"Writing about yourself is a funny business.... But in a project like this, the writer has made one promise: to show the reader his mind. In these pages, I've tried to do this." (Bruce Springsteen, from the audio of Born to Run)
In 2009, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed at the Super Bowl's halftime show. The experience was so exhilarating that Bruce decided to write about it. That's how this extraordinary autobiography began.
Over the past seven years, Bruce Springsteen has privately devoted himself to writing the story of his life, bringing to this audio the same honesty, humor, and originality found in his songs. He describes growing up Catholic in Freehold, New Jersey, amid the poetry, danger, and darkness that fueled his imagination, leading up to the moment he refers to as "The Big Bang": seeing Elvis Presley's debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. He vividly recounts his relentless drive to become a musician, his early days as a bar-band king in Asbury Park, and the rise of the E Street Band. With disarming candor, he also tells for the first time the story of the personal struggles that inspired his best work and shows us why the song "Born to Run" reveals more than we previously realized.
Born to Run will be revelatory for anyone who has ever enjoyed Bruce Springsteen, but this book is much more than a legendary rock star's memoir. This is a book for workers and dreamers, parents and children, lovers and loners, artists, freaks, or anyone who has ever wanted to be baptized in the holy river of rock and roll. Rarely has a performer told his own story with such force and sweep. Like many of his songs ("Thunder Road", "Badlands", "Darkness on the Edge of Town", "The River", "Born in the U.S.A.", "The Rising", and "The Ghost of Tom Joad", to name just a few), Bruce Springsteen's autobiography is written with the lyricism of a singular songwriter and the wisdom of a man who has thought deeply about his experiences.
Author bio: Bruce Springsteen has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the New Jersey Hall of Fame. He is the recipient of 20 Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, and the Kennedy Center Honors. He lives in New Jersey with his family.
©2016 Bruce Springsteen (P)2016 Simon & Schuster Audio
among the best of musician memoirs
...a long ago aspiring songwriter, i wondered why i never 'connected'...but in revealing the many sides of his personality....from the dysfunction and insecurities to his honest belief that he knew he was special and the stoic confidence that came with it, he opened my eyes to the true dynamics of the really few great success stories of the amazing music makers of the 1950's, 60's. 70's and 80's and understanding that unmatched era in time was built by people who found they were gifted with the ability to take the feelings they gained from an early age and fight as hard as necessary to output what they held so strongly inside.
Bruce was able to explain that undeniable connection to focused music self-confidence and never stop pushing forward until the hard work paid off, slowly but surely. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the story being told by Bruce and found myself a little surprised by the eagerness i felt to continue listening...since my interests were always musicians who came before him. It will inspire me to also go back and listen to more of his music.
Not a natural fan of Bruce Springsteen I was recommended this by Amazon so I listened to the free extract - from that moment I was hooked. I purchased the audio book and continued to listen to this fascinating story of Springsteen's life, family, loves, mishaps and incredible journey through the rock n roll years up to the present day. I loved it.
What a book, what a writer! Bruce Springsteen is a towering talent and personality. His gift when playing live is making the listener feel he is taking to them alone. As a narrator he does the same thing.
I'm a long time fan and have read a lot about my hero,but this book showed what the others couldn't....the man.
It helped me realise similarities in my childhood.
No, I don't think I'm like him. I am me, but maybe a Celtic gene is shared the unspoken causes so much damage.
Thank you Bruce for doing this. You didn't have to.
You could have closed yourself off, but you shared.
You celebrated and you cried and helped me do the same.
Thank you for the music, the lyrics and the band.
Thank you for you.
This is am amazing book a great honest joyful telling the story of one of the best of us, someone driven by desire, passion and love for his craft long may he continue thanks for the music
I was was somewhat sceptical about reading this book (as a fan of 'the boss') as I've always been transfixed in his songwriting,stage performances and many more other characteristics that make Bruce Springsteen 'the boss'. I didn't want to come across something in the book that would draw me away from the image I have built of him throughout my life. That being said I wasn't disappointed, I now feel like a truly know the boss and sympathised in his struggles.
A wonderful read/listen that will leave you happy,sad and most of all entertained!
If not a fan already.......you soon will be!!
I will preface this review by stating that I am a big Springsteen fan, having grown up listening to his music, spurred on by my parents as they followed Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band from the beginning!
However I can honestly say that I had no prior knowledge of his personal life before I listened to this audio presentation.
I have just finished listening to it. And while the majority of the topics covered by this book will no doubt take a few weeks to process, I was left feeling uplifted and closer to a person who's music has followed me through the highs and the lows of my own life.
Hearing Bruce in his own words describe his his hopes & fears, and many demons, gave me a sense of... "Hey this guy is real! He's not telling me what I want to hear, he's confiding in me, spilling his guts!" That takes a lot of inner strength and provides understanding that while he is a multimillion dollar success story, he's also just a man with a dream and a belief that if he sheds blood, sweat & tears he could be that one in a million!!
A great listen to accompany me on my commute, while at rest and when you need a familiar voice telling you it's gonna be ok!
"Me Springsteen's book moved me beyond words..."
I hung on every single word of this well told story, and finished up with tears streaming down my cheeks.
I foolishly never delved into Bruce's songs, (never mind took the time to decipher the complex lyrics), even as he was of my time. Sure I boogied to Born to Run & Tunnel of Love, but I feel like I missed the whole party. Until now, that is.
I'm so thankful that a man like this one exists in the world. Someone willing to go deep, do the hard work required in the development of an authentic self, and in this case, share his experience, and the resulting treasure, with the world. A determined soul, driven to make sense of his imperfect past, then face with courage the painful work of sorting it out for the betterment of his tribe. I want to send this book to every young male I know, in the hopes that it might inform their concept of what it is to be masculine - to be a man.
And FYI Mr Springsteen, your 'long and noisy prayer', has, indeed, rocked my very soul.
Forever grateful for your beautifully told story. You are a national treasure!
"The Boss demonstrates his strong work ethic and dedication to excellence as he tells his story."
I appreciated hearing Bruce tell his story on Audible. He shared deep personal details about his life and the creative process he used to entertain his fans throughout his career. I am a bigger fan now having heard him tell his story. I will listen to his music with fresh insights about the story being told and about Bruce and his band. Reading this book made me want to be a better father. I appreciated Bruce telling us about the positive impact mental healthcare and medicines had in the journey of his family. As a medicinal chemist that pours his heart into his craft to design best in class molecule with a purpose this made me smile. Bruce is the kind of friend I would enjoy sitting around with talking and having a beer. I hope he comes back to Indiana soon. We have a beautiful venue in Carmel called the Palladium and I know there are many that would enjoy an intimate evening with this Mega Rock Star!
What a guy, what a story he has to tell – and how he tells it! With humble admiration for earlier and contemporary legends, Bruce gives you his life story with surprising self-disclosure. Being a long time fan of his music I was certain to listen to his book. Especially since it narrated by himself. Having heard it I can absolutely recommend it to anyone irrespective of musical preferences. This is a story of total devotion, hard work and sacrifices in order to fulfill a dream taking shape in a young boy. I lift my hat and salute him, previous and current members of the E Street Band, there music, The Boss himself and this amazing audio book. No back to the beginning for one more go: One-two-three-four!
I like to listen to biographies of celebrities, and I have read and listened to many. Although I was a fan of Bruce Springsteen, his music didn't blow me over. I liked it, but I didn't go crazy over it. So when I started listening to this biography I thought that would like it.
He tells an incredibly riveting story of his life. He tell it chronologically. He is truthful about his family history, about his Irish/Italian upbringing in New Jersey. He is truthful but respectful of his parents marital problems and the mental illness that runs in his family.
The writing is compelling. His narration is powerful! The story of how he battled his demons to rise from poverty to celebrity, how he used that celebrity to improve awareness and advance support for Vietnam veterans, AIDS patients, racial tensions, etc, is one of the most honest and heartfelt and compelling stories I have ever heard. I have gain a tremendous amount of respect for the man, Bruce Springsteen. He has used his celebrity to shine a spotlight on injustices. Rising as he has from poverty to wealth and fame, he could have easily gone a different way, becoming self indulgent, self important, and pompous! Instead he valued his sobriety, respected yet cared for his band mates, and even strove to maintain a healthy long term marriage and made rearing 3 children his top priority. This was the most inspirational biography I have ever read!
"A dream come true"
Listening to Born to Run was like having Bruce sit in my kitchen and talk. An amazing job, Boss!!!
A soulful, honest account of a flawed human being with an incredible gift and an even bigger heart. Well worth the 18 hours. Do yourself a favor and listen to the albums as you make your way through this journey with the one and only, our national treasure, the Boss, the working man's poet, Bruce Springsteen.
"Copper Beech Trees"
I would recommend this book to anyone. My own family has suffered through generations of serious mental illness and the self medicating addictions that often result. The course of Bruce's life exposed the contrasts of both his God given talent and his genetically inherited affliction. Fortunately for him, he was able to pour his experiences into his work and create something that was timely for many reasons. He was wise to develop relationships that were constructive to his limitations. His choices for bandmates and Patti helped to create the trust and brought him the self confidence to push him through his rough spots. Revealing such a challenging mental illness is a difficult thing. Choosing to seek professional help, and being vulnerable enough to share that with his fans, I hope will teach others to do the same. Love on top of all of this can keep the beech tree soul alive.
His descriptions of growing up in an Irish/Catholic family surrounded by the church and its influences. The fact that he had a good mother in his life was especially fortunate for him. Too many have 2 parents that are unavailable and they slip away unguided and unable to survive on their own.
Not yet. I certainly plan on doing so. I am also very glad that he did this audiobook himself. It takes on a different life when done by the author that a narrator could never grasp. I appreciate that effort very much.
Of course, when his father came to see him before the birth of his first child. That was an incredible gift he gave to Bruce. So incredible that he could find it within himself to give that to Bruce. So many are not capable to give that to themselves much less to those they love.
The second moment that I laughed until I snorted was the fishing trip he went on with his father. His description of his fathers outfit was so hilarious I could picture my own dad in the same thing. Thank you for that.
I know it took Bruce 7 years to write this book. Every single day was worth it. It is not easy to expose yourself down to bedrock as he did. Brian Wilson said that music saved him and it is clear that music and the love of people close to him is saving Bruce. Every day is a gift. I hope he enjoys each one.
"Excellent writing and reading"
Even if you are not a huge Springsteen fan, this book is so rich and filled with musical history as well as his own development as a professional that it should be read. The writing is as powerful as his music and the challenges he overcame to reach his level of professionalism is impressive. Read this book. Learn about music history and Springsteen's odyssey as a musician.
"Soulful, touching, intimate life story."
I am so moved by this touching, intimate revealing biography of Bruce Springsteen. Bruce's lyrical telling of his boyhood and present day life is equal parts poetry , hard work , family trama, and mental disease. I have learned more about myself, by learning more about the Boss.
So beautifully written! I've been serenaded through the stories he has chosen to share. I've always felt that Springsteen has worn his heart on his sleeve, and I've known him through his music. Now I've been updated. Heart still on his sleeve, he continues to touch my soul.
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