Bruce Springsteen Honored at Kennedy Center By Mellencamp, Vedder, Sting

December 30th, 2009 by Daniel Kreps Leave a reply »

Earlier this month, Eddie Vedder, Melissa Etheridge, John Mellencamp, Ben Harper and Sting brought the songs of Bruce Springsteen to an unlikely venue: Washington, DC’s opulent Kennedy Center. The full Kennedy Center Honors aired on CBS last night, giving fans the opportunity to see the New Jersey legend sitting beside President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama as a cavalcade of artists professed their admiration for his life and music. Caroline Kennedy described Springsteen as “a rocker from the Jersey shore who created his own musical universe and across America and the world became ‘The Boss,’ ” at the top of the show. (Read our on-the-scene report from the Kennedy Center Honors, which also paid tribute to Robert DeNiro, Dave Brubeck, Mel Brooks and Grace Bumbry.)

Look back at artifacts from Springsteen’s career.

“I am not a music critic. Nor historian, nor archivist,” Jon Stewart began his introduction to Springsteen’s tribute. “I cannot tell you where Bruce Springsteen falls in the pantheon of the American songbook. I can not illuminate the context of his work or his roots in the folk and oral history traditions of our great nation. But I am from New Jersey,” Stewart joked, “and so I can tell you what I believe, and what I believe is this: I believe that Bob Dylan and James Brown had a baby. And they abandoned this child on the side of the road, between the exit interchanges of 8A and 9 on the New Jersey Turnpike. That child is Bruce Springsteen,” he said as Springsteen erupted in laughter in the balcony.

“When you listen to Bruce’s music, you aren’t a loser. You are a character in an epic poem … about losers,” Stewart continued. Before a montage that traced Springsteen’s Jersey roots, Stewart referenced Springsteen’s work ethic and heart: “He empties the tank, every time. He empties that tank for his famil...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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