Sunday, June 19, 2011

Clarence Clemons - The Big Man - Takes His Final Bow

Last night, after suffering from a massive stroke about a week ago, Clarence Clemons died.  He was known by most as Bruce Springsteen's saxophone player and sidekick, but I remember him as a incredibly gentle person who had a huge heart, a bigger smile and kindness that was immeasurable.

The tendency is to remember his by listening to his solo in the Springsteen song Jungleland, but I will first remember his kindness and that big smile:

But Clarence Clemons was also about the music and the emotion he could bring out in people through his saxophone, so a listen to that Jungleland solo, played in New Jersey, is a must.  He had a way of just taking over through his presence and drawing you in.  I mean, as you will see, he just stood there...The Big Man...and you felt "it":

Watching him for the first time at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park I was too young, too brash and too naive to appreciate who he was.  Now, just a few miles away from there, on Father's Day over three decades later, I do.