Bruce Springsteen

I know this blog is dedicated to classical music/opera, but I figured that I still should make this post, considering it’s about one of my favorite musicians of all time. I can’t remember the first time I ever heard Bruce Springsteen sing, but it was probably in junior high. (My love of another famous Jersey singer, Frank Sinatra, was also started in junior high, thanks to Scarp!). Anyways, this past Monday, the Boss came out to Chicago to continue his book tour for his new autobiography, Born to Run. Only 1,200 tickets were sold for about the price of the book, and considering the ticket included a signed copy of his book and a (once-in-a-lifetime) opportunity to meet him in person, it was definitely a really good deal. I left campus right after my classes ended and headed downtown to Books-a-Million in the Loop, conveniently only a block away from where my dad works. (I asked if he wanted to go, considering he’s a fan of Bruce’s as well, but alas, I was on my own.) I thought I got there pretty early, about two hours before the scheduled start time at 12PM, but there were people who started camping out by the bookstore at 6:30AM! There were fans from all walks of life, and it was pretty cool to hear everyone’s stories about Bruce.

Bruce got to the bookstore about thirty minutes early (apparently by Uber), and so the line started moving pretty quickly. Kudos to the Books-a-Million staff for making the event run real smooth- there was no chaos at all and considering there were more than a thousand people waiting to meet the rock legend, it showed the great preparations by all the staff members.

So, what do you say to someone who just won the Presidential Medal of Freedom (awarded last week by President Obama), who has 20 Grammys/an Academy Award/2 Golden Globes/and a bunch of other awards, and whose music is beloved by millions and millions of people all over the world? (Plus, if Bob Dylan could win the Nobel, there’s just as strong of a case for Bruce to win as well…) Although there’s a lot I could’ve said, I ultimately decided to thank the Boss for writing Thunder Road because it’s my favorite song of his and a song that I think really sums up the great musician/writer that he is. The lyrics perfectly convey such a simple, but at the same time, profound scene, and really captures a quintessential American spirit that I think has been greatly overlooked in today’s music. Even though he’s met thousands and thousands of fans for this book tour, when it was my turn to go up and meet him, he talked right to me, same as he did for every single person waiting to meet him, even if it was only for a couple of seconds. I haven’t finished his book yet, but from the couple of pages that I’ve read so far, his prose is poetic, like his lyrics, but is uniquely him, as in you feel as though he’s talking just to you. That is the power of Bruce Springsteen.

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