I used to consider myself a big fan of Bruce Springsteen and his music. Now I realize the term “big” is relative.
In the course of researching the eBook about people who follow his career, I have run into several who put me to shame with the depth of their devotion. During the process of interviewing these fans, I was often pointed to another fan who turned out to be an even bigger fan.
I understand that there is always someone out there who has more memorabilia or has been to more concerts. This is not a contest. One of the objectives of my eBook and this website is to chronicle some of the stories of Bruce’s fans. Some are extreme fans with many stories, others are casual fans with an interesting story.
For many years, New Jersey had “flown under the radar” in the rock and roll industry. Then Bruce burst on the scene and a “Jersey Shore” sound was ascribed to his music. That sound is hard to define without understanding what makes the New Jersey shore special and without actually experiencing the shore, nearly impossible. Some of these fans have real tangible Shore connections.
My eBook, Springsteen: A Notion Deep Inside is a personal chronicle of growing up watching the arc of Bruce’s career and I include as many of those fans who have their own personal stories to share as I can. This website was designed as a companion to the eBook.
Nearly everyone I talk to about Bruce has their own personal Bruce story. Most books discuss the lyrics. I got tired reading those type of books; I wanted to hear the stories. Getting everything into the book is an impossible and daunting challenge given the restraints of publishing, even with the advantages now enjoyed with digital production.
Stories about Bruce fall into several loose categories.
Many revolve around the quest to obtain tickets because, if getting tickets was easy, there would be little point in relating the incident.
In the course of my interviews, when I thought that I heard them all, along comes that person with a uniquely strange incident or happenstance and that light bulb goes off in my head. That story is going in the book.
There are some people who do not like Bruce. I think those are people who don’t understand him and maybe don’t like real rock ‘n roll. In getting people to explain why they follow him devotedly—one person interviewed said it approached a healthy obsession—I think they can address what those non-believers don’t understand.
I do understand that some people will never like Bruce for the simple reason that it annoys them that other people think Bruce and his music is so wonderful. That’s a shame because they are missing so much.