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To heal the world, sing songs part 2: Bruce Springsteen’s “Dream” Inaugural

January 17, 2009
Bruce Springsteen 2008

Bruce Springsteen 2008

Did you know “I’m on Fire” by Bruce Springsteen is one of Barack Obama’s favorite songs? (For a version of Bruce playing the song on the street in Copenhagen, scroll down.)

Barack Obama says he admires Springsteen as a man who never forgot his roots. That could be one of many reasons why Springsteen is helping Barack and the world celebrate Obama’s inauguration!

Springsteen fans have another reason to celebrate–a new album Working on a Dream coming Tues. Jan 27. According to NPR,

Bruce Springsteen‘s return to pop production (and the E Street Band) on his 2007 album Magic left him wanting more. Although he hadn’t pushed himself to complete back-to-back albums in more than 30 years, the legendary singer’s longtime producer, Brendan O’Brien, urged Springsteen to keep recording.

“I thought, ‘No, I haven’t done that since my first two records came out in the same year,’ ” Springsteen says. “Usually, I don’t write that quickly. But I went back to my hotel in Atlanta, and over the next week, I wrote several songs that formed the beginning of the new album (Working on a Dream). I found there was more than enough fuel for the fire to keep going.”


Springsteen’s new album, Working on a Dream, will stream in its entirety at starting  Jan. 20, a week before its official release date.

Springsteen’s 24th album was recorded with the E Street Band during breaks from the group’s 2007 tour.

“I hope Working on a Dream has caught the energy of the band, fresh off the road from some of the most exciting shows we’ve ever done,” Springsteen says. “All the songs were written quickly. We usually used one of our first few takes, and we all had a blast making this one from beginning to end.”

Working on a Dream contains 12 new Springsteen songs and one bonus track, “The Wrestler,” which is featured over the closing credits of Darren Aronofsky’s 2008 film of the same name. The track also won a Golden Globe for Best Original Song.

newsinaugposterBruce Springsteen will be in Washington DC Sunday January 18 for inaugural excitement televised by HBO.

Springsteen is officially part of the line-up for We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial. Bruce will join a slew of other artists — including Beyonce, Bono, John Legend, John Mellencamp, Stevie Wonder, and Springsteen’s ’92-93 tour guitarist Shane Fontayne! — for this “Opening Celebration” for the 56th Presidential Inaugural. The event, which begins at 2:00 p.m., is free and open to the public; a portion will be televised courtesy of HBO from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Eastern. Don’t expect the E Street Band; according to the press release, “Rob Mathes will be the music director and arranger for the backing band, which will support all of the artists.” Producer/director Don Mischer: “This is a great opportunity to capture an historic event in a very meaningful setting. We will have the statue of Abraham Lincoln looking down on our stage and a crowd of hundreds of thousands of people lining the mall — a tableau any director would relish.”

From Backstreets, a Bruce Springsteen fan magazine which developed into a website:

Setup is underway at the Lincoln Memorial, where in just about 24 hours, Springsteen will be part of “We Are One,” the Obama Inaugural Celebration kickoff. USA Today calls it a “test run for inauguration,” noting that 500,000 are expected for tomorrow’s free and open-to-the-public event. Temperatures are expected to be in the 30s; gates open at 8 a.m., for a 2:30 p.m. start.

newslincprep from

For a spoiler update, here’s something from the Backstreets mailbag [highlight to reveal hidden text]: “I am singing with the Inaugural Celebration Chorus, and we have not been rehearsing “This Land Is Your Land” to sing with Bruce.  I don’t know if he’s doing that as well, but….we’ve been rehearsing ‘The Rising’.”

We’ll just have to tune in to be sure. See more information at, which now lists a live broadcast at 2:30p.m. ET/11:30 a.m. PT, and an encore play at 7 p.m. ET/PT and 11:3- ET/PT.

500,000 people??? That’s gonna be crazy! Fortunately for us we have a simpler problem: finding someone who’s got HBO! Any volunteers to host the Big Monkey, Art Predator and small boy? We’ll bring some wine and Sierra Nevada Pale Ale!

vinwoadIt’s going to be quite a week for Springsteen fans, what with an inaugural concert and the release of a new album. And in two weeks, there’s Bruce’s  Super Bowl Half-Time show. From Backstreets:

Sunday, February 1: Bruce and the E Street Band play Super Bowl XLIII Halftime. Visit to watch the Halftime commercial, and to have a look at and discuss seven “tentative playlists” just posted today. For another (hilarious) take on how halftime might go, don’t miss The Sports Guy’s column — this is Bill Simmons at

As a lifelong Bruce Springsteen fan, the Super Bowl ads for his performance next month never stop flooring me. Don’t they know how the man is wired? He can’t bang out three songs without sprinkling one autobiographical story in there, and he certainly can’t just go away without returning for an encore, right? (Note to the NFL: After Bruce finishes his set, hog-tie him to one of the uprights or else he’s coming back out for three more songs. Just trust me. You don’t want Bruce wandering back onto the field with his guitar like Shooter in “Hoosiers” and getting bowled over by a safety.) Look, Bruce might be telling the NFL, “Don’t worry, I won’t tell a story. I’ll just sing my three songs and get out of there.” But he won’t be able to do it. You watch.

There’s lots of examples of his story telling on your tube. For a spoof, read the rest here.

Below are more Bruce Springsteen posts by Art Predator with help from the Big Monkey:


San Jose Magic

Magic in Anaheim

Bruce & Morello in Anaheim

more Bruce & Morello

backstage at Anaheim

Bruce rarities

Bruce obsession

The Big Monkey & Bruce

6 Comments leave one →
  1. poeticgrin permalink
    January 18, 2009 2:12 pm

    I discovered The Boss in high school. It was around the time Philadelphia came out, and I bought his greatest hits album. I knew him, of course. Born in the USA, mostly. But I hadn’t paid much attention. He was more of my older sister’s “age.” But Thunder Road hooked me, and it was the soundtrack that played as the boy I had a crush on, the cute, popular bad boy jock who let me tag along, went on a road trip together, both lying to our parents about where we were, driving hundreds of miles in the middle of the night, windows down… “oooh come take my hand….”

    After 9/11, The Rising helped heal me. I still believe that album was his masterpiece. You’re Missing moves me every time.

    Magic is haunting.

    Can’t wait for the new stuff. I didn’t know anything about this – thanks for posting!


  2. January 18, 2009 6:01 pm

    Bryan, what a great story about the impact Bruce Springsteen’s music has had on your life! Thank you for sharing it here!

    To the post above, I’ve added links to other posts here about Bruce Springsteen which you might enjoy checking out.

  3. January 18, 2009 7:43 pm

    In case you didn’t hear the program, Bruce came on essentially immediately after the National Anthem to sing a rousing and moving rendition of “The Rising” with a chorus.

    Much later in the program of music and speakers, Bruce followed Obama’s inspirational message “Anything is possible in America” with “This Land Is Your Land” in a beautiful multi-part version led by 89 year old Pete Seeger.

  4. January 18, 2009 11:12 pm

    hey there art predator! great post!

    January 23, 2009 8:00 pm

    Mr. Barak Obama will be the very most important Presidente of the United States of America. He had a mother with a very good disposition to turn the world the best way to live.


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