When asked he how still finds inspiration for songwriting after 50 years on the job, Bruce Springsteen said “You have your antenna out. You’re just walking through the world and you’re picking up these signals of emotions and spirit and history and events, today’s events and past remembrances. These things you divine from the air are all intangible elements: spirit, emotion, history. These are the tools of the songwriter’s trade before he even picks up the pen.
“People who are very attuned to that atmosphere usually end up being artists of some sort. Because they’re so attuned to it, they have a desire to record it. If that desire to record it is strong enough, you learn a language to do so. Whether it’s paintings, films, songs, poetry….
“My antenna is picking up so much information, I need to find a way to disperse it. So, I needed to learn a language that does that. And the languages of art, film, records, whatever you want to call it—all those languages do that. And you get to pass it on to your listeners or fans. That’s how it begins.”
– Bruce Springsteen, in an interview with Robert Love, AARP Magazine, Oct/Nov 2020