Bruce Springsteen Bday Edition: Steel Mill Live, 1970

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We love Bruce Springsteen here, with nary a condition or a reservation. He’s that kind of an artist and that kind of guy. See also his thoughts on Donald Motherfucking Trump (his birth name) as previewed by Rolling Stone’s Brian Hiatt in what is sure to be a revelatory interview soon to be published.

He is also nice. Bruce. And Brian, but today is Bruce’s 67th birthday and so take an hour and nineteen minutes to check this out: A nice recording of Bruce and his pre-E Street Band band Steel Mill, back when he was still in guitar hero mode, playing live for a whole lot of happy Monmouth College students. He was 20 years old at the time. ‘Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ’ was two years away. ‘Born to Run’ was three years from there.

Springsteen writing on ‘Bruce’

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I’m as eager to read Bruce Springsteen’s memoir Born to Run as anyone. And it’s nice to see he’s still interested in the one I wrote about him — Bruce is just beneath the left side of his notebook, by his left knee.

Talking Springsteen on NYC’s WNET-13

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This cool story about Bruce and “The River” and the new tour aired originally a few months back, but now they’ve freshened it up to coincide with the new run of shows in the Meadowlands. It’s cool! Full disclosure: I screw up my recitation of the key first line of ‘Racing In the Streets,’ but let’s call it a momentary brain fail. A ’69 Chevy. I knew that.

 

 

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BRUCE sightings: The Vatican, NPR and Jake Clemons’ book bag

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Some fun/exciting developments on the BRUCE front. And Dec 20 seems like the most perfect day to bring it up — it’s the 35th anniversary of the first Springsteen show I ever attended, at the Seattle Center Arena on December 20, 1978.

A stand-out night for me, and when I described the experience to Clarence Clemons in early 2011, and got to the part where my pal Bill Becker and I were hanging over the railing bellowing Bruuuuce! above where he and Bruce were walking arm-in-arm back to the dressing rooms Clemons nodded excitedly, as if some long mystery had just been clarified: “Ohhhh, that was you guys!” Didn’t crack a smile either, even after I started to laugh.

But anyway.

This week’s issue of The New Yorker features James Carroll’s profile of Pope Francis, which includes this surprising revelation about Antonio Spadero, one of the Vatican’s top Jesuits and editor of La Civiltà Cattolica:

“Before leaving Spadaro’s office, I looked again at the book on his table: it was “Bruce,” a biography of Bruce Springsteen. The book next to it—the breadth of a Jesuit’s interest!—was “Ratzinger: Opera Omnia.”

So that’s something.

Meanwhile, the Minneapolis Star Tribune had a quick chat with Jake Clemons recently, who revealed that he’s been filling in his knowledge of his employer by reading you-know-which biography. Jake added some nice thoughts about the book but even I’m not narcissistic enough to re-type them and put them here, so I’ll just say: Thanks, Jake.

Lastly: I’ll be on National Public Radio’s “Here & Now” at some point after Christmas talking about “Born to Run” and that sheet of lyrics that sold at auction for nearly $200,000 the other day. I’ll post the airdate when I hear it, but also check yer local listings.

BRUCE at Seaside, Oregon Public Library, Nov 21

Don't be late!

Don’t be late!

The weather’s great in Oregon today — blue skies, gentle breezes and okay so it’s pretty cold but hey, it’s nearly December so just bundle up and stop yer whining — so come on out to the coast and we’ll talk Springsteen at the Seaside Public Library.

The action starts at 7 pm and runs for 90 straight minutes. Readings, questions, answers, all in the key of ‘B.’ See what I did there? With the ‘B’?

So you should come. We’ll hang out.