The King And The Boss

On the FECC messageboard a posting mentioned that the Bruce Springsteen magazine "Backstreet" has a good article on the influence of Elvis on Springsteen. Backstreets magazine is a publication devoted to the music of Bruce Springsteen (named after one of the songs on the "Born To Run" album). As far as fanzines go, it is one of the best I've seen. In the current issue (#80) there is a stunning 14-page examination of the influence of Elvis on Springsteen's music and career by Shaun Poole. It is truly an eye-opening read. The article reviews songs that Bruce has recorded that reference Elvis (10), Elvis songs that Bruce has performed live (21!) as well a stories about Bruce's attendance at Elvis' 28 May 1977 show in Philadelphia, his attempted "visit" to Graceland in 1976 as well as quotes by the Boss about the King over the years. There really is too much information to mention here, but a couple of items really stick out for me. Firstly, ever since I bought the "Born To Run" album in 1980, I could have sworn that Bruce was wearing an Elvis badge on his leather jacket on the cover. Every time I would pull that album out I would look at that badge and have the same suspicion. Turns out I was right. It is an "Elvis the King" badge from the Fan Club of N.Y.C. There is an entire one-page story about the fan club and some speculation as to whether Bruce himself was actually a member or whether it was Pam Springsteen, his sister. Secondly, there is a quote by Springsteen about Elvis from 1998 that I had not read for a few years. Reading it again makes me realise that those who really matter in rock 'n' roll truly understand Presley's significance: "You could make an argument that one of the most socially conscious artists in the second half of this century was Elvis Presley, even if he probably didn't start out with any set of political ideas that he wanted to accomplish... I think that he was one of the people, in his own way, who led to the sixties and the Civil Rights movement. He began getting us "all shook up," this poor white kid from Mississippi who connected with black folks through their music, which he made his own and then gave to others."
Source: For Elvis CD Collectors Forum / Updated: Sep 18, 2004 
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roytcbintheuk (profilecontact) wrote on Sep 21, 2004report abuse
wasnt bruce the last celebrity to meet elvis in "77
Bill Rauhuff (profilecontact) wrote on Sep 20, 2004report abuse
Bruce as always a class act. Like we say in America the Holy Trinity of Rock n" Roll is Elvis, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. If Elvis had lived he would have collaborated with Springsteen and probably Bob Seger, Tom Petty and John Mellencamp. Those are about the only guys doing any real to goodness American Rock n" Roll anymore. I think this country is pretty much gone to Rap and Pop Country something I hope and believe Elvis would have stayed away from.
gpl (profilecontact) wrote on Sep 18, 2004report abuse
Bruce also wrote the song "Fire" for Elvis and as far as I know even send a demo! Well this song is very famous and popular and even was a No 1 hit for the Pointer Sisters!
But what I like most on Bruce (except his own work)
is everytime he play a song from Elvis he don´t do it
like most of them - y´know like an imitator do Elvis -
no he do it in a very respectfully honestly way!
GregMcGee (profilecontact) wrote on Sep 18, 2004report abuse
I got an Elvis influence on Bruce Springsteen story some may (or may not) have heard. It says "The Boss" (Springsteen) first saw "The King (Elvis) in concert at the Philadelphia Spectrum in May 1977.
Well, during Springsteen's "Born To Run Tour" of 1976, he and Steve Van Zandt went to to Graceland to see Elvis (just like any other fan would). Springsteen jumped the fence and made it to the front door before being ejected by the security guards at the gate.
Elvis wasn't home anyway, he was in Lake Tahoe. (Man wouldn't it have been cool if a young Springsteen had gotten to meet The King?

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