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Bruce Springsteen says 2024 set list will change, promises wider song selection

After restarting his world tour, the Boss assures fans that his song selection will be more flexible than last year.

The Boss is back — and he's ready to guard his fans' dreams and visions.

Earlier this week, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band rebooted their world tour, following a pause that began last fall due to Springsteen's health concerns. And there's more good news: The set list is going to be a lot more flexible this go-round.

When Springsteen launched his first tour in more than five years in 2023, one aspect of it was met with disappointment by fans. Diehard listeners regularly attend multiple Springsteen shows in a single city because of his long tradition of changing up the set list every night. But the Only the Strong Survive tour seemed to change course, with the Boss and his band playing the same tracks night after night (with a small amount of variation).

Now it seems he's changed his tune. Calling into E Street Radio, the SiriusXM radio channel dedicated to all things Springsteen, he revealed to host Jim Rotolo that they're going with a different approach in 2024.

<p>Jamie McCarthy/Getty</p> Bruce Springsteen

Jamie McCarthy/Getty

Bruce Springsteen

"We're approaching it like it's a new tour," Springsteen said. "There will be some things from last year's tour that will hold over, some of my basic themes of mortality and life and those things, you know, I'm going to keep set."

But, he continued, "I think I'm gonna move around the other parts of the set a lot more, so there'll be a much wider song selection going on. So we're looking at it like, you know, it's a little bit of the old tour, but we're looking at it like a new tour."

During the conversation, Springsteen also elaborated on why his peptic ulcer disease, which he was diagnosed with last fall, forced him to cancel two September shows before ultimately rescheduling all the tour stops through the end of the year.

"When I had the stomach problem, one of the big problems was I couldn't sing," he said. "You sing with your diaphragm. My diaphragm was hurting so badly that when I went to make the effort to sing, it was killing me. I literally couldn't sing at all, and that lasted for two or three months, along with just a myriad of other painful problems."

Springsteen even admitted that there was a period of time when he feared he might not be able to return to live performance. "During the course of it, before people told me, 'Oh no. It's gonna go away and you're gonna be okay,' you're thinking like, 'Hey, am I gonna sing again?'" he said. "This is one of the things I love to do the best, the most, and right now I can't do it. It took a while for the doctors to say, 'Oh no. You're gonna be okay.' At first nobody was quite saying that, which made me nervous. At the end of the day, I found some great doctors and they straightened me out."

Springsteen and the E Street Band currently have tour dates scheduled through the end of November, including a summer leg in Europe.

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