In honor of his 70th birthday, I wanted to pay tribute to Bruce Springsteen by listing my top 20 favorite Springsteen songs. I couldn’t do just 10. There were too many. And I actually could have done way more than 20 but I figured 20 was a good number. It was difficult to narrow them down but I managed to do so.
- “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” – Don’t get on me about this one. In my opinion, it’s the best version there is. I love to hear it any time of year. In fact, I just had the opportunity to hear it the other day on E Street Radio when they were playing a live concert from 9/20/78 that was done in Passaic, NJ and Bruce sang the song for the audience as a “surprise”. I was in my glory! Bruce and Christmas. You can’t go wrong.
- “Light of Day” – It may be a more obscure Bruce song, one many may not know about. If you’ve ever seen the Michael J. Fox/Joan Jett movie of the same name, you’ll know the song. They sing the song in the movie.
- and 17. “Human Touch” and “Better Days” – Both resonate for me because they were songs I played when I was with my first boyfriend. He bought me the cassettes.
- “Rosalita” – I remember seeing a video of a live performance of this song on a compilation VHS tape I had of Springsteen videos. I thought it was comical when the girls kept sneaking up on the stage.
- “Fire” – It’s just a good song. Even the Pointer Sisters sang it well.
- “Blinded By The Light” – Another underrated one. And Bruce’s only #1. Only as a songwriter.
- “Growin’ Up” – You can hear this at the end of “Big Daddy” and well done on Broadway.
- “Streets of Philadelphia” – From the movie of the same name. Tom Hanks. Bruce. Can’t get any better than that.
- “The Rising” – Bruce knew we’d need this song and album after 9/11
- “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out” – There is a private joke in my family about this song. All because of E Street Radio and how during a recent vacation, whenever we turned on E Street Radio, this song seemed to be playing. But it would be a different version. One time you may get a live version done on December 6, 1980 in England, another time it may be from July 17, 2016 at Gillette. You never knew. A great song. Especially since it pays great tribute to Clarence Clemons.
- “Tunnel of Love” – It’s such a picturesque song. I had to analyze it in my junior year creative writing class. The whole album means a great deal to me. The “Tunne of Love Express Tour” was the first time I saw Bruce live.
- “Hungry Heart” – To me Bruce’s first commercial success. Can be heard in “Risky Business”.
- “Badlands” – Just a great opening to the “Darkness” album
- “The Promised Land” – Another great one from “Darkness”
- “The River” – The song that really made me recognize Bruce as a storyteller.
- “Thunder Road” – Who wouldn’t want to ride out tonight to case the promised land? Especially while listening to Bruce.
- “Dancing In The Dark” – Bruce’s highest charting song. And the world’s introduction to Courtney Cox.
- “Born In The USA” – My first real exposure to Bruce where I actually began paying attention. The song reveals the plight of the Vietnam vet and what they experienced, especially upon returning home. It is a great song to listen to while on the Music Express at the amusement park. I know because I have. The song is incredible. The entire album is phenomenal.
1.”Born To Run” – I cannot say enough about this song. It is my all-time favorite song EVER, by ANY artist. There is nothing that surpasses it. Nothing ever will. If I am alone in the car (or anywhere for that matter) and this song is playing (either on the radio, CD, whatever), that volume is going up FULL CRANK and I am belting it out! AND. I. DO. NOT. CARE! This is the album that put Bruce on the map. It is extremely well-done and considering the amount of time I’ve heard they put into recording it, it should be.