1970-06-19 String Factory (The), Richmond, VA

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Info & Setlist | Venue

One show, with Steel Mill the sole act on the bill. This venue had previously been owned and operated by Free University under the name "The Center" and Child/Steel Mill had played here several times (see listings). It was sold in March 1970 and re-opened, revamped and under private ownership, in May 1970 as "The String Factory". "Where Was Jesus In Ohio" is Springsteen's response to the May 4, 1970 massacre at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. Performed by Springsteen alone with an acoustic guitar, it's an early example of Springsteen moving away from his band, as his focus switches to solo material over the next few years. While this song was performed solo, the taper confirms this was a Steel Mill show; the band took a break while Springsteen played alone. We have placed this audio here since we understand it was recorded at The String Factory, but it may emanate from the next night, or potentially other unrecorded shows. Brucebase reader, Tom Eure, contacted us about a show at The String Factory he vividly recalled. He remembers Springsteen playing with nothing on but a pair of jeans, in hot, humid conditions while a massive thunderstorm raged outside. The audience were sat on the floor, watching mesmerized as the stage was periodically lit by flashes of lightning. The room was surrounded by large windows, making the light show all the more impressive. The unmistakable sounds of thunder can clearly be heard (as can the audience reaction) during the quiet sections of "Garden State Parkway Blues", suggesting this may be the show that made such an impression on Tom.

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