Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen (born September 23, 1949) is an American singer, songwriter, and musician. He has released 21 studio albums during a career spanning six decades, most of which feature his backing band, the E Street Band. He is an originator of heartland rock, a genre combining mainstream rock music with poetic and socially conscious lyrics that tell a narrative about working-class American life. Nicknamed "The Boss", he is known for his lyrics and energetic concerts, with performances that can last more than four hours.
Springsteen released his first two albums, Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. and The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle, in 1973; neither earned him a large audience. He then changed his style and achieved worldwide popularity with Born to Run (1975). This was followed by Darkness on the Edge of Town (1978) and The River (1980), which topped the Billboard 200 chart. After the solo album Nebraska (1982), he reunited with his E Street Band for Born in the U.S.A. (1984), which became his most commercially successful album and one of the best-selling albums of all time. Seven of its singles reached the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, including the title track. Springsteen mostly hired session musicians for the recording of his next three albums, Tunnel of Love (1987), Human Touch (1992), and Lucky Town (1992). He reassembled the E Street Band for Greatest Hits (1995), then recorded the acoustic album The Ghost of Tom Joad (1995) and the EP Blood Brothers (1996).
Seven years after releasing The Ghost of Tom Joad—the longest gap between any of his studio albums—Springsteen released The Rising (2002), which he dedicated to the victims of the 9/11 attacks. He released two more folk albums, Devils & Dust (2005) and We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions (2006), followed by two more albums with the E Street Band: Magic (2007) and Working on a Dream (2009). The next two albums, Wrecking Ball (2012) and High Hopes (2014), topped album charts worldwide. From 2017 to 2018, and again in 2021, Springsteen performed the critically acclaimed one-man show Springsteen on Broadway which saw him perform some of his songs and tell stories from his 2016 autobiography; the album version was released in 2018. He then released the solo album Western Stars (2019), the album Letter to You (2020) with the E Street Band, and a solo cover album Only the Strong Survive (2022). Letter to You reached No. 2 in the U.S. and made Springsteen the first artist to score a top five album across six consecutive decades.
Listed among the album era's most prominent acts, Springsteen has sold more than 71 million in the U.S. and over 140 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling music artists of all time. He has earned numerous awards, including 20 Grammy Awards, two Golden Globes, an Academy Award, and a Special Tony Award. He was inducted into both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999, received the Kennedy Center Honors in 2009, named MusiCares person of the year in 2013, and awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama in 2016. He ranked 23rd on Rolling Stone's list of the Greatest Artists of All Time, which described him as being "the embodiment of rock & roll".
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