Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen was born September 23, 1949 in Long Branch, New Jersey, USA. His father, Douglas Frederick Springsteen, worked as a bus driver, and was of Irish and Dutch ancestry. His mother, Adele Ann (Zerilli), worked as a legal secretary, and was of Italian descent. He has an older sister, Virginia, and a younger sister Pamela Springsteen. Bruce was raised as a Catholic. He was inspired to take up music when he, at the age of seven, saw Elvis Presley on The Ed Sullivan Show (1948). When he was thirteen he bought his first guitar for 18 dollars. His mother took out a loan when Bruce was 16 and bought him a Kent guitar for 60 dollars.
In 1965, he became the lead guitarist in the band “The Castiles”, he would later become lead singer in the band. The Castiles recorded two original songs at a public recording studio in Brick Township, New Jersey. From 1969 to 1971 he performed with Steven Van Zandt, Danny Federici and Vini “Mad Dog” Lopez in a band called “Child”, that was renamed later to “Steel Mill” when guitarist Robbin Thompson joined the band.
In 1972, he signed a record deal with Columbia Records and released his debut album, “Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.”, with his New Jersey-based colleagues, who would later be called “The E Street Band”, In January, 1973. The album had critical success and so did their second album, “The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle”, released in September, 1973, but had little commercial success. In 1975, after more than 14 month of recording, their third album was released, “Born to Run”, which had both critical and commercial success for Springsteen and the band.
In 1977, he returned to the studio, after a two-year legal battle with former manager Mike Appel, and produced the album, “Darkness on the Edge of Town”, released in 1978 and became a turning point musically for his career. In 1980 came the release of “The River”, the album sold well and he followed up with the album “Nebraska” which had critical success but had little commercial success. Springsteen came back with a bang with the release of the album “Born in the U.S.A.” in 1984, which sold 15 million copies in the U.S. alone and had seven top ten singles. It became one of the best-selling albums of all time.
After the huge success of the “Born in the U.S.A.” album he released a more calm and sedate album in 1987, “Tunnel of Love”, which included songs about love lost and the challenges of love, after the break-up with first wife, Julianne Phillips. The albums released in 1992, “Lucky Town” and “Human Touch” were also popular, Human Touch being the most popular of the two, hitting the number one spot of the best-selling albums in the UK. In 1994 he won an academy award for the song “Streets of Philadelphia” featured in the film Philadelphia (1993).
In 1995, he released the album “The Ghost of Tom Joad”, which was mostly a solo guitar album and was inspired by “Journey to Nowhere: The Saga of the New Underclass,” a book by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Dale Maharidge. After being apart from the E Street Band for several years they reunited with a successful tour which ended in Madison Square Garden in New York in the year 2000. In 2002 he released the first studio album with the full band in over 18 years, “The Rising”, and it became a critical and commercial success. In 2005 he released his third folk album (after “Nebraska” and “The Ghost of Tom Joad”), “Devils & Dust” It was followed by “We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions” in 2006 and “Magic” in 2007. His 16th album will be released on January 27, 2009 and is called “Working on a Dream”.
He married for the first time at the age of 35 to actress Julianne Phillips. The marriage helped boost her acting career, but his traveling took it’s toll on the marriage and the final blow came when she found out his affair with the American singer/songwriter/guitarist Patti Scialfa. Their marriage ended in 1989. He then married Patti Scialfa on June 8th, 1991, They had lived together since the separation between him and his first wife and they had a child before they married. They have three children together: Evan James Springsteen (born July 25, 1990), Jessica Rae (born December 30, 1991) and Sam Ryan Springsteen (born January 5, 1994).
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