Glancing in the bark

Move over, Jesus, it's time to make way for BRUUUUUUUUUUUUCE!

Compare and contrast:


An artsy B&W photo I took of some silver birch bark yesterday.

Silver birch bark

Bruce Springsteen.

I hope you'll understand why I can't reveal the precise location of the holy silver birch. We don't want middle-aged stadium rock fans turning up and hanging their bandannas from its branches in tribute to the Boss.


Bit of a major scoop for Gruts, this one…

You know that Nigel Tufnel from out of Spinal Tap?

Nigel Tufnel

Nigel Tufnel from out of Spinal Tap.


It turns out that, not only is Nigel Tufnel an accomplished guitarist, but he's also a talented drummer. Understandably, given Spinal Tap's tragic history with drummers, Tufnel has never dared to play the drums on stage with the band.

However—how's this for a scoop?—I have managed to unearth rare footage of Nigel Tufnel playing drums for Nils Lofgren from out of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. The clip is taken from The Old Grey Whistle Test, May 1976:

Tap meets Springsteen: how Gruts is that?

Springsteen and he Photos from the road: Cape Town #1
Photographer Jo Lopez shares pictures from Bruce & The E Street Band’s first concert in Cape Town, South Africa, on January 26, 2014.

That's right: Bruce has been gigging in Sith Ifrica. But check out the photos very carefully, and see if there's anyone else there you recognise.

OK, here's a clue:

Bruce and Bill

Bruce and Bill in Cape Town last month.

I have to hand it to the Boss: Cape Town is a hell of a long way to travel, just to (finally) get to shake Bill's hand.

Surf's up

The Official Bruce Springsteen Website: Notes from the road: Leeds

As an enchanted full moon week in the British Isles and end of tour madness continues to thoroughly infuse Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, tonight [Wed, 24-Jul-2013] they opened the brand new, cozily intimate (13,500) Leeds Arena…

For “Hungry Heart” Bruce went to the back of the pit and greeted those in the theater-style seats, who were standing and cheering enthusiastically. He took the opportunity of being in such a small, intimate setting to crowd surf to the stage

I can confirm that the Boss did indeed crowd surf.

Bruce Springsteen surfs the crowd

Bruce Springsteen surfs the crowd.

Bruce Springsteen is 63 years old.

Sublety and subterfuge

Have you seen there's a new book out claiming that Bruce Springsteen brought down the Berlin Wall (Amazon uk | .com)?

I like Bruce, but that's taking things a bit far. It took more than Cadillac Ranch to bring an end to communism. Yes, it will have helped, but winning the Cold War required more subtlety and subterfuge than that. Some of us were working unnoticed, behind the scenes, prodding here, pulling the right string there.

I can't go into details, obviously, but I can reveal that I did once sign a petition. Gorbachev was big on petitions. The biro is mightier than the Fender, remember that.

And, while we're at it, who do you think it was who leaked that Murdoch tape this week? I couldn't possibly comment, but work it out. It's not exactly Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (Amazon uk | .com).