There have murmurs of discontent of late regarding the announcement of Bruce Springsteen’s Croke Park gigs.
There is no need to detract from what will be a wonderful gig, and a wonderful experience for Springsteen fans old and new.
I was ecstatic when it was announced that 'The Boss' will perform at Croke Park on May 27 – with the possibility of additional dates - as part of 'The River Tour 2016'.
We are blessed to welcome one of the best live performers in the world to Dublin, to a venue that has a capacity of 82,300. Bruce, now 65, is as energetic and powerful as ever, and reviews of 'The River Tour 2016' have been overwhelmingly positive thus far.
Speaking to the Irish Independent, local resident Peter Branagan (60) of Clonliffe Road said;
"We will be very watchful that no attempts are made to exceed the limit of three concerts this year. We are ready to protest again if necessary.”
However, this clearly won’t be necessary.
Only three concerts are allowed at the venue, but there is little chance of Bruce exceeding that quota. It is believed that he will perform on Friday and Sunday night respectively, taking a break in between.
Peter McKenna of Croke Park backed this up in an interview with Newstalk on Friday morning, and revealed that his understanding is that Springsteen will not play the venue on the Saturday night.
When I called the Croke Park Resident office today to discuss this, they opted not to comment on the matter.
The only possible issue connected with this is today’s announcement that Beyoncé will be performing at Croke Park on the 9th of July (tickets, priced from €49.50, will go on sale on February 15 at 9am).
If either Bruce or Beyoncé were to add another night to their respective tours, the maximum of three concerts at Croke Park would be broken, and this could lead to protests and controversy.
However, this seems extremely unlikely.
There has also been consternation over the news that the GAA have had rescheduled two Championship fixtures - Wexford and Kildare's football clash and Wexford and Dublin's hurling match - from that weekend to a week earlier, in order to accommodate the concerts.
In my opinion, this shouldn’t be an issue.
The GAA have provided plenty of notice as to the rescheduling of the games, and this shouldn’t be a major issue for supporters hoping to attend these matches.
The fact is that Croke Park relies on concerts such as this for income, feeds substantial amounts of the money from such events into central funds for distribution to counties and other units of the GAA.
I, for one, intend on purchasing a ticket as soon as they go on sale (on Thursday morning at 9am), and it will be my fourth time to see ‘The Boss’ live. Every time I have seen him, I have been blown away by his immeasurable talent, charisma and energy.
This may be the only time that Bruce ever performs at Croke Park, and it is not to be missed. It is an opportunity for a new generation to be exposed and enthralled by one of the best musicians of all time.
It would be a shame to see anything compromise that golden opportunity.