Bruce Springsteen, born on September 23, 1949, is an American singer, songwriter, and musician. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential and iconic figures in rock music. Springsteen's music combines elements of rock and roll, folk, and Americana, often featuring introspective lyrics that explore the struggles and hopes of the working class.
Springsteen was born and raised in Freehold, New Jersey. He started playing guitar at a young age and began performing in local bands during his teenage years. In the early 1970s, he formed the E Street Band, which became his longtime backing band and a crucial part of his musical sound.
In 1973, Springsteen released his debut album, "Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.," followed by his breakthrough album, "Born to Run," in 1975. The album propelled him to stardom and established him as a significant voice in American rock music. Springsteen's passionate and energetic live performances, often lasting for several hours, gained him a devoted fan base and earned him the nickname "The Boss."
Throughout his career, Springsteen has released numerous critically acclaimed albums, including "Darkness on the Edge of Town" (1978), "The River" (1980), "Born in the U.S.A." (1984), and "The Rising" (2002). His music tackles themes of blue-collar life, societal issues, and personal introspection, resonating with audiences around the world.
Springsteen's contributions to music have been recognized with numerous awards, including 20 Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, and induction into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is also known for his philanthropy and activism, advocating for social and political causes.
Beyond his music, Springsteen has authored a memoir titled "Born to Run" (2016), which became a bestseller. His live performances continue to captivate audiences, and he remains an influential and beloved figure in the world of rock music.
Lesson 1: Born In The USA - Electric Guitar Lesson
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Lesson 2: Born To Run - Electric Guitar Lesson
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Lesson 3: Born To Run by Bruce Springsteen - Guitar Lesson
Bruce Springsteen is one of the most iconic American songwriters of the 20th century and this song is a perfect example of why that’s the case.
With an epic riff that’s easy to play based on a simple power chord section, the foundation of this tune can’t get much easier. But there are some ultra fast guitar licks that will challenge your technique and the sax solo transcribed for guitar will stretch your rhythm and chops to a degree you didn’t know you had!
Lesson 4: Dancing In The Dark - Bruce Springsteen - Guitar Lesson
Dancing In The Dark is a song written and performed by American artist Bruce Springsteen, and the biggest hit of his best-selling album ‘Born In The U.S.A.’
This lesson covers the chords in the key of G, the progression and the strumming, and shows how to incorporate the main synthesizer riff.
We also take a look at a cover version performed by Scottish singer-songwriter Amy MacDonald, which features a lovely fingerpicking arrangement in the same key.
Lesson 5: Downbound Train - Bruce Springsteen - Guitar Lesson
Downbound Train is a song by American singer-songwriter Bruce Springsteen and appears on his 1984 ‘Born In The U.S.A.’ album.
Like many of Springsteen’s songs, when stripped down they appear to be relatively easy and straightforward. In this case this is true for both the fretting as well as the strumming hand.
The arrangement features 4 chords in the key of Em, where the guitar is capoed on the 3rd fret. Add a basic rockstrum and you’re off to a good start.
We also take a look at the signature intro riff, which requires a bit more accuracy from the strumming hand.
Lesson 6: Fire - Electric Guitar Lesson
Fire is a really cool song from Jimi Hendrix's album "Are You Experienced" released in 1967. This one's really cool because it uses several different songwriting and playing techniques. There's extensive use of dead notes in the beginning riff that helps to flesh out the rhythm and establish a swaying groove that moves back and forth, also utilizing the space between the notes to great effect. In the verse, there's mostly drums and a vocal melody, using the space in between to fill it in with B.B. King style licks. Even throughout the bridge, the playing is very sparse, mostly consisting of long extended chords that create a base for him to sing over. The licks that he plays in this song are also very minimal in their note choices, getting their phrasing and emotion from the note bends, which he gave a unique vocal quality using long bends and slides.
Lesson 7: My Hometown
My Hometown is the last track of Bruce Springsteen’s commercially most successful (1984) ’Born In The USA’ album.
This lesson teaches how to play the song in the keys of A, G, and C.
We of course take a look at the key of A, as done on the original recording. The progression features only four chords and a relatively simple strumming pattern.
To make it a little easier for beginners, one could also play it in the key of G (Capo II).
Another good option would be the key of C, capo V, because I bumped into one recording of Bruce playing it like that on the guitar. This puts the progression in the absolute key of F, two whole steps lower than A, which is how he occasionally performs it on piano as well. Instead of strumming it at the speed of 8th’s, he does it with double time instead.
The song is synthesizer-based and features chords with a melody line throughout most of the arrangement. The main focus of this lesson is to copy that on the guitar. We do that by fingerpicking at least the intro and 1st verse. This, of course, makes it all a bit harder to play.
All in all, there is a little bit of everything for everyone.