Pinned: Top Bruce Springsteen News

 

Bruce Springsteen Eulogizes Clarence Clemons at Private Funeral
Clarence Clemons was a founding member of The E Street Band and Bruce Springsteen's friend for more than four decades.

Bruce Springsteen: Voice of the Decade
Rolling Stone magazine named Bruce Springsteen the voice of the 1980s.  According to the magazine, Springsteen asked what it means to be an American.

Bruce Springsteen backs gay marriage in NJ
Bruce Springsteen calls for equal treatment for his gay and lesbian brothers and sisters.

Bruce Springsteen's Hit Broadway Show Is Headed to Netflix in December
If you can catch Springsteen on Broadway at the Walter Kerr Theatre in New York City, don't worry.  The show is coming to Netflix.

Bruce Springsteen Tweets That He's 'Devastated' Over Tom Petty's Death
Bruce Springsteen said Tom Petty was like a brother.  He also called him a great songwriter and performer.

 

Bruce Springsteen News

'He was a true pioneer': Rolling Stones lead tributes to rock legend Chuck Berry
It was announced late last night that Berry had died, aged 90.

Springsteen tribute act pulls out of Trump inauguration gala 'out of respect for Bruce'
The band were booked to play the gig after playing the 2009 and 2013 galas.

Bruce tells Tubridy he still feels like a 'complete fake' in London interview
It was the first time The Late Late Show travelled for an interview since Gay Byrne went to London to talk to Jane Fonda in 1989.

Bruce Springsteen will be on tomorrow night's Late Late
When Tubser met the Boss.

Sitdown Sunday: Meet the rising star of Germany's Far Right
Grab a comfy chair and sit back with some of the week’s best longreads.

Bruce Springsteen opens up about depression in his new memoir
The singer reveals that the recording of Wrecking Ball in 2012 was one of his lowest points.

The Boss: The Ultimate Bruce Springsteen Driving Playlist
Did you catch him at Croker? Bask in the afterglow here…

Bono did a surprise duet with Bruce Springsteen at his gig in Croke Park last night
The lads!

Bruce Springsteen dropped into his Dublin local this afternoon
He’s wetting the whistle before his final Croker gig tomorrow.

Bruce Springsteen dropped into his Dublin local this afternoon
He’s wetting the whistle before his final Croker gig tomorrow.

Why did some people think the sound was bad at Bruce Springsteen?
Some complained about the sound at Croke Park.

A young girl got to sing and take a selfie on stage with Springsteen in Croker last night
SUCH A BOSS.

The ties that bind: Here's how Bruce superfans get their front row spots
An ultra-democratic system of lists and roll calls means true fans always get the places they deserve.

WATCH: Enda Kenny plays air guitar at Springsteen gig
Kenny is said to be a big fan of The Boss.

Some fans weren't happy about the sound quality at tonight's Bruce Springsteen gig
Some fans reported leaving the concert early due to the sound issues.

 

 

 

Introduction

In early 1974, music critic Jon Landau attended a concert at the Harvard Square Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts. What he saw that night eventually led to a seismic shift in the landscape of popular music.

The concert inspired Landau to write the following iconic line: "I saw rock and roll future, and its name is Bruce Springsteen."

The line is almost as famous as the man it references.

At the time, Springsteen had two unsuccessful albums under his belt. You could have said Springsteen was floundering.

His fortunes were about to change.  Landau, enamored by the performance, became Springsteen's producer and manager. 

Like Elvis Presley and Tom Parker, like The Beatles and Brian Epstein, Springsteen and Landau formed a historic partnership.

Landau's first job as producer was to complete a little album Springsteen had been working on called Born to Run. 

The album dropped on Aug. 25, 1975 and it propelled Springsteen to superstardom. 

The New Jersey-based rocker would go on to sell more than 135 million records. On his mantle are 20 Grammy Awards, a Tony Award, and an Oscar.

He's a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He's received Kennedy Center Honors, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and MusiCares person of the year.

More importantly, Springsteen has inspired countless musicians and generations of fans with his passionate lyrics and dynamic stage presence.

Springsteen is accessible enough for causal rock fans while being challenging enough to impress critics. He's a bona fide legend and one of the greatest talents music has ever known.

 

Early Life

Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen was born Sept. 23, 1949 in Long Branch, New Jersey. He grew up in nearby Freehold Borough. 

His father struggled with steady employment leaving his mother the responsibility of supporting the family. Bruce has two sisters, Virginia and Pamela.

Springsteen was raised Catholic, and for a while, attended a Catholic school. He graduated from a parochial high school where he struggled to fit in. He felt so out of place that he skipped his graduation ceremony.

 

Introduction to Music

When he was seven years old, Springsteen saw Elvis Presley on The Ed Sullivan Show. The performance sparked an interest music.

It wasn't until The Beatles performed on the same program, in 1964, that music became Springsteen's passion.

Soon thereafter he was playing at local venues in the Freehold area.

With the help of Tex and Marion Vinyard, a couple who helped young musicians, Springsteen joined The Castiles.

The band played at higher profile venues in New Jersey and recorded a couple of songs.

 

Pre-Fame

In the late 1960s, Springsteen was one-third of the power trio Earth. For two years, beginning in 1969, Springsteen played with Steel Mill. 

That band included three future members of the E Street Band: Steve Van Zandt, Danny Federici, and Vini Lopez.

Springsteen performed with several groups in the early 1970s.  While national fame eluded him, he did develop a cult following in the northeast.

 

Early Struggles

Springsteen auditioned for John Hammond in 1972. Later that year he was signed to Columbia Records.

Since Hammond discovered Bob Dylan a decade earlier, many at Columbia thought Springsteen was going to follow in Dylan's footstep and cut an acoustic album.

Springsteen had no such intention. He arrived at the studio with the nucleus of what would soon become the E Street Band. 

His debut album, Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J., hit streets in January of 1973. His sophomore effort, The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle, was issued the following September.

Neither album was commercially successful, but both were adored by critics. 

 

Commercial Success

With the help of Landau and guitarist Steve Van Zandt, Springsteen finally achieved commercial success with his seminal album, Born to Run. Released in August of 1975, the opus took 14 months to record. Six of those months were dedicated to the song's title track.

It should be noted that while the album was successful, it peaked at number three on the Billboard 200 (at the time, such a feat was far more impressive than it is today), the album's two singles "Born to Run" and "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" sputtered on the singles chart. Nonetheless, almost every track of Born to Run was played on the radio.

 

The Late 1970s

A legal battle with his former manager kept Springsteen out of the recording studio. Instead, he toured extensively and established himself as rock's best performer.

His follow up to Born to Run was released in 1978. Darkness of the Edge of Town failed to match the success of its predecessor, but it still managed to peak at number five on the Billboard 200. 

The album was a departure from Springsteen's earlier works. Musically, his songs were more compact and tighter. Lyrically, Springsteen began to tackle political and social issues.

 

The River and Nebraska

Springsteen finally reached the top of the charts in 1980 with his oeuvre The River. The number one album also produced Springsteen's first number one single, "Hungry Heart."

The success waned for his next album, Nebraska. Springsteen had recorded a bunch of songs with the hopes of reworking them in the studio with The E Street band.

His producer, Jon Landau, realized the demos Springsteen recorded were the most effective versions of the songs.

 It was decided to shelf the recordings made with The E Street Band and release the demos as the album.

The Nebraska sessions did produce several songs that made Springsteen's next album and were eventually recorded with The E Street Band. That next album was Born in the U.S.A.

 

Born in the U.S.A.

Born in the U.S.A. was released in 1984 and has since sold more than 30 million copies. It's one of the greatest rock albums of all-time and Springsteen's seminal work. 

The album contains several hit songs including "Dancing in the Dark," "Cover Me," "I'm on Fire," and "Glory Days." 

The album's title track is one of the most misunderstood songs in rock history. Many felt it was a patriotic, or even jingoistic, track.

Further examination of the lyrics, however, reveal a far more nuisance song that paints a less-than-positive picture of the American dream.

Springsteen wrote the song to bring attention to the shambolic treatment of Vietnam veterans.

Born in the U.S.A. marked the zenith of Springsteen's popularity. He finished the decade by releasing Tunnel of Love (1987) and touring extensively.

In July of 1988, Springsteen played for 300,000 in East Germany. 

While it's obviously hyperbole, there are pundits who believe the concert helped expedite the fall of the Berlin Wall.

 

1990s

The last decade of the 20th century was tumultuous for Springsteen. The high points were his marriage to Patti Scialfa in 1991, winning an Academy Award for "Streets of Philadelphia" in 1994, and being inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999.

The low points, at least relative to his career, were the three studio albums he released in the nineties: Human Touch, Lucky Town, and The Ghost of Tom Joad. 

Springsteen launched a small-venue, solo acoustic tour to support The Ghost of Tom Joad. During the tour, Springsteen had to constantly ask fans to remain silent during his performance.

 

21st Century

In the 21st century, Springsteen settled into the role of rock's elder statemen with aplomb.  He became more politically active, an out-spoken proponent for several liberal causes, and a champion for Asbury Park, New Jersey. 

This new found activism lost him the honorific of "working class hero," but did bolster his hardcore base and earn him new, younger fans.

The 21st century also saw Springsteen release a string of number one albums: The Rising (2002), Devils & Dust (2005), Magic (2007), Working on a Dream (2009), Wrecking Ball (2012), and High Hopes (2014).

The only studio opus that didn't reach number one was 2006's We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions.  Nonetheless, the work won a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Folk Album.

In autumn of 2017, Springsteen hit the Great White Way.  Springsteen on Broadway, which included musical performances, readings from his autobiography, and spoken-word remembrances, was originally slated for an eight-week run. 

It was so successful that it was extended three times.

 

His Nickname "The Boss"

How did Springsteen get the nickname "The Boss?"

Back when Springsteen was playing nightclubs, he took it upon himself to collect the band's wages from owners and managers and distribute the funds to his fellow musicians.

This tendency, along with his fondness for the game of Monopoly, earned him rock's most famous sobriquet.

 

Trivia

  • Springsteen purchased his first guitar for $18.95.
  • Springsteen was drafted into the United States Armed Forces but his behavior and health (he suffered a concussion in a motorcycle accident) made him unfit to serve.
  • Springsteen was once in a band called Dr. Zoom & The Sonic Boom.
  • Bruce's sister, Pamela, is a photographer.  Her images were used on several of Springsteen's albums.
  • Before acquiring the nickname "The Boss," Springsteen was known as "Doctor."
  • President Ronald Regan once referenced Bruce Springsteen in a political speech.
  • In the same week in 1975, Springsteen appeared on the covers of Time and Newsweek. 
  • Actress Courteney Cox appeared in the video to "Dancing in the Dark."
  • Springsteen lent his talents to the song "We are the World" but declined to play at Live Aid.
  • Springsteen's box set, Live/1975–85, was the first box set to debut at number one on Billboard 200.
  • In 2009, Springsteen played at the halftime show of Super Bowl XLIII.
  • In 2012, in Helsinki, Springsteen performed for more than four hours.  That doesn't include a 35-minute acoustic set he performed before his main show.
  • In 2014, Springsteen made his acting debut in the television show Lilyhammer.

 

 

 

 

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