I found Bruce music quite late in my life. In 1997 my cousin and I went to the States, for our first “on the road” trip. She was in charge of the soundtrack, she put in the luggage some tapes, and one of them was Born in the USA. I knew the name of course, but I had never really LISTENED to him, before. Long story short, that tape was the one we played the most during our travel, at the end it was completely ruined. We spent hours driving on the roads of America singing No surrender and Darlington County at the loudest possible volume, shouting all the Sha la la in the chorus, raising our hands and waving them out of the windows, clapping the tempo on the dashboard, laughing and smiling. I remember that the people in the cars driving alongside looked at us quite puzzled, possibly thinking we were drunk or stoned. But we smiled at them and waved our hands in greeting, and they passed by laughing and waving back: it’s nice to think we infected everyone around us with our joy! We were just so young and happy, so fully alive, so incredibly overflowing with joy in a country we loved and dreamt of for many many years. And Bruce music was there with us, to show us that we were Born in the USA. Of course I know that’s not what the song is about at all; but in that moment we were there, alive in America, and all the meaning of life was in those songs and in that music.
I’m not quite sure I’ve ever had a similar powerful feeling of happiness in being alive, after that.