I saw my rock and roll past flash before my eyes. I saw something else: I saw rock and roll’s future and its name is Bruce Springsteen.
– Jon Landau, May 1974.
Warning: Spoiler Alert
Springsteen & I pays homage to a true Rock Icon!
This is a fan’s movie, made by fans about their (and my) rock hero.
Icon and iconic are terms bandied around too much these days – one hit and you’re there, but with Springsteen it was after his third album that he truly moved to iconic status and it’s Born to Run that are my three words to describe Springsteen.
The personal accounts
that form the core of the movie are sometimes corny, sometimes insightful and all heartfelt. The fan moved to tears describing Springsteen’s music, whilst driving his car on a suburban street, at first blush seems over the top, but then I reflected that I can find myself becoming emotional when I watch a clip of Springsteen singing Born to Run or Jungleland or describing seeing Springsteen sing We Take Care of Our Own live.
The personal accounts of fans time on stage with Springsteen are special, particularly as they are followed by the actual concert footage. The Elvis impersonator, a lifelong fan’s story of his goal of being onstage with Springsteen is cheesy, but the moment of him actually on stage, the Philadelphian Elvis as Springsteen describes him, is both daft and amazing.
Then there is footage of Springsteen busking! As the busker says we’re all equal when we are on the street. Maybe so but to paraphrase Orwell – some of us are more than others. Oh to have been on that street when Springsteen played.
The British fan’s story of his momentous trip to New York and his ticket swap for a concert at Madison Square Garden, as well as the fan who describes having a complete stranger put his arm around him during Blood Brothers highlight how the Springsteen concert experience is different to all others. As for the contrarian’s view that the concerts are too long – he is a lone voice!
The movie finishes with excerpts from a concert in Hyde Park with Paul McCartney accompanying Springsteen – wooh!
As a long term Springsteen fan I too have a string of my Springsteen and I moments including
Playing the grooves off Born to Run, so much so that I had to buy another copy.
Hearing the story of the teenager Springsteen sat next to at the picture theatre, who then invited Springsteen home with him for coffee because he said his parents wouldn’t believe him.
Being on the tram on my way home reading one of Dave Marsh’s biographies and striking up a conversation with a fellow passenger and Springsteen fan.
Buying vinyl copies of bootlegs of concerts in the seventies as that seemed the only way I would get to experience Springsteen live and my ultimate Springsteen & I moment was seeing him live in March 2013 – just awesome.
PS – Thanks to my son for giving me the Bluray for my birthday.
My contribution to Building a Better Blog