Wed. Sep 27th, 2023

In the 1970s, Bruce Springsteen burst into the rock and roll world. The New Jersey vocalist had a unique style that blended many elements of early rock with a new sound that featured an aggressive voice and different instrumentation. As a young musician, he was influenced by several 1960s rock stars, including The Beatles and Bob Dylan. Bruce Springsteen once referred to Bob Dylan as the “father of my country,” demonstrating how influential Springsteen considers Dylan to be. Bob Dylan was born in Minnesota, yet his music spoke to Americans from working-class families in working-towns. Springsteen was raised in a working-class family in New Jersey, and his music reflects that spirit to a large extent. While Dylan and Springsteen are not from the same area, they share a similar uncompromising spirit that appeals to a wide audience.

Springsteen named Dylan the “father of my country” in his autobiography, Born to Run, because he was the first artist to give him a “truthful” perspective of where he lived. “Bob Dylan is the father of my country,” declared Springsteen. “Not only were Highway 61 Revisited and Bringing It All Back Home great records, but they were the first time I can remember being exposed to a true vision of the place I lived.”

Bruce Springsteen was thrilled to induct Bob Dylan into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988. During his address, the “Thunder Road” singer mentioned hearing Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone” for the first time. He claimed his mother did not understand, but he knew this was the “toughest voice” he had ever heard. “I was in the car with my mother listening to WMCA the first time I heard Bob Dylan, and on came that snare shot that sounded like somebody had kicked open the door to your mind, ‘Like a Rolling Stone,'” Springsteen explained. “And my mother, who was no rock and roll stiff; she liked the music, she listened – she sat there for a minute, looked at me, and said, ‘That guy can’t sing.'” But I knew she was mistaken. I sat there and said nothing, but I knew I was listening to the harshest voice I’d ever heard.”

He went out and purchased Highway 61, claiming that it was all he “played for weeks.” It talked to him from a young age and gave him the impression that he was wise beyond his years. “I looked at the cover, with Bob, in that satin blue jacket and Triumph Motorcycle shirt,” he added. “And when I was a kid, Bob’s voice both thrilled and terrified me.” It made me feel naive and irresponsible. That is still the case. But it reached down and touched whatever little worldliness a 15-year-old student in high school in New Jersey had at the time.”

Born to Run is Bruce Springsteen’s third and possibly most renowned album. While it did not chart at number one, the album’s legacy has lasted over 40 years, with songs like “Born to Run” and “Thunder Road” becoming classics. In a 2018 interview with BBC, Springsteen stated that the album was heavily influenced by three artists: Duane Eddy, Roy Orbison, and Bob Dylan. “So, those are the three things that kind of found their way — and inspector records — so, those are the three things that really found their way into Born to Run because I was never much of a revolutionary musician,” Springsteen explained. I put a lot of things together, including material I dug up from within myself.”

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