Today Bruce Springsteen turns 60. I think the man deserves a word or two of birthday gratitude, so here goes: Thanks, Boss. Thanks for Darkness on the Edge of Town and The River and Born to Run and Born in the U.S.A. and all the other classic albums too numerous to list here. Thanks for that part at the end of “We Are the World” where you trade lines with Stevie Wonder. Thanks for the best minute of High Fidelity. Most of all, thanks for not giving up — for continuing to make vital music, rock out on stage, and speak out for your principles well after you passed the half-century mark.
I grew up knowing Springsteen’s hits as well as any child of the ’80s, and I remained a casual-to-moderate fan throughout the ’90s, but it was only in college that my girlfriend, a true devotee, helped induct me fully into the Cult of Brooooooce. Lucky for me, that was right when he was hitting his stride with the reunited E Street Band. If Springsteen had retired for good by that point, I would have been stuck combing through his amazing catalog of decades-old material. (Not the worst fate in the world by a long shot.) Instead, he was out there as a middle-aged guy doing some of the best work of his career. I’m happy to say he shows no signs of slowing down any time soon now that he’s hit 60.
Next week, I’ll be seeing Springsteen and the E Street Band live in concert yet again, an experience that never gets old, even if the band’s individual members might. Anyone else planning to attend this tour? ‘Til then, join me in sharing your birthday wishes for Bruce Springsteen in the comments below.
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Photo credit: Tony Nelson/Retna Ltd