Story 2016-10-07 New York City, NY

07.10.16 New York City, NY, "New Yorker Festival"

Fantastic event In New York City tonight. Lasted 90 minutes. The moderator, David Remnick, from the New Yorker was great. He had done his homework, it's obvious he's a fan and really engaged Bruce who was talkative and told a lot of great stories.
Bruce read a couple times directly from the book.
Patti Scialfa, Jon Landau, Patti Smith, Elliott Murphy and Charlie Rose were among the VIPs in the audience

This is very long and basically from a bunch of notes I scribbled down.

The evening started very close to 7 p.m. with Remnick coming out for about a .five-minute intro, talking about how in 1973 he went to Madison Square Garden to see the band Chicago, he sat up in the blue seats, but what he remembered most about that night was the opening act, Bruce Springsteen.
Then he brought Bruce out, saying how Bruce has the No. 1 book on the New York Times bestsellers list, and Bruce said "with a bullet!"

Remnick asked Bruce if he had read books by other musicians and did that influence him here and Bruce said "I read Bob's (Dylan) book, I read Keith Richards' book, and I did it the way I knew how."
Remnick then asked "why now?" and Bruce replied, "I wanted to do it before I forget everything!"
Remnick asked Bruce if he relied on other people for some recollections and he said "I called a few friends. I called George Theiss my friend who was in The Castiles to ask him about some things from back then. I wanted to get dates and the chronology right."
Funny moment next when Dave Remnick asked him "were there things you couldn't or wouldn't write about?" and Bruce said "I don't want to talk about that!"
He then asked Bruce to read a passage from the book, Page 29 which was about his father. Bruce had to put on his reading glasses and the crowd cheered.
"I only use them in bed," Bruce said.
Bruce said the book was more than 50 years of experiences, two psychiatrists including one who died on me already.
The conversation turned to Bruce's parents leaving New Jersey when he was 17 and he talked about how his sister Ginny was pregnant and getting married to a bullrider. Bruce said "we do have bullriders in New Jersey. There's Cowtown in South Jersey. which is a big rodeo."
Bruce talked about his mother "When I was 13 she was just in her mid 30s and she always was listening to the radio. She was excited by Elvis, the Beatles. She was always playing the Top 40 radio in the house."
Bruce then was asked about the story early on in the book where he wrote about subbing for Mick Jagger one night.
"The Rolling Stones are playing Convention Hall in Asbury Park and Mick gets sick. A 15-year-old pimply kid looks up to Keith Richards who tells me to come on up!"
Next they played a short clip of "Baby I" by The Castiles and the crowd cheered as Bruce laughed. He talked about he was 16 when they recorded that in a little studio in Bricktown, NJ. "We were a pretty intense little group."
He aid the single never made it to wax, "we had it on acetate.
"We had a good time, that meant a lot to us."
Remnick then asked Bruce about why Asbury Park was a popular place for musicians.
"It was the Jersey Shore's Fort Lauderdale. Bands came from all over to play there. There were a lot of bands playing top 40."
Next Bruce talked about the Upstage Club in Asbury Park.
"It was a natural gather place for musicians. The Upstage was open from 8 to 5. It sold no booze so even younger people could hang out there. Bars back then were open until 3 a.m. so you had a lot of musicians who came in to jam after 3 a.m. There was a lot of jamming there. You signed your name on a list and you had a half hour to an hour to play."
Bruce also talked about playing the Marlboro Psychiatric Hospital in New Jersey "there was a guy introducing us who kept going on and on" until the attendants had to pull him off the stage. He also mentioned going to the Osprey in Manasquan and listening to the bands outside since he was too young to go inside.
Bruce talked about living above a beauty parlor (it was on the second floor) on Cookman Avenue in Asbury Park and that's where most of the songs from "Greetings from Asbury Park" came from.
Remnick asked him about his audition for Columbia Records with John Hammond and Bruce told the story which is pretty much detailed in the book, how he had to borrow a guitar from one of his Castiles bandmates and it "was a wild, wild day."
Bruce said how Mike Appel talked himself into getting into see John Hammond and that's was "the great thing he (Mike) ever did.
"Mike told John Hammond I was the next biggest thing since Shakespeare and Bozo the Clown," Bruce said.
Much of the rest of the story is all in the book so I don't want to give too much away if you haven't read it yet with Bruce talking about how he felt before the audiition etc.
But it was great at the end when John Hammond said to him ":You got to be on Columbia Records."
Bruce then said: "If things didn't work out I would have gone back to Asbury Park, put another band together and take another swing at it."
The discussion then turned to how his Dad inspired his much and his stage show.
"I put my Dad's work clothes on every day during the Born in the U.S.A. tour. I wanted to sing to him in some way.
They talked about the final 10 shows in the United States recently and how Patti suggested that he play of lot of songs from the early stuff.
There was a discussion about Clarence Clemons. "Clarence was like a dream. I just wanted to hear that sound," Bruce said.
He then talked about the saxophone solo on "Jungleland" and it "took a long, long time. It started out as a guitar solo and then turned into the saxophone."
They then played a short clip of "Born to Run" and the discussion turned in that direction about the recording of the song and Jimmy Iovine being the engineer. How Bruce liked how the song from "Born to Run" came out but he had problems with the whole album and did toss it into a swimming pool. How he and Jimmy Iovine finally listend to the album in a stereo store in Richmond, Va. because no one had a record player, so they asked if they could listen to it in the store.
Bruce was asked about his shows and he said "You have to know why do people come to your shows. You want to know what it feels to really alive," as the audience applauded. He mentioned how a three-minute record can really inspired you and that "I get paid to be as present as I can be on every night I'm out there."
Bruce mentioned how the Born in the U.S.A tour was filled with a lot of stress and talked about throwing a guitar near Jon Landau one night.
Remnick said his wife wanted to know the answer to this question: "What is your workout routine because this is ridiculous (how Bruce plays four-hour shows)?" Bruce said "It's all mental. Afterward (a four-hour show) I feel clear and can sleep and I'm too tired to be depressed.
"I have one opportunity to speak to these people and I may never see you again or they may never see me again."
The conversation turned to politics and Remnick asked Bruce his though on Donald Trump.
"I thought he was funny as a rich New York business man but it's not funny as a presidential candidate. I predict he will not win but he as done a lot of damage and I'm afraid of his lasting affect will have on history." and some of the other things he has said recently in interviews about the genie being out of the bottle.
Remnick asked him if Bruce was disappointed in Obama and Bruce said "I'm still a fan. I would have liked some things done better."
Bruce then talked about how his kids couldn't figure out "why people (before selfies) were always asking him to scribble his name on pieces of paper?"
"You know how you're interested in Barney? Well some people are interested in me that way."
He also said that his oldest son, Evan, came home one day from school and asked him "What is a Tenth Avenue Freeze-out?" That some kids in school had heard about it from there parents. Bruce said he then pulled out his acoustic guitar and played it for him.
Remnick asked Bruce about how long can he keep going and he said "there's no end in sight. I will have no trouble sitting in my chair just playing my acoustic guitar."
The evening ended with Bruce reading another passage from the book which has been posted on several videos.
Overall a very rewarding evening. I do hope the audio is made available from this as it was a special night for Bruce and his fans and should be shared for all to hear.
Some notes:
It was all general admission and the place was filled up. But you could have gotten there after the doors opened (around 6:05 pm..) and still had a great seat, pretty much anywhere was a great spot.
They handed you an autographed copy of the book as you walked in.
Patti Scialfa came in just as the lights went down and sat in the second row on the aisle on the right side facing the stage.She was clapping along with everyone else and also taking pictures on her phone.
She was mentioned several times by Bruce and one time as people clapped he said "Yeah, let's hear it for Patti!"

If you made it this far, thank you for reading.

Compiled by : Stan Goldstein

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