Dr. J's Blog

Rock and Roll History, News & Views

Springsteen Pt. 4 - Darkness & The River

by Gary Johnson 

While the depositions, motions, and hearings over his contract with Mike Appel dragged on for well over a year, Bruce Springsteen continued to write new songs. After seeing Elvis Presley perform at the Spectrum in Philadelphia in the spring of 1977, he wrote "Fire" for his first rock and roll idol. Sadly, Elvis died that summer before Springsteen could send him the demo. Instead, the song was given to neo-rockabilly singer Robert Gordon after Springsteen saw him perform at a gig with Link Wray.

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Springsteen Pt. 3 - Born To Run

by Gary Johnson

Although sales of “The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle” album remained slow, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band continued to perform live to great reviews. Music critic Jon Landau wrote a highly influential review after seeing a performance at the Harvard Square Theater in Boston, and it included this soon-to-be-famous quote: “I saw rock and roll’s future, and its name is Bruce Springsteen. On a night when I needed to feel young, he made me feel like I was hearing music for the first time”.

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Springsteen Pt. 2 - Greetings From Asbury Park

by Gary Johnson

Bruce Springsteen's road to recording his first album had many twists and turns. He had met Virgil "Tinker" West, owner of the Eastern Challenger Surfboard Company at The Upstage. Tinker started managing Child, and after moving out of the old family home in Freehold, Bruce began living at the surfboard factory in Asbury Park and using it as a rehearsal space for the band. Child was basically a bar band that played some original music along with covers.

Read more: Springsteen Pt. 2 - Greetings From Asbury Park