Bruce Springsteen opens up on mental health struggles
Bruce Springsteen says he was "crushed" from depression – and admits he's reminded of his own mortality when the curtain comes down on every show
Bruce Springsteen has revealed that he still worries about his mental health after admitting his battle with depression left him "crushed" a few years ago.
The 66-year-old singer-songwriter says his wife Patti Scialfa observes his bouts of mental illness as "a freight train bearing down" on him. He also describes his inner struggle as a car with multiple versions of himself inside – and there's no way of knowing which one is in the driver's seat.
He tells Vanity Fair: "I was crushed between 60 and 62, good for a year and out again from 63 to 64. Not a good record.
"Whoever you've been and wherever you've been, it never leaves you. I always picture it as a car. All your selves are in it. And a new self can get in, but the old selves can't ever get out. The important thing is, who's got their hands on the wheel at any given moment?"
He adds: “Playing a show brings a tremendous amount of euphoria – and the danger of it is, there’s always that moment, comes every night, where you think, 'Hey, man, I’m gonna live forever.' You’re feeling all your power.
"And then you come offstage, and the main thing you realise is ‘Well, that’s over.’ Mortality sets back in. I realise there is a finite amount of time in which I’m going to continue to do what I’m doing."
Speaking of his family's history of mental illness, which include agoraphobia and hair-pulling disorders that were largely ignored or left undiagnosed, he expresses fears that he'd end up like his late father – who he describes as "a bit of a Bukowski character."
He adds: "You don't know the illness's parameters. Can I get sick enough to where I become a lot more like my father than I thought I might?"
Springsteen also reveals he's set to launch a solo album next year, describing the as-yet-untitled record as "more of a singer-songwriter kind of record."
He adds that he was inspired by “pop records with a lot of strings and instrumentation" – particularly the work of Jimmy Webb and Glen Campbell in the 60s.
Bruce Springsteen Chapter And Verse tracklist
- Baby I – The Castiles (previously unreleased)
- You Can't Judge A Book By The Cover – The Castiles (previously unreleased)
- He's Guilty (The Judge Song) – Steel Mill (previously unreleased)
- Ballad Of Jesse James" – The Bruce Springsteen Band (previously unreleased)
- Henry Boy (previously unreleased)
- Growin' Up
- 4th Of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)
- Born To Run
- The River
- My Father's House
- Born In The USA
- Brilliant Disguise
- Living Proof
- The Ghost Of Tom Joad
- The Rising
- Long Time Comin'
- Wrecking Ball
Bruce Springsteen remaining tour dates 2016
Sep 07: Philadelphia Citizens Bank Park, PA
Sep 09 Philadelphia Citizens Bank Park, PA
Sep 11: Pittsburgh Consol Energy Center, PA
Sep 14: Foxborough Gillette Stadium, MA