Springsteen and Landau: Growing Young With Rock and Roll

(This is an updated repost of a blog from 2014)

On May 8, 1974 Jon Landau seemed lost. If you read anything in the beginning of his 1974 Real Paper review, you see a tired human being who is drained. Columbia Records marketing material aside, Landau's article begins as a lament about a cold harsh human truth - purity doesn't seem to last.

Then came May 9, 1974.

Many of us remember how we discovered Springsteen. I first heard this kid on the radio (I don't know exactly when), and a few months later(maybe more) came Born To Run --- after which music was never the same.

Born to Run was a symphony, an opera. It's a small town story, a city drama, a psychological super highway.

It's poetry and guitars and a haunting sax --- what more could a young man ask for in the early 70's? 

I remember Maxanne, on WBCN, so smart, so sophisticated and worldly. And I remember Springsteen performing on one of her shows.

Truth be told, I don't remember if I heard this live or replayed, but that radio performance, so amazing in it's improvisation and intimate access to this young man, lit up the atmosphere. You can hear parts of the performance at the link below, but don't go there yet.

It was in this environment that Jon Landau met Springsteen. Here was this young kid from New Jersey full of hope, promise, innocence and desire, and there was Landau.

"It’s four in the morning and raining. I’m 27 today, feeling old,…"

It's not that Jon Landau was going to go on and write one of the most important reviews in rock and roll, and it's not that he and Springsteen were to go on to become one of the most successful teams in music...the importance of that review in the Real Paper on May 22, 1974 is that Jon Landau was facing a future that all of us eventually face…the apparent end of that beautiful and hypnotic state called innocence.

Innocence ends secretly.

Before May 9, 1974, Landau, and we, in childhood had lost a president. He, and we, had lost a president's brother and a minister.  We had lost a war, we had lost friends, we feared being called up, lost hope.

Walter Cronkite implied America was lost.

We lost an election, were in the process of losing another president, and on the very day of the concert he reviewed on May 9, 1974 at the Harvard Square Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the impeachment hearings in the US House of Representatives had begun.

So there is not just music in Jon Landau's review. There is the question of where to go and why...and how? The music which had helped him grow into the being he was on May 9, 1974, was not providing what we all need from great music and art - so it would seem: there was nothing to lead him in his adult life.

We know that Columbia used the review which Landau wrote and later was published in the Real Paper, for a marketing blitz. And Springsteen has often said it was the bane of his existence. But Landaus' story was about a bigger truth than music or history or the Harvard Square Theater. The Real Paper, Rolling Stone, and reviews that do their job well, help us understand why art is so vital to - why it's the energy of - the human soul.

We watch, we listen, we study, we absorb art because it gives us access to our higher selves. An artist, if we are lucky, has used their medium to compose a truth in a way we have never heard or seen before. Landau's article broadcasts this for us. And of course, Springsteen has given us that for decades.

I am one of those who thinks Born to Run is one of the best records ever made. It's a symphony, an opera. It's a small town story, a city drama, a psychological super highway. The photograph that anchors this site is from that concert Landau attended. It's a concert during the time Springsteen was creating, and beginning to perform, Born to Run. And if you listen to the Maxanne WBCN recording now, you will hear the joy and transparency of a young man with tons of talent, who was just emerging on the scene, beginning to tell us his truth.

On May 22, 1974, the Real Paper published his review. Landau wrote, "But in my own moments of greatest need, I never give up the search for sounds that can answer every impulse, consume all emotion, cleanse and purify — all things that we have no right to expect from even the greatest works of art but which we can occasionally derive from them."

Yes.

We're lucky Springsteen and Landau met. People talked, ideas were exchanged, work was done, souls were nourished. And we're fortunate if we have had the chance to grow through these years as well.

Springsteen "Future" Piano Photo for Father' Day from 5/9/1974 Reason # 4

Taken from "…10 facts you need to know about these prints."

4. The "Piano" shot, the one we are selling here on the Gallery591974 site, is the best of the bunch. It's an artistically stunning shot. Bruce is playing "For You" in this shot.

If you are thinking about getting your father - who probably has to be a big Springsteen fan - a photo of the Harvard Square Theatre concert from 1974, the Piano Series #1 shot is the most beautiful shot of all, and we are selling a smaller ink jet print here. This shot is framed from the side of the stage, where photographer Barry Schneier was sitting on a drum case, as the rest of the band stood beside him. Read Barry's account of how Bruce walked toward him and sat at the piano, then started playing the chords that would lead into "For You". Jon Landau mentions this song in his article, and it's a reverent shot.

There are many things we value about these photographs, but PIano Series #1 is that rare frame of perfect light, perfect composition, focus and historical context and meaning that elevate it to a work of art. Photography gives us one great thing that other art forms, such as music, do not: it allows us to stop and look and search and examine - it stops time. And in that moment which we hold in our hands, we see the image of a person who will never look like that again, at a time that moves quickly toward the present. But this photograph, accompanied by an article which changed many people lives, and an artist who kept growing, is a caught moment in a larger story of hope and redemption.

 

Springsteen 1974 photo as Father's Day Present: Top 10 Reasons it matters.

Barry Schneier Photography is offering a special Father's Day discount on selected prints of Bruce Springsteen's historic 5.9.1974 concert.

If you were to buy a Springsteen Print for Father's Day this year, first of all, you better hurry, (deadline for guaranteed delivery is June17 at 4PM EST), but here are 10 facts you need to know about these prints…after all - if your dad or husband is a Bruce fanatic, you need to offer SOMETHING that can impress him about this present.

1. All photos were taken at the Harvard Square Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts on May 9,1974. The theatre is not owned by Harvard, and in fact it is currently not even in use.

2. Springsteen opened for Bonnie Raitt that night.

3. There were 2 shows that night. The first show has some audio recordings floating around on the web. At the second show - when the "Piano" shot was taken, there were no other audio, video or photographic recordings. These photos are it!

4. The "Piano" shot, the one we are selling here on the Gallery591974 site in a limited addition, is the best of the bunch. It's an artistically stunning shot. Bruce is playing "For You" in this shot. You can get smaller ink jet versions of this print at the Barry Schneier Photography site.

5. Jon Landau was in the audience at this show, the second set that night.

6. Who is Jon Landau? O, that's right, you are the children of a Springsteen fan.

7. Jon Landau went on to write an article for the Real Paper (he also wrote for Rolling Stone) that was published on May 22, 1974, that declared Springsteen to be, "…rock and roll future…".

and

8. Landau went on to become Springsteen's manager, friend and an important part of his musical life.

9. The "Piano" shot has amazing composition, contrast and structure. Look at the light. There is one light on the piano above the keyboard, and one light offstage behind Springsteen. These 2 sources draw and shade this shot. There were a limited number of concerts at the Harvard Square Theatre in the early 70's, it was primarily used as an art house cinema, then later as a movie theatre chain, so the lighting and sound were relatively primitive, especially by today's standards. AND, the film in those days was no where near as sensitive as the cameras of today.

10. The backstory to this photo - this concert and this night - is significant. Barry Schneier, the photographer, was involved in getting Springsteen this booking. He had seen Springsteen at another performance in Cambridge a month earlier in April 1974.. He knew and took photos for the promoters - and introduced them to Springsteen's first 2 albums. The promoters met with Bruce and offered him the opening sets, which he accepted. Barry Schneier had incredible access to the venue that day and night, and in many ways, it was the night Springsteen's career and life changed forever.

So now you have 10 facts. There are more on this site (read the Landau article) and other sites on the internet. This photo is becoming a collectors item. For the casual fan (or child or wife of) with limited budget this ink jet prints on sale for this Father's Day are the way to go. (ranging from $160 +S&H and up) For the serious collector, look at the Gallery 5.9.1974 limited edition print. At $5000 it is a serious commitment, but it may be one of the most important little known music photographs in history.

41 years ago tonight.

Tonight marks the 41st anniversary of a pivotal moment in rock and roll. On May 9. 1974 Bruce Springsteen performed at the Harvard Square Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was a show that changed the world of music. This is the concert Jon Landau attended.

On May 22, 1974, the Real Paper published his review. Landau wrote, "But in my own moments of greatest need, I never give up the search for sounds that can answer every impulse, consume all emotion, cleanse and purify — all things that we have no right to expect from even the greatest works of art but which we can occasionally derive from them."

This is the concert when Landau saw, "...rock and roll future...".

The image on our home page was virtually unknown until recently, and it's historic context is complimented by its rarity and by it's outstanding technical qualities. The balance, light and focus of this photograph are stunning, especially considering the technology of the day and the primitive state of the concert lighting that night.

This photograph is from the Harvard Square Theatre concert on May 9, 1974. The second show, when Springsteen performs "For You".

There are no other images, or recordings, of this 2nd show at the Harvard Square Theatre on May 9, 1974: the show Jon Landau attended, the show that changed music forever.

Landau and Springsteen: Growing ..().. with Rock and Roll

On May 8, 1974 Jon Landau was lost. If you see anything in his 1974 Real Paper review, you see a tired human being whose soul is drained. Columbia Records marketing material aside, Landau's article begins as a lament about a cold harsh human truth - purity doesn't seem to last.

Then came May 9, 1974.

Many of us remember how we discovered Springsteen. I first heard this kid on the radio (I don't know exactly when), and a few months later(maybe more) came Born To Run --- after which music was never the same.

Born to Run was a symphony, an opera. It's a small town story, a city drama, a psychological super highway system.

It's poetry and guitars and a haunting sax --- what more could a young man ask for in the early 70's? Except of course a girlfriend.

I remember Maxanne, on WBCN, with her seductive voice, so smart, so sophisticated and worldly. And I remember Springsteen performing on one of her shows.

Truth be told, I don't remember if I heard this live or replayed, but that radio performance, so amazing in it's improvisation and intimate access to this young man, lit up the atmosphere. You can hear parts of the performance at the link below, but don't go there yet.

It was in this environment that Jon Landau met Springsteen. Here was this young kid full of hope, promise, innocence and desire, and there was Landau.

"It’s four in the morning and raining. I’m 27 today, feeling old,…"

It's not that Jon Landau was going to go on and write one of the most important reviews in rock and roll, and it's not that he and Springsteen were to go on to become one of the most successful teams in music, The importance of that review in the Real Paper on May 22, 1974 is that Jon Landau was lost, facing a future that all of us eventually face…the apparent end of that beautiful and hypnotic state called innocence.

Innocence ends secretly.

Before May 9, 1974, Landau, and we, in childhood had lost a president. He, and we, had lost a president's brother and a minister.  We had lost a war, friends, feared being called up, lost hope.

Walter Cronkite implied America was lost.

We lost an election, were in the process of losing another president, and on the very day of the concert he reviewed on May 9, 1974 at the Harvard Square Theater, the impeachment hearings in the US House of Representatives had begun.

So there is not just music in Jon Landau's review. There was the question of where to go and why...and how. The music which had helped him grow into the human being he was on May 9, 1974, was not providing what we all need from great music and art - so it would seem: there was nothing to lead him into his adult life.

We know that Columbia used the review which Landau wrote and later was published in the Real Paper, for a marketing blitz. And Springsteen has often said it was the bane of his existence. But Landaus' story was about a bigger truth than music or history or the Harvard Square Theater. The Real Paper, Rolling Stone, and reviews that do their job well, help us understand why art is so vital to - why it's the energy of - the human soul.

We watch, we listen, we study, we absorb art because it gives us access to our higher selves. An artist, if we are lucky, has used their medium to compose a truth in a way we have never heard or seen before. Landau's article broadcasts this for us. And of course, Springsteen has given us that for decades.

I am one of those who thinks Born to Run is the best record ever made. It's a symphony, an opera. It's a small town story, a city drama, a psychological super highway system. The photograph that anchors this site is from that concert Landau attended. It's a concert during the time Springsteen was creating, and beginning to perform, Born to Run. And if you listen to the Maxanne WBCN recording now, you will hear the joy and transparency of a young man with tons of talent, who was just emerging on the scene, beginning to tell us his truth.

On May 22, 1974, the Real Paper published his review. Landau wrote, "But in my own moments of greatest need, I never give up the search for sounds that can answer every impulse, consume all emotion, cleanse and purify — all things that we have no right to expect from even the greatest works of art but which we can occasionally derive from them."

Yes.

This is true.

We're lucky Springsteen and Landau met. People talked, ideas exchanged, work was done, souls were nourished. And we're fortunate if we have had the chance to grow through these years as well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4JUfMLH8sA

http://all-the-wine.blogspot.com/2010/04/growing-young-with-rock-and-roll-jon.html

Photo Giveaway winners!!!

We have 2 winners! Our apologies for the delay in announcing our first 2 winners of the photo giveaway. We wanted to contact each winner to make sure they were not going to give the photo as a present…we don't want to spoil any surprises!

And we appreciate everyone who liked us or joined our mailing list. Please keep liking and joining, we still have 3 more prints to give away in the next few months.

Our fist winner is Andy Swanson. No need for us to give Andy's home address, email or telephone number, but Andy is thrilled he won... and we are too. We shipped the print 2 weeks ago and are happy to report it is in Andy's possession.

Our second winner has been contacted and we are corresponding. We'll announce the name of our second winner soon.

So thank you all for participating. Gallery 5.9.1974 has also donated a print to Monmouth University for a fundraising auction for the Springsteen archives, and we will soon announce another auction donation some of you may be interested in. We think this image of Bruce from 1974 is a gift, and we hope to share it as well as sell it, so many people can enjoy and benefit from it.

So please keep on spreading the word! Individuals who have already “Liked” the gallery Facebook page or have previously joined our email list will be considered already entered. You can "Like" our Facebook page AND join our email list and have 2 chances to win.

For You : for who?

Bruce Springsteen has always offered a kind of redemption through rock and roll, it's one of the reasons his work transcends most other popular art. After his performance this week with U2 for the AIDS Benefit, we wondered about the song he was performing 40 years ago when the photo that anchors our site was taken.

'For You' is about a suicide… but whose? And why did he change it from a mid tempo recording on Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. in 1973 (It was later included on the compilation album The Essential Bruce Springsteen.) to the piano ballad he frequently, if not exclusively, performs live?

We have never been convinced this song is about just one woman, one friend, one person he is trying to save.

Is this song for us?

Springsteen's passion for bigger answers and bigger questions is never more obvious than when he declares.

'Remember how I kept you waiting when it was my turn to be the god?'

So what is this song about? It is for you?

Performing with the band U2, who share the spiritual conviction of artist as minister of the faith, who is Springsteen speaking to? Who does he hope to reach?

 

 

For your consideration.

Why this Springsteen photo is one of the most...

Gallery 5.9.1974 believes we have one of the most important photographs in Rock and Roll history. Why?

• This photograph is believed to be the ONLY media from the concert on May 9,1974 at Harvard Square Theartre in Cambridge, Massachusetts where Bruce Springsteen opened for Bonnie Raitt.

• This photograph captures Springsteen performing when Rolling Stone and Real Paper writer Jon Landau was in the audience.

• This  performance is the one Landau later wrote his famous "Rock and Roll future" article about.

• Landau also calls out this precise song... For You, " He took his overpowering story of a suicide, “For You,” and sang it with just piano accompaniment and a voice that rang out to the very last row of the Harvard Square theatre."

• This photograph was taken LIVE. This moment happened, then vanished.

• The famous photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson coined a term,  "the decisive moment". "Life is once, forever", he is quoted as saying. This photograph is that.

• The image composition is stunning. The lines, the concentration of light, the shapes, the blacks and grays, there are many things in this photograph that are technically perfect.

• It was shot in 1974, in a performance space converted from a movie theater for 2 nights.

• The lighting...look at the lighting. The physics of this photograph are baffling. It appears 2 lights illuminate this image, and yet they perfectly define Springsteen's form.

• This photograph has not been retouched. The contact sheet reveals the reflected and direct light for all of the images taken from this particular angle were influenced by something close to magic.

• The piano light is a miracle. It centers the shot, it's perfectly exposed, it illuminates Springsteen's face...it is the essence of photography.

• No one knew Bruce Springsteen then. Yes, there were deeply committed early fans, but this photograph was unknown and under appreciated for 35 years.

• Bruce Springsteen, 23 and full of talent, vision, inspiration and energy, was a performer like few others. See the Hammersmith Odeon concert in 1975 to get a sense of the power of the young Springsteen live. 

* Read Landau's article.

The Financial Times has an article about the growing value of music photography. Rock and roll is one of the major arts of our time. Images of this art form are as important as amplifiers.

You can purchase a collectors edition of the print here, or see more sizes and images at photographer Barry Schneier's site here.

Limited Edition Bruce Springsteen pictures Giveaway

In 1974, Bruce Springsteen's Harvard Square Theatre performance changed the trajectory of Rock and Roll. Barry Schneier (http://www.barryschneierphotography.com) captured that performance, and Gallery 5.9.1974 is pleased to carry one of the most memorable pictures of Bruce Springsteen from that night.  

See purchasing and collecting details for this rare and beautiful photo here.

And, we are also pleased to announce our first 2 giveaways of this historic Limited Edition print. You can sign up here to become eligible to win. Two winners will be picked by random selection in the next month. One on November 26th and one on December 3rd of this year. Individuals who have already “Liked” the gallery Facebook page or have previously joined our email list will be considered already entered. You can "Like" our Facebook page AND join our email list and have 2 chances to win.

At Gallery 5.9.1974 we know there are many Springsteen fans who would love to own a print like this. If you collect Bruce Springsteen memorabilia or just want a great picture of Bruce Springsteen to hang on your wall,  join us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/gallery591974) and on Gallery591974.com for a chance to win. Good Luck!

For them...

We reached out today to the Home Base Program about donating a print of this photo to help their fundraising efforts. It occurred to us, how appropriate this particular photo would be to help this great program, which, "provides clinical care and support services to service members, veterans, and family members throughout New England, who are affected by combat or deployment-related stress (also known as Post Traumatic Stress or PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). "

This photo captures Bruce in his 1974 performance of "For You", which after all, is a song about giving, help, hope, salvation and love.

And we never tire of going back and hearing different performances of this song. Originally, on Greetings from Asbury Park, Springsteen performed it at a moderate rock tempo. But some time early on in his live performances, the song became something else.

 In his famous 1974 Real Paper article, referring to the very moment this photo was taken, Jon Landau wrote, "He took his overpowering story of a suicide, “For You,” and sang it with just piano accompaniment and a voice that rang out to the very last row of the Harvard Square theatre." 

Two versions stand out to us. “For You” Live From Perth, February 5. 2014. And this stunning performance in England, Bruce Springsteen, Hammersmith Odeon 1975, which honestly, you should buy. It's especially poignant to see Clarence at the end of the video, coming back on stage, touching his friend as he walks by.

Home Base helps people who have made it possible for us all to dream of a day when the beauty of music can be one of the biggest things in our lives. Music is big, but recovery, help, and giving are big too. If you can donate to Home Base, or any organization that helps veterans, please do.

 

 

 

For your consideration

For Your Consideration: To collectors, art advisers, and those interested in art photography.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of a pivotal moment in rock and roll. On May 9. 1974 Bruce Springsteen performed at the Harvard Square Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

For collectors and art consultants, this presents a unique opportunity. Gallery 5.9.1974 is offering a limited edition 20 x 30  print of one of the most significant photographs of one of the most significant nights in rock and roll history.

This image was virtually unknown until recently, and it's historic context is complimented by its rarity and by it's outstanding technical qualities. The balance, light and focus of this photograph are stunning, especially considering the technology of the day and the primitive state of the concert lighting that night.

There are no other images, or recordings, of this 2nd show at the Harvard Square Theatre on May 9, 1974: the show Jon Landau attended, where he called Springsteen, "...rock and roll future...".

 

 

Bruce & Van & Bob

As we look deeper into the history of the legendary Harvard Square Theater, the setting for the May 9th show, one thing that always stands out is the rarity of concerts held there.  As a local movie theater, it was not one of the regular venues on tour routes.

When searching for who actually performed there, the two concerts we're certain occurred were Springsteen's "rock and roll future" show with Bonnie Raitt, and two months prior Van Morrison also played a well known set. Morrison had spent time in the area in the late 60’s, working on his masterpiece Astral Weeks, played with some Berkeley musicians, and he was looking to make a return visit. Though an established star by the mid 1970’s with hits like “Brown Eyed Girl” and “Moondance” he opted to play the small theatre as a kind of "thank you" to the area that had been his home several years before.

Barry Schneier was in attendance that night as well, capturing Morrison's moments on stage.  Though likely not as well known a night in his career as opening for Bonnie Raitt was for Springsteen, the performance of Astral Weeks was critically acclaimed.

Legend has it that Bob Dylan was also one of the few to play a set at the Cambridge theater.  Seen in this poster from his tour as the "Rolling Thunder Revue," he played in the late fall of 1975. 

With the likes of Bonnie Raitt, Van Morrison, and Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen is not in bad company as one of the few to play the Harvard Square Theater stage.

"I've seen the future of rock and roll management..."

When Bruce was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 he returned the favor. Here's a quote from his acceptance speech that night.

“I’ve seen the future of rock and roll management,” he said. “And its name is Jon Landau. I’ve got to return the favor there. That quote was … a mite burdensome for me, but as he often said, ‘That’s your job.’ But Jon’s given me something beyond friendship, beyond guidance — his intelligence, his sense of the truth, his recognition of my intelligence. We were worlds colliding. His creative ability as a producer, an editor, speechwriter earlier this evening, his ability to see through to the heart of matters both professional and personal, and the love that he’s given me has altered my life forever. What I hope to give to my fans with my music — a greater sense of themselves, and greater freedom — he with his talents and his abilities has done that for me. There’s no ‘thank you’ tonight that’s gonna do the job, and it’s a debt that I can’t repay, and one that I treasure owing.”

 


 

What goes into creating a fine art photographic print?

It’s a question that’s asked a lot especially in regards to photography. When George Eastman first brought photography to the masses he saw as a way for people to capture personal memories and images. Wikipedia defines fine art photography today as “photography created in accordance with the vision of the artist as photographer.” That is our mission with Gallery 591974. But the process of creating a fine art print is as important as the image itself.

 

The process of creating a traditional fiber based paper print involves chemistry. As with all chemical processes, deterioration and changes can occur over time. We utilize a process that is the same as that used by museums and art galleries around the world to extend the life and value of the print.

 

When silver gelatin photographic paper is exposed to light, the silver particles react. When processed in photochemistry, the exposed particles turn black and the unexposed particles are washed away. The secret to a museum quality print is to begin with the best materials possible and then use a rigorous hardening and wash process that eliminates the remaining unexposed silver. The extra step of selenium toning converts the remaining silver to silver selenide. This extends the life of the print even more as well as giving the blacks a deeper quality to them. The end result is not just the richest possible looking print but one whose life is extended even longer to well over one hundred years, protecting your investment for generations to come.

 

Jersey Proud Part Two

Frank Stefanko shared a story about hearing Bruce Springsteen's music for the first time. His songs referenced streets and locales he knew well. He decided he had to meet this guy some day and photograph him. He couldn't believe a rock musician was not just referencing his home state but proudly embracing it.

NBC Newscaster Brian Williams has similar feelings and maybe even more so. Brian grew up on the Jersey shore. He worked as a dispatcher for the local fire department and never imagined anything much more than that. But music was a big part of his life and when he first saw Bruce at the Stone Pony in 1975 he was awe struck. He couldn't believe the music and couldn't believe he was talking about "my town".

Today Brian is as passionate about Bruce's music as he was in 1975. He feels attending an E Street Band concert is like being a "guest in this house of worship".  In 2008, while just wrapping up the NBC Nightly News his cell phone rang. It was a number he didn't recognize. On the other end was Patti Sciafla. Patti says to Brian, "We think we're going to have a great night tonight at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Banks. Would you come down and intro the band" Patti had organized the event as a fundraiser to help refurbish the theater, herself being a native of Red Bank.

As Brian puts it, he believed he was on a noble mission and proceeded to break every state, local and federal speed law on his way down. For him, the night was not just special because of the show, but for him personally because as a child, his mother had performed there.

In the front row that night was the current governor of New Jersey, John Corzine. And in the balcony, was soon to be governor, Chris Christie. But as Brian says, Governors may come and but  the First Lady of New Jersey will always be Patti. 

Jersey Proud

At the opening night of Bruce Springsteen A Photographic Journey, Bob Santelli, Executive Director of the Grammy Museum hosted a panel discussion with photographers Frank Stefanko, Eric Meola, Barry Schneier, Ed Gallucci and Danny Clinch. An interesting point of discussion was what Bruce had done to elevate the nation's, and the world's for that matter, impression of New Jersey. Bob, Frank and Danny are all NewJersey natives and commented how New Jersey had been the butt of jokes for years, sometimes even referred to as the "armpit of the nation". Bob Santelli told this story to make his point on what Bruce had done for the state.

When Bruce was signed by Columbia Records, he had been playing the Greenwich Village circuit at the time. Executives at Columbia wanted to position him as being from New York City. Bruce would have no part of that and insisted he be recognized as from New Jersey. So insistent was he to make sure his home state was recognized that he aptly titled his first album "Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ" and the placement of the postcard on the cover was his way of saying to the world that he was Jersey proud.

A Hard Working Man

Bruce Springsteen is a hard worker and always has been. Early in his career stories circulated that when he first started playing arenas he would circle the facility during sound check to ensure that everyone, no matter where they sat, would hear great sound. He believed that with what they were paying for a ticket they deserved the best show he could provide.

When Frank Stefanko got the assignment to shoot the cover for "Darkness on the Edge of Town" he figured he'd have Bruce for a few hours. Bruce arrived at his Frank's home at 9 in the morning with his "wardrobe" ( a plaid shirt, a tee shirt and a leather jacket) in a brown paper bag. They began to work taking shots around Frank's home and didn't stop until close to 6 PM. Frank said Bruce worked as hard as he did that day to ensure they got the right shot and was as focused on doing it right and as Frank was. Bruce came to work that day as he does today. His work ethic remains the same.

Stories from Tulsa

Barry Schneier is currently at the Woody Guthrie Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma for the opening of Bruce Springsteen: A Photographic Journey. The exhibit is being curated by the GRAMMY Museum and features the work of Danny Clinch, Ed Gallucci, Eric Meola, Pamela Springsteen, Frank Stefanko as well as Barry himself. 

Needless to say, an impressive lineup of photographers who have worked with and known Springsteen through many different stages of his career. Barry will be sharing some stories of his own and the other photographers throughout the opening.

Here's one from Frank Stefanko, who shot Springsteen during his early career:

Frank went to college with Patti Smith and has been friends ever since. They were hanging at a club in NY where Bruce was playing. He had no record deal at the time. A virtual unknown. Frank went over to Patti and said “You've got to come downstairs and see this guy. I tell you.. he’s going to be a star”

Some time later when Bruce released his first album, “Greetings from Asbury Park”, Frank receives a package one day. Inside is a copy of the album. The original album pressing included a set of two-sided postcards. Frank flips it a postcard over and on the back is a hand written note. “To Frank, This is for you. I understand from Patti I’m going to be a star someday.  Thanks,  Bruce Springsteen."