Dean Men Make No Sales

The late Bruce Springsteen did not appear on Saturday Night Live. And don't let the Japanese convince you he did.

While I laud our industrious techno-fiends across the Pacific for their spectacular accomplishment in rendering Brucezilla so lifelike, I question their decision to attempt to ape his music as well. They might have pulled off the robo-Boss scam without a hitch if they'd stuck to "live" performances of previously recorded material. Maybe in Japan they can't tell the difference; nobody I know who has heard Human Touch would be fooled into thinking it was Bruce. One quick listen to Born to Run will tell you that. But Sony's got a lot of money tied up in "Springsteen" and they aren't about to see it go to waste while the man still has a good name to exploit, even if the actual artist is no longer drawing breath.

I wouldn't be surprised if they're still mad at us for inventing Disneyland first, and have employed Brucezilla to gain some measure of revenge. "Stupid Americans," I can hear them hissing in the boardrooms at Sony, "they'll never know the difference. They want Bruce, we give them Bruce."

But I don't think we'll fall for it. They never understood the American mindset, especially as it pertains to a songwriter like Springsteen. You can't expect a nation full of mathematicians and engineers to appreciate making love in the dirt, racing in the street, or the giddiness of pulling into Darlington County on the Fourth of July. That's why they flock to the oversize amusement parks in Anaheim and Orlando - they like their thrills clean, risk-free, predictable. Who cares if it's all fake, robots and holograms and molded fiberglass. As another great songwriter, who died a decade or so before Springsteen did, once put it, they "...never understood that it ain't no good, you shouldn't let other people get your kicks for you."

Bruce Springsteen was a hell of a songwriter, one of the best ever. Sometimes on a Friday I like to get together with friends, have a few beers, listen to Greetings from Asbury Park, and talk about the old times. Gone in the wink of a young girl's eye. Sometimes I feel like crying, I start laughing thinking about it. Time slips away and leaves you with nothin' mister but boring stories of glory days.

Look at Brucezilla.

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