Thursday, June 21, 2018

Cover Spotlight - "I'm On Fire" by the Staves



Tip of the hat to my wife for this one.  She has been raving about the Staves for some time now, and honestly, I wasn't paying much attention.  Then she said, "They do a cover of 'I'm On Fire'," and I was all ears!  Gotta say, it's pretty good!  Give it a listen, and get in touch with your feminine side.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

The Gaslight Anthem's The '59 Sound - 10 Years Later


This week, the Ringer published an oral history on Gaslight Anthem's seminal album The '59 Sound, which you can read by clicking here.  It is long, but definitely worth the read, featuring quotes by our website's namesake.  I've written about the Gaslight Anthem many times on this website, and the article addresses the elephant in the room: their connection to Springsteen.  Being soulful rockers from Central Jersey, the comparisons were frequent.  But, it was both a blessing and a curse: while it helped expand their audience, it brought an avalanche of hype and expectations from the group going forward.  While I consider their albums American Slang and Handwritten to be classics, you could see how they were still under pressure to deliver a more mainstream, crossover success.  Anyway, the Gaslight Anthem are currently reunited and on tour, celebrating the 10 year anniversary of this album, and, yes, I do have my tickets for later this summer.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Great Moments in Springsteen Cinema History: Ready Player One



If you haven’t heard, Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of Ready Player One is chock full of 1980s pop culture. This includes a host of instantly recognizable Top 40 pop songs from the decade. But then suddenly, surprisingly, amidst the traditional tunes, appears none other than Bruce Springsteen’s “Stand On It” – a lesser known b-side to "Glory Days" that was apparently released on the soundtrack to the Danny Devito comedy Ruthless People before also appearing on Tracks.

How did Spielberg choose this song – of all Springsteen songs, of all '80s songs – to feature in the movie? There’s plenty of evidence of Spielberg’s appreciation for the Boss. Whether it’s red carpet photo bombing, opening night seats at Springsteen on Broadway or vacations in Naples, Italy (with Daniel Day-Lewis in tow – imagine the conversations the three of them were having!). I like to imagine this was Spielberg’s first chance after decades of admiration to fit a Springsteen song into one of his movies, and he decided to use it as an opportunity to bring more attention to one of his personal favorites. Perhaps “Hungry Heart” or “Glory Days” would have felt too obvious for a Springsteen fanboy.

This is the beauty of the Bruce Springsteen catalogue. Beside the iconic pop hits, there’s a treasure trove of decade-specific songs just waiting to be rediscovered. I’d wager that the majority of Ready Player One audience members this past weekend were likely to hear “Stand On It” and recognize it as something distinctly created in the '80s without even noticing it’s Springsteen. Maybe you'd recognize his voice, but it sounds pretty different than his big hits. I like to think a contingent of that audience scrolled through the soundtrack listings and with pleasant surprise, developed a new appreciation for Springsteen.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Springsteen's back...in purse form!

In our never almost-ending quest to bring you all the random Springsteen-ness from across the globe, here is a Springsteen purse:


Found in a random store in New Hope, Pennsylvania, this Springsteen purse stands out among other rock legends such as Kiss, Prince, Queen, and Jack Skellington.  

I did not buy it.  Thanks for reading!

Friday, February 2, 2018

Legends of Springsteen's Legendary Super Bowl Picks!

Sure, this blog is just sputtering along, with only a handful of posts the last six months.  But, never fear!  We're back, with what you've all been craving: our Super Bowl picks!  Let 'er rip:

OB: Patriots 34, Eagles 28 (Overall 3-3)
Rory: Patriots 23, Eagles 20 (Overall 3-3)
Steve: Patriots 45, Eagles 7 (Overall 3-3)

There you have it.  With a combined record of 9-9, you can take those picks to the bank.  Or don't take them.  Let's end with something by quasi-related:


Enjoy the big game!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Hidden Bruce in Bally's Atlantic City!

(Click to embiggen!)

Theme park goers may be familiar with the concept of "Hidden Mickeys" at Disney parks.  Basically, the theme park designers hidden Mickey heads throughout the park, only to be spotted by the most eagle-eyed Disney fanatics.  Well, I think I may have found the first every "Hidden Bruce", in none other than my favorite stomping ground, Atlantic City!

Just look at the glorious mural above!  That, my friends, is located in Bally's, just behind Harry's Oyster Bar, brightening an otherwise dank hallway where casino-goers wait for a shuttle to Harrah's.  This glorious mural/potential back tattoo features many legends of New Jersey enjoying the Atlantic City beach, from Frankie Valli to Shaquille O'Neal.  And, who are those two handsome gentlemen bopping together in the lower left?



Why, it's our boy Bruce, and....Bon Jovi I want to say?  Judging by his appearance (as well as Shaq's Lakers jersey), I'd date this work of art as going back to the late 90s/early 00s.

Either way, I want this hanging on my wall.  And as my permanent Christmas card.

As I've clearly run out of things to write about on this blog, I will keep an eye out for all the "Hidden Bruces" I can find.  You're welcome.