How to Start a Music Band with Springsteen’s E-Street in Mind?

Since its foundation in 1972, The E Street Band has been one of the most influential ensembles in popular music.

Best known as Bruce Springsteen’s backing band, it’s changed its lineup several times in this span of time.

What has survived all these years is the quality of music and the great chemistry between the members.


It’s interesting that most of the members who have played in this band are local musicians from New Jersey. It was even named after a street in New Jersey.

So, how can somebody follow in their footsteps in this day and age to form such a band?


Playing with local musicians

Every era has its own specific trends. These special features form a certain zeitgeist.

At the beginning of the 1970s, New York and its surroundings were established as the music capital of the world. The Beatles had already paved the way for the development of rock ‘n’ roll music.

Their influence on music worldwide was unprecedented.


Therefore, it’s no wonder that Bruce Springsteen didn’t have to search too much for outstanding musicians. He was already standing at the well of music wisdom, so he was able to add some great players to his bandwagon.

In line with that, if you want to make an impact on the local audience, start working with local musicians. You’ll share some common interests and experiences.

What’s more, they’ll understand the specific local poetics that you might be using in your work.


Relying on local toponyms and events

New Jersey is one of the trademarks of Springsteen’s lyrics.

On the one hand, he often mentions the local toponyms like Fairview or the New Jersey Turnpike

On the other, he populates his songs with the atmosphere typical for New Jersey of that time.

Even though he has lived across the US in the last forty years, his hometown and state have had a great influence on his work.

So, music rookies might need to rely more on their local toponyms and events. We all want to change the world with the guitar in our hands but perhaps it’s easier to do that if you start from the local context.

You can write about interesting people from your hometown and add some charisma to their characters. For instance, stories from the local newspapers can help you get inspiration for such songs.

And if you work with local musicians, you’ll all know more such stories and events.

Who knows, maybe you’ll come up with your own version of Springsteen’s “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out”, inspired by your own place and people.


Working on in-band cohesion

Each member of The E Street Band has had some side projects since its foundation. Some of them have been working as session musicians all this time. They even disbanded in 1989, only to reunite in 1999. In that period, Springsteen was working on other projects.

However, when they started playing together again in 1999, the spirit of Jersey nights was there again.

Since 1999, they’ve recorded seven albums, many of which were highly acclaimed by critics.

All this wouldn’t be possible if they hadn’t had the necessary cohesion.

They often say that The Boss is a reasonable band leader. While insisting on quality and high performance, he and the band members are true friends.

So, that’s something every new kid on the music block should take into consideration. It’s important to nurture positive relations between team members even when you aren’t satisfied with your mutual work altogether.

Moreover, band founders and leaders should show respect to their bandmates’ music ideas. Can you imagine Springsteen’s songs without saxophone solos? Most of them are the product of late Clarence Clemons’ creativity.

Therefore, let other band members express their creativity and support their contributions to the band.


Defining the looks and styles

Bruce Springsteen began as a poetic outcast in the 1970s only to transform into an all-American hero in the 1980s.

In the 2000s and 2010s, he has been playing the role of a cool rock daddy.

So, The Boss has always promoted a certain style and attitude.

The members of The E Street Band didn’t fall behind either. From Clemons’ chic suits in the 70s to Van Zandt’s pure rock style, the band has always been an eclectic mixture of visual influences.

This is something every new band leader should bear in mind. You don’t have to be pretentious to leave a strong impression on your audience. For instance, you can get dressed for your gigs in a second-hand store.

On the other hand, you can choose a particular visual detail and have it printed on T-shirts for your gigs.

What’s more, you should think about the visual branding of your band. As suggested by the Houston-based logo experts, it’s important to define your visual brand at the beginning of your career. Together with the font that you choose and the illustrations, it will form a special branding unit for your band.



Now you’ve learned some tricks that helped Bruce and his E-Street Band last for almost fifty years.

The only thing you need to do now is to keep writing songs and working with the people you like and appreciate. The audience always feels if people on the stage are here only to play the notes or they share some common values.

If band members get on well, the songs they write and perform usually have some additional flavors.

Therefore, do your best to be a fair and friendly band leader but also make sure that you always meet the expectations of your audience. That way, you’ll get as close to The E Street Band as possible.


Author Byline: Liam Collins is a tech pundit and Web enthusiast working at He spends most of his time reading and writing about the current affairs in the world of information technology. When he isn’t working, he likes going for long bike rides and walks in nature.


/ Popnable Media
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