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50 Facts on The Boss


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11 On his reunion tours, front-row tickets had not been sold to the public. Instead, the so-called "Man in Black," a member of Springsteen's road crew, went into the crowd shortly before showtime, plucked out fans from the worst seats in the arena and upgraded them to the front row.

12 Bruce didn't own a record player from the time he was 17 until he was 24.

13 His first car was a '57 Chevy with flames painted on the hood.

14 After a measure to name "Born to Run" the official theme song of New Jersey was defeated, that state's assembly did name it the "unofficial youth anthem of New Jersey."

15 In 1978, Bruce climbed up and spray-painted over what he thought was an especially ugly Sunset Strip billboard advertising his new album and his Los Angeles concert. The next night, he confessed his misdeed in front of 18,000 fans at the Forum.

16 He likes to take motorcycle trips through the southwestern United States with a gang of buddies, staying in cheap motels and frequenting biker bars.

17 On his tours in 1976 and '77, Springsteen's band and road crew had a softball team called the E Street Kings, which played against local teams assembled by the promoters. They rarely lost.

18 A bomb scare halted a Springsteen show in Milwaukee in 1975. He and the band adjourned to a local bar until the cops declared the club safe--and when the show resumed, the notoriously light-drinking Springsteen kept shouting, "Are ya loose?" Clearly, he was.

19 When Springsteen played near Washington, D.C., in 1988, Oliver North's secretary Fawn Hall sent a note backstage saying she'd like to meet him. Reports say his written reply read, "I don't like you. I don't like your boss. I don't like what you did. Thank you."

20 On the Born in the U.S.A. tour in 1984 and '85, Bruce donated upwards of $10,000 to local food banks and veterans' organizations in almost every city he hit.

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