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For fans of rock, Bruce Springsteen is the Godfather. His stage presence, high octane energy, catchy guitar riffs and smashing taste in bandanas make him a bona fide rock legend. It’s staggering to think that The Boss will be 67 this year and still rocking the world.
Age is just a number
Next week sees Springsteen head to the UK and Ireland for several tour dates and boy are people excited! He will be touching down in Manchester, Dublin, Glasgow, Coventry then the mighty Wembley Stadium on 5 June for The River Tour, which has already seen him play across Europe and America.
Springsteen is known for giving his all and his shows have sometimes gone on for over three or four hours. You always know that you will get your money’s worth with The Boss! But just what makes him special and how has he kept his legendary status after all of these years?
E Street Band
One of the biggest factors in Springsteen’s success has to be the E Street Band, possibly the greatest ever backing band in the history of rock music. In fact, the band is so great that they even received their own induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2014, 15 years after The Boss himself. The band featured a guitarist called Patti Scialfa who ended up becoming Bruce’s wife in 1991 and of course, who can forget guitarist Steven Van Zandt – a phenomenal musician and also a scene stealer as Silvio in The Sopranos, another Home of Retro favourite.
A man with a moral compass
Bruce Springsteen has also got involved in politics over the years (as we said about Bob Marley in our blog last week) but not in a misguided and annoying way! He has always been honest and spoken his mind whether that has been to endorse Barack Obama during his run for the Presidency, starring in LGBT campaigns or cancelling gigs in support of gay marriage in states where it is outlawed. The Boss just doesn’t give a damn (and has appeared in many sketches on Saturday Night Live and Jimmy Fallon to prove it – look them up on YouTube – hilarious!). You can’t push the big man around. He was apparently so uncomfortable with Columbia’s decision to market him as the “future of rock” that he personally went round the Hammersmith Odeon removing promotional material before the first date on the ‘Born to Run’ tour!
That album has to be one of the reasons why The Boss is still The Boss even now. Forty years on (yep, we feel old!) and it is still quite simply a masterpiece. On the album, Springsteen documented his desire to leave behind his small town life and go out searching for something more – and boy didn’t he do just that! An icon then and an icon now, baby he was born to run!
In the day we sweat it out on the streets of a runaway American dream
At night we ride through the mansions of glory in suicide machines
Sprung from cages out on highway 9,
Chrome wheeled, fuel injected, and steppin’ out over the line
Oh-oh, Baby this town rips the bones from your back
It’s a death trap, it’s a suicide rap
We gotta get out while we’re young
`Cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run