Friday, July 04, 2008

Finally busted, Madam Marie

ASBURY PARK, N.J. (AP) - Bruce Springsteen is paying tribute to a boardwalk fortuneteller he made famous in a song. Madam Marie Castello, who told fortunes on the Asbury Park Boardwalk in New Jersey, died recently. She was 93. Springsteen wrote about her in his 1973 song "4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)". In a posting on his Web site, Springsteen remembers Castello as a boardwalk fixture at the Temple of Knowledge."I'd sit across from her on the metal guard rail bordering the beach, and watched as she led the day-trippers into the small back room where she would unlock a few of the mysteries of their future," he writes. "She always told me mine looked pretty good - she was right". Springsteen adds: "Over here on E Street, we will miss her". On the Net:

I misspent my teens in a British seaside town and spent many a summer 'banging on them pleasure machines' but Asbury Park, New Jersey sounded like an impossibly bigger-budget widescreen remake of the cathode ray tube view I had in Paignton, Devon - the vistas sweeping, the cars and the girls sleek and fast and the boardwalk long, long, long. We had a pier. Still, Bruce knew too he had to get out or get caught, and he was right, I knew he was right, because so did I.

You can almost smell the candyfloss ('cotton candy'?), frying onions and generator two-stroke in this and I know the stuff is easy to parody and a soft target to mock, but damn it I liked Bruce when he was all epic/poetic.

Have a nice day U.S of A.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band - '4th Of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)' (1973)


  1. Nowt wrong with a bit of Bruce. In fact Rosalita is up there in the list of songs I take with me wherever I go!

  2. I associate 'The Wild, The Innocent And The E Street Shuffle' with (probably imaginary) long, hot summers, and not just because of this track. Got hold of the Live At Main Point boot a while back on which he does fab versions of some of that material, bless him.

  3. i like a bit of broooooce too and heard a smashing version of this by the hollies the other day.
    the nearest i've got to american seaside was santa monica and it was rubbish. not a patch on blackpool. or morecambe for that matter. or even paignton.

  4. How wierd is Paignton Pier Flash!

    It reminds me of many days misspent playing the proto-video games like Donkey Kong on that and Clacton pier. It certainly wasn't
    Springsteen in the background but it certainly was some thumping rock and roll. Although I will forever associate Popcorn by Hot Butter with Clacton pier as one year they had a trapeze act on the pier that did their entire routine to that song, every hour, on the hour

  5. Oh and P.s. I've never really been a fan of Springbean as when I was at Uni he was the man of the moment and everybody said they had seen him in concert. I was just investigating the Lemon Kittens just to be wilfully different

  6. As is your constitutional Right dear boy.

  7. Dropped by to say no need to make excuses for posting Brucie, but others have beaten me to it.

    No 'Meanwhile' tonight?

  8. I like Bruce too, but I hated all that "The Boss" malarkey.

  9. This IS where I grew up...and sadly, the glorious era the postcard depicts was all but over when I was coming up. It was a very sad, dreary place.

    But my, do I miss it.

  10. Another thing...I never was a Bruce fan back then either...anything BUT Bruce fit my niche. (Clash, Ramones, Elvis C.)

    A funny thing happened along the way however, when I began to miss 'home'...I came to miss Bruce too. Finally saw him live not all that long ago as well. I kinda choked up. (TVD: softie!)


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