by Zachary Swickey
Bruce Springsteen, one of the most revered artists making music, has revealed that he had suicidal thoughts in 1982, the year that his bleak-but-iconic album Nebraska was released, according to a new profile in this month’s New Yorker.
Springsteen suffered bouts of severe depression in the early ’80s, according to his friend and biographer Dave Marsh.
“He was feeling suicidal. The depression wasn’t shocking, per se. He was on a rocket ride, from nothing to something, and now you are getting your ass kissed day and night,” Marsh writes. “You might start to have some inner conflicts about your real self-worth.”
“My issues weren’t as obvious as drugs,” Springsteen told the New Yorker. “Mine were different, they were quieter – just as problematic, but quieter. With all artists, because of the undertow of history and self-loathing, there is a tremendous push toward self-obliteration that occurs onstage.”
“It’s both things: there’s a tremendous finding of the self while also an abandonment of the self at the same time. You are free of yourself for those hours; all the voices in your head are gone,” he added.
The profile also reveals that The Boss began seeing a psychotherapist in 1982, just as his sixth studio album Nebraska was released.
Springsteen’s seventeenth studio album, Wrecking Ball was released in March of this year and took the #1 spot on the Billboard charts.