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Born to Run Audiobook

Born to Run

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Audible Editor Reviews

Editors Select, December 2016 - Having grown up in New Jersey, it's not too much of a stretch to say that Bruce Springsteen was something of a spiritual force. His voice is synonymous with a powerful sense of place, and it bears a rugged, scrappy idealism that can make you feel patriotic and subversive at the same time. That's what makes this autobiography, written and performed by The Boss himself, nothing less than magical. It's not simply a story of his path to success or a philosophy of greatness but a marathon concert tell-all wherein he confronts demons of mental illness, poverty, and familial strife. It is nostalgic for a simpler time but urgent in its display of discipline and individuality. Ultimately, Bruce delivers with this audiobook what he has done for nearly five decades with his music: a celebration of the commonplace and the struggles of American life with candor, imagination, and purpose. —Michael, Audible Editor

Publisher's Summary

"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

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Jackie Gravesend, United Kingdom 14/12/2016
    Jackie Gravesend, United Kingdom 14/12/2016 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Unexpectedly engaging...honest and enlightening"
    Where does Born to Run rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    among the best of musician memoirs


    Any additional comments?

    ...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.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JudiH 17/12/2016
    JudiH 17/12/2016 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic heartfelt and eloquently told"

    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.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jacqueline bain 16/12/2016
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    "Inspirational, flawed human with so much humanity and humility and an ego!"

    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.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    My 13/12/2016
    My 13/12/2016 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not a fan? You soon will be! A poetic masterpiece from the boss!"

    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!!

    Pc

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mbwebb46 20/06/2017
    mbwebb46 20/06/2017 Member Since 2013
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    "Brilliant."

    This a must listen. Great story, great delivery. The Boss give it his all, just like all his preformed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    12/06/2017
    12/06/2017 Member Since 2017

    cj_lpl_uk

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    "My first audio book"

    As a long standing fan I read the book and really enjoyed it. I was tempted to get the audio book by the free for one month offer and I'm so glad I did. Hearing the author with his intonations, emphasis and chuckles made it even more enjoyable for me.

    I thoroughly recommended this audio book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip Burford, United Kingdom 10/06/2017
    Philip Burford, United Kingdom 10/06/2017 Member Since 2013
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    "A real 'Brucie Bonus'"

    Don't usually rate rock star biogs, mostly ghosted and self-serving. And I fall into the 'like some of his stuff but not a fanatical fan' category. Heard his interview with Simon Mayo and thought I'd give it a try.This is a marvellous book. He's an honest and powerful writer and narrator, beautiful prose, often poetic and lyrical. I now want to listen to all of his music, beyond the 'Greatest Hits'. Highly recommended, even if you've never ventured beyond 'Born to Run' (the song!).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    GDPolo 07/06/2017
    GDPolo 07/06/2017 Member Since 2015
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    "King Bruce "

    Amazing life, brilliantly narrated by Springsteen himself. Honest, heartwarming and inspiring. Not only for fans of Springsteen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miss 30/05/2017
    Miss 30/05/2017 Member Since 2016
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    "Honest, poignant, entertaining autobiography"

    I am a fan anyway, but I found this to be such a refreshingly honest and profound autobiography, and I wasn't expecting such an intimate account. It is brave and questioning - both of his own life and ones own. Just great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    S S. 28/05/2017
    S S. 28/05/2017 Member Since 2017
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    "One of the best autobiographies I have ever read"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Absolutely - and I have. His story is so honest, such a long road travelled and he is a likeable man


    What did you like best about this story?

    His honesty and humility


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The story of the Boss, told by the Boss


    Any additional comments?

    This autobiography was totally addictive. I could not stop listening, rewinding certain parts as they were so amazing. His whole story compels you to listen. He is a likeable narrator and great storyteller. My only criticism is that I would have liked to listen to more music inbetween chapters

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Tim
    21/12/16
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    "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!

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Ellen O'Brien
    12/12/16
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    "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!

    38 of 43 people found this review helpful
  • Mats
    21/12/16
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    "Absolutely amazing"

    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!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • 80s Kid
    11/12/16
    Overall
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    "Soulful, honest"

    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.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • K. Rooney
    10/12/16
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    "A Reflective Celebration.."

    One of the most satisfying audiobooks I've listened to. You will feel like you're having this intimate, long, endearing, happy, sad and inspired campfire story with Bruce; he pulls no punches along the journey and delivers with heart pounding passion..

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Janet
    Pittsburgh, PA, United States
    17/12/16
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    "Riveting!"

    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!

    12 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Peg
    29/12/16
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    "Copper Beech Trees"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    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.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Born to Run?

    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.


    Have you listened to any of Bruce Springsteen’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    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.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ralph's mother
    Los Angeles, CA United States
    29/12/16
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    "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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • jean d mcmahon
    28/12/16
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    "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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Pamela J
    United States
    28/12/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Such a relief that this was so good!"

    I have to begin by saying I'm a long time Springsteen fan - - I mean since Born to Run first came out - - and I was worried that the person I've listened to for so long would turn out to be a prima dona rock star. What a relief to find that this Jersey boy is still the blue collar poet, over-thinking, heart on his sleeve, gravel voiced, smart man that he is in the very best of his music. I was much more interested in what inspired his music and I wasn't disappointed. This is a great story of a regular guy who worked harder than most to achieve stardom. Good for the Jersey boy.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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