (me included) wants to do. I’m more interested in the lives of ordinary people, rather than extraordinary ones. That’s probably why Kyle Rayner held more interest for me than Hal Jordan. Not that I didn’t like Hal’s character; I did and I do. But I’m more drawn to the “regular guy,” not the fearless test pilot. There are a lot of regular guys populating The Gaslight Anthem’s songs.

The ’59 Sound” has taken its place among my favorite albums. “American Slang” will most likely do the same. But you don’t have to take my word for it. You can listen to “American Slang” in its entirety on NPR here.

You can also listen to The Gaslight Anthem’s terrific set at last weekend’s Bonnaroo Festival on NPR here.

Check ’em out. If you like what I do, I think you’ll like what they do.


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