-- 24 August 2002 --

2002 Index


DATE: 24 August 2002
VENUE/SHOW: The Birchmere
LOCATION: Alexandria, VA, USA


Set 1:
  • A Dream Like Mine
  • Lovers In A Dangerous Time
  • Anything, Anytime, Anywhere
  • The Trouble With Normal
  • When You Give It Away
  • All The Ways I Want You
  • Tokyo
  • Open

    Set 2:
  • Rumours Of Glory
  • My Beat
  • Put It In Your Heart
  • Trickle Down
  • Call It Democracy
  • Postcards From Cambodia (first known performance of this song)
  • Last Night Of The World
  • World Of Wonders


  • If I Had A Rocket Launcher
  • Mama Just Wants To Barrelhouse All Night Long
  • Wondering Where The Lions Are
  • Pacing The Cage
  • Messenger Wind


    Submitted by Dave Wilber, Melissa Brecht, and Ruth White.

    Melissa: The show was amazing. He sounded fantastic. He joked and talked with the audience and responded to their comments. The Birchmere was an intimate setting to see Bruce play. It was the second time I've seen him and the second time on this tour and loved both shows. I wish I could see him again. My boyfriend, only a casual listener, went along and left a true fan.

    Ruth: Seated up front, a man joined us who said he was at Bruce's high school for one year (but he said Bruce wouldn't remember him). He said
    lots of folks in high school played guitar, but Bruce made a career of it. He also tells us Bruce has an uncle who got tired of explaining his last name and changed the spelling of it to something like Coburn.

    Bruce said he was grateful to be doing an entire evening show after many festivals (he was scheduled at the Philadelphia Folk Festival the night before). Luckily for us he seemed to have lots of energy. The crowd (old and new fans) were wild for him, and he responded to the warmth. I would say one of my best shows yet.

    [At one point] Bruce said "you guys are terrific", and his former high school mate yelled "you aren't bad either."

    About Put It In Your Heart: "Here's another of the new ones since the last album. This song is written in the aftermath of 9/11. I felt inarticulate after the actual event, and couldn't write a song like some of the facile songs written right after by some good artists that had some things to say that were not well thought out. I was struck by the thought, engendered in some quarters - Pat Robertson standing and Jerry Falwell sitting - and they were saying this happened because of all you gays and you women who had abortions. F*** you, where's the guy with the gun? Here I was responding like George Bush, just kill the f***ers. I had to think and I thought and I meditated about my reactions to it all."

    About Trickle Down: "I co-wrote this one with Andy Milne, a young jazz pianist in New York. He approached me to collaborate on some
    songs for his band, and they did an album. The band includes a female vocalist and a rapper. And they don't do anything in 4/4 time. After
    being with them it seems like normal to count to 11 instead of 4. But I will simplify it for you all. Most that I play will be in 4/4 but parts are still in 11. This is about the popular economic theory - that if the rich get really, really rich, somehow the rest of us will feel good."

    Here are some of the lyrics: "Picture on magazine - board room... trust me with money and the universe... trickle down will give us all we need. Earphones for the masses and they save you... held out... save the masses... trickle down blood... What used to pass for education... now for ignoramous... sweat shops subjugation... Workfare ...largess around the poor - supertanks ships of fools - trickle down blood - cups held out to catch the bounty - take over- take down - big blood shake down - penalize privatize... privileged supposed to give us the goods... trickle down
    everywhere, trickle down blood.

    About Postcards From Cambodia: "Here's a song I haven't sung in front of humans yet. Someone responsible for this song existing is here in this room. The Vietnam veterans invited me on a trip to Vietnam and Cambodia."

    Bruce asks: "In all the ballyhoo about Elvis, did you hear John Trudell's poem about Elvis? It is worth checking out John Trudell." I found that he
    appeared in Washington DC in the afternoon before Bruce's show. He has a CD called A.K.A. Graffiti Man with a title on it call Baby Boom Che, a Rykodisc release.

    Someone asked Bruce where he was going next. He said: "I'm going home. There is some talk of Shanghai in November but I'm not sure it will happen. We don't want to cut into my studio time. I had a long dry spell before I wrote these new songs, so I am anxious to get them on a record.

    [Towards the end,]the audience wanted more. Some yelled that the night was young. Bruce replied: "The night may be young, but I'm not."


    FORMAT: Audience
    QUALITY: Very good

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    2002 Index

    This page is part of The Cockburn Project, a unique website that exists to document the work of Canadian singer-songwriter and musician Bruce Cockburn. The Project archives self-commentary by Cockburn on his songs and music, and supplements this core part of the website with news, tour dates, and other current information.