Jude Acers Remembers Bruce Springsteen

Photo credit: Takahiro Kyono


I was living the life of an aspiring musician. A circumstantial bohemian – and as I have already mentioned I didn’t do any drugs or drink…one of my ex-roommates, a fellow guitarist would end it all with a gunshot to the head after a short life of ingesting too many chemicals and ending up a wasted talent on the skids. I’d seen people mentally ruined, gone and not coming back. I WAS BARELY HOLDING MY OWN AS IT WAS ……………… I couldn’t imagine introducing unknown chemicals into my system. I needed control and those ever-elusive boundaries. I was afraid of myself, what I might do or what might happen to me. I’d already experienced enough personal chaos to not go in search of the unknown. Over all my years in bars an out- of-line drunk in my face was the only thing that could get me fighting mad. I’d seen my dad and that was enough. I wasn’t looking for stimulants to help me lose or find anything. Music was going to get me as high as I needed to go. I had friends who were real drug experimenting radicals and then I had my construction-worker brother-in-law, who, with the exception of bashing longhairs like myself, had no “sixties” experience whatsoever. He remained his whole life a man of the fifties (with greatly increased tolerance, however.) I was a faux hippie (free love was all right), but the counterculture stood by definition in opposition to the conservative blue-collar experience I’d had. I felt caught between two camps and I didn’t really fit in either, or maybe, I just fit in both.

From the electrifying 2016 best selling memoir BORN TO RUN by Bruce Springsteen … who arrived in Bradley Beach, California (1969) … crashing on the floor of the surfboard warehouse of manufacturer/inventor Carl Virgin “Tinker -Surfin Safari” West …  later selling 35 million BORN IN THE USA albums worldwide in 1984 alone. (Acers note: Springsteen, rock promoter Bill Graham, the Jefferson Airplane, The Doors, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Beach Boys, The Byrds, Pulitzer prize winning glib columnist Herb Caen, Ferlinghetti and City Lights bookstore, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin, The Beatles, film titans Lucas and Coppola, the Berkeley Barb all hit San Francisco like a nuclear bomb 1964-1974.)

Jude Acers

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