I grew up in Springsteen Country, also known as the Jersey Shore (Monmouth County to be precise), in the quiet little hamlet of Belmar… on Tenth Avenue… two blocks down from E Street. Yes, a very Bruce stretch or road, thunderous if you will, teenagers are constantly racing up and down the street. My throat hurts from yelling at them.
False rumor has it that Bruce once lived/practiced near or on one of these streets and that is why we have this grand memorial on Tenth and E.
Sometimes my really large friend Rick will get drunk and pick up the fully-functioning Fender Esquire (no, it’s not a Telecaster) and play few songs from Greetings. It’s a ton of fun.
Unlike 95% of the local population, I was was not a Springsteen fan growing up. I was into The Who and The Clash and then fully immersed in punk. Bruce was kind of the enemy, along with the Grateful Dead, and the Dancing in The Dark period didn’t help win me over. Also, next to bagpipes, a saxophone solo is my least favorite sound a human can emit.
We had a vote in high school for our prom theme and “Jungleland” was the front runner, and even with a huge effort/push/campaign from me and my pal Yazdan, “Love Removal Machine” by The Cult could not unseat the Springsteen classic. He was indeed “The Boss” and ruled both young and old all across our sand-covered land.
Despite my distaste for Bruce Juice, my post Froot Loops band, Butt Face, did perform truly awful covers of “Rosalita” and “Badlands” in Roddy’s Garage. Speaking of, I think I first felt my anti-Boss sentiment starting to wane when the aforementioned Pat Roddy played a bring-the-house-down version of “Rosie” at my wedding. It is now and forever will be one of my favorite Springsteen songs and greatest memories.
While I wasn’t a fan of his music I always liked Bruce, the guy. Many people I know have met him and have said good things like, “He’s really nice.” and “He saved my dog from drowning.” I also always admired his winning smile, his bandana collection and enviable biceps. He probably does a lot of low weight/high rep dumbbell workouts.
As I got older and less stubborn in my very narrow musical tastes, I warmed up to his music and now enjoy/sing along to numerous popular and deep cuts off his first six records. I’m listening to “For You” right now and getting a little weepy.
Listen, I’m still punk as f**k (looking into buying an affordable and safe minivan) and I still find a lot of his songs very corny and some of his stage stories and antics downright hokey, but I see and appreciate the joy he brings to my friends with his ridiculously interminable shows and it makes me happy.
I’m trying to buck the “older and crankier” trend.
That said, I still LOVE to make fun of him.
In the 48 songs where Springsteen mentions a factory, 11 of them are actually about a Cheesecake Factory.
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) January 11, 2015
Bruce is in Philly. Hope he plays
– Streets of Philadelphia
– Hoagie Heart
– For Youse
– Meeting Across the Wooder
– The E Street Scrapple
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) February 12, 2016
– Because M Night
– She’s The Jawn
– I’m a Flyer
– Wawa on a Sunny Day
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) February 13, 2016
New Jersey News Hurricane Traffic Advisory: Please avoid Highway 9, it’s jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive. #hurricane
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) August 27, 2011
“Show a little faith, there’s magic in the night…”
Oh Bruce, you’re so sweet
“You ain’t a beauty, but hey you’re alright…”
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) April 17, 2016
Hey, how about ending it with “I’m a cool rocking daddy in the U.S.A.”
Very cool and very rocking, Bruce!
Perfect! Thanks, Clarence.
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) January 7, 2015
My two favorite Springsteen cover bands are probably Glory Daves and The Mighty Mighty Boss Clones.
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) March 12, 2014
When you put out something big you know the garbage men should not take but they do anway. pic.twitter.com/0krq4zWPoD
— Jeff Lyons (@usedwigs) August 31, 2016