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The Boss: The Inner World Of Springsteen

Updated on June 15, 2012

The Wisdom, the Depth, and the E Street Shuffle

Bruce Springsteen, often noted for bold anthems and political stances, is more than just a social advocate, a preacher of faith, love, hope, and dreams, or a good musician that, as Kevin Smith said, 'made the ordinary epic.'

The Boss notes his inner struggles, with lines that trace the workings of the human heart like a humanistic psychologist, or even a Christian mystic following the path of passion and penance. He has often been said to be cheesy, or cliched --and yes, some of his lines make you think of hallmark cards. But the secret is this --they are well-placed and well-timed cliches, put into the context of a life, a story, and the cliches dictate the lesson and the thrust of the guitar chords each time.

In Tunnel of Love, with songs like "Valentine's Day," or even in the common line in "Brilliant Disguise' he sings profound, "God have mercy on the man..that does what he's sure of." The other album, and this is a topic for 10 more articles, that I like, is Darkness On The Edge Of Town. Here is the struggle of his cleansing, his personal pain, his battle-cry to emerge victorious after walking through 'the valley of the shadow of death." The last song on the album, same as the album title, might well refer to Calvary:

"I'll be on that hill 'cuz I can't stop,

I'll be on that hill with everything I got!'


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    • ramerican profile image

      ramerican 5 years ago

      Well-put, Lawrence. It's one of those albums that is sacred.

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      Lawrence 5 years ago

      Bruce Springsteen's Darkness on the Edge of Town broke new ground for The Boss in 1978. A counterpoint to the operatic elegance of Born to Run, the album was an angry, raw record that burst forth after a three-year hiatus. Because of its darker tones, some might call Darkness a difficult album, but despite this, it's a cherished gem for many. Collecting stories and photos from hundreds of fans, The Light in Darkness celebrates this classic record, allowing readers to revisit the excitement of that moment when the needle found the grooves in that first cut and the thundering power of "Badlands" shook across the hi-fi for the very first time. Or the uninitiated, but soon-to-be-converted teenager, brought along by friends and finding salvation at one of the legendary three-plus hour concerts - shows that embodied all the manic fury of a revival meeting.