Charles R. Cross Interview
(Springsteen Book Chronicles The Man and His Music)

Charles R. Cross is recognized as a leading authority on the subject of Bruce Springsteen. From Cross and the people at Harmony Books comes "Backstreets: Springsteen, The Man and His Music." The book chronicles the history of the man who will be at the Carrier Dome in concert this week.

Q: Why is Bruce Springsteen accorded legendary status?
A: Unlike most rock artists, Bruce Springsteen has always tried to use his music to deal with personal issues; whether that be adolescent angst--his first three albums; or the turmoil of divorce-"Tunnel of Love”; he's revealed himself in ways few other artists have. His audience identifies with his songs and have a personal stake in his music. Springsteen's music has not had the cultural impact of Elvis or The Beatles partially because this is a different age and there are only so many barriers left to break down.

Q: What attracted you to Bruce Springsteen?
A: Springsteen first interested me because he combined the lyricism of Bob Dylan with the soul of Van Morrison and made it all sound like a Roy Orbison song; which is pretty much what Bruce said Orbison himself did to him. I'm not sure, however, 18 years down the road, I'd say he's everything a rock star should be. In the past few years Bruce has chosen to retreat from the world into his own shell; and his music has not been as political as I would have liked myself.

Q: It would seem that Bruce Springsteen has achieved everything a musician would want to achieve. What do you think is next for him?
A: That's obviously a question for him to answer. Personally I'd like to see a smaller acoustic tour. He recently suggested that in an interview. I think he needs to concentrate on putting out the best albums he can and forget about commercial considerations; which is exactly why "Lucky Town" is a much better album than "Human Touch."

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