Bruce Springsteen Can Predict the Future, Says Australia's Deputy Prime Minister

Ever since World Cup-predicting Paul the Octopus went to that great fried calamari appetizer in the sky, the world has been adrift and directionless. How are we to know what is supposed to happen? Ask a tic-tac-toe-playing chicken?

It turns out that the answer has been in front of us all along, singing into a microphone alongside a man with a nightgown wrapped around his skull. Yes, Australia's Deputy Prime Minister, Wayne Swan, says that Bruce Springsteen predicted the U.S. economic crisis way before loser economists who play concerts for only, like, three hours before giving up.

"You can hear Springsteen singing about the shifting foundations of the U.S. economy which the economists took much longer to detect, and which of course everyone is talking about now," Swan said, according to The Guardian.

Swan cited Bruuuuuuce's song "Badlands" as an example of this, particularly the lyrics, "Poor man wanna be rich/Rich man wanna be king/And a king ain't satisfied/Till he rules everything." This highly specific prediction is far more clear than any of the gibberish Nostradamus snarfed out in his day and very clearly refers to the collapse of 2008. But this can't be a fluke. What other world events has The Boss (no relation to Rick Ross) predicted in his songs?

Well, Swan, who can be seen below in his primary role as Australia's chief knife identifier, hasn't said so far.

But a quick flip through Bruce's catalogue proves to be a veritable codex of our shared future. Some examples:

Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?

When Springsteen released this song in 1973, there was no way for him to have known that the Twin Cities Metro Transit bus number 4 would eventually stop at the 82nd Street Transit center as the terminus of its route. And yet, somehow he knew.

Born to Run

Bruce put this one out in 1975, an astonishing 11 years before the birth of Usain Bolt. Though Bolt set his school's record in the 100m when he was only twelve, there was still no obvious way for Springsteen to know how good of a runner Bolt would be before he was born, except if he were clairvoyant.

American Skin (41 Shots)

The common perception of this 2001 release was that this song was written as a response to the fatal shooting of Amadou Diallo. But an early demo version dating back to the Darkness on the Edge of Town sessions is nearly the same as the final version. Eerie prediction or self-fulfilled prophecy? One wonders that if Bruce had titled the song "American Skin (0 Shots)", Diallo would still be alive today.

Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)

Bruce sings, "Ah, Sloppy Sue and Big Bones Billy, they'll be comin' up for air. / We're gonna play some pool, skip some school, act real cool." It wasn't until early the next year that Sloppy Sue and Big Bones Billy spectacularly failed to set a record for holding their breath underwater. While no one expected much from Sue, the same was not true of Billy; many commentators at the time expected a new record from him, predicting that his freakishly large bones would help him stay underwater longer than most.

Hungry Heart

This song came out in 1989. When he wrote the lyrics, "La la la la la la / Ohhh yeah / La la la la la la," it was a full sixteen years before Russian cosmonaut Valeri Polyakov would la la la la la ohhh yeah la la la la la la.

Want to know what the future has in store for you? Punch in some Bruce down at the juke and start placing those sports bets.

Follow Crossfade on Facebook and Twitter @Crossfade_SFL

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >