David Remnick's profile of Bruce Springsteen in The New Yorker is a must read. It could take about an hour to get through it but it's well worth the time.
The piece offers a more frank description of Bruce's relationship with his father, Doug Springsteen, than we're used to reading and this aspect of the piece has grabbed a lot of headlines - along with Bruce's battles with depression.
But there's a lot more to the piece, including candid insights to the band's dynamic (Max Weinberg refers to himself and the band members as 'employees' and Patti Scialfa says her place in the band is more figurative than musical) as well as a transcendental description of Bruce's stage performances that brings you about as close to the real thing as possible. There's also the less told story of original drummer Vini Lopez along with more familiar tales of Bruce's original manager Mike Appel and Bruce writing "Dancing in the Dark."
I was happy to see that the piece bolsters two of my long standing suspicions: that Bruce has had cosmetic surgery and that he's never done drugs. But more than anything, Remnick articulates my appreciation for Bruce in a way that I've never been able to...
Thousands of fans, many of whom had been waiting outside since morning, were allowed to enter the stadium grounds at six o’clock for a show that would not begin until ten. I noticed a few young Spaniards carrying a sign, in English, reading, “Bruce, Thanks for Making Our Lives Better.” I tried to imagine a sign like that for—whom? Lou Reed? AC/DC? Bon Jovi? (“Richie Sambora, Thanks for making our lives better.” Doubtful.) The ultra-sincere interchange between Springsteen and his fans, which looks treacly to the uninitiated and the uninterested, is what distinguishes him and his performances.