The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum


jim henke :: Blog

Exclusive Bruce Springsteen Interview Clip (4 of 8)

Thursday, September 3: 5:08 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke
Bruce Springsteen exhibit now open at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Chief Curator Jim Henke talks to Bruce Springsteen

This is the fourth clip in a series of eight interview audio clips with Springsteen that we will post over the next several weeks.

In this portion of my interview, Bruce Springsteen talks about the recording session he did when he was auditioning for Columbia Records. The session took place on May 2, 1972. The “John” who Bruce refers to is the legendary A&R man John Hammond, who oversaw the session and, ultimately, signed Bruce to Columbia. A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Hammond also signed Bob Dylan and played a major role in launching the careers of Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Stevie Ray Vaughan and countless others. The Springsteen exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum includes the original tapes and tape boxes from the audition session. In addition, a listening station in the exhibit enables visitors to listen to eight of the songs Bruce recorded that day.

Click here to listen to this clip of the Springsteen interview.

Check back next week for interview clip number five where Bruce Springsteen talks about his famed Fender Esquire guitar, which is currently on display at ...


continue Categories: Exclusive Interviews

Exclusive Bruce Springsteen Interview Clips (2,3 of 8)

Thursday, August 27: 5:38 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke
Castiles soap box from the Springsteen exhibit. Photo: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum/ Design

Chief Curator Jim Henke talks to Bruce Springsteen

This is the second and third clip in a series of eight interview audio clips with Springsteen that we will post over the next several weeks.

In this portion of my interview, Bruce Springsteen talks about his first recording session with his band the Castiles. The group, which Bruce joined when he was a 14-year-old sophomore at Freehold High School and which was named after a brand of soap, went into a studio to record two songs, “That’s What You Get” and “Baby I.” Both songs were written by Bruce and George Theiss. The single was never released, but an acetate of it is in the Springsteen exhibit at the Rock Hall.

Click here to listen to Springsteen talk about recording with the Castiles.

The Upstage Club was a popular musicians’ hangout in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Bruce Springsteen played there frequently, and his band Child came together at the club. As Bruce explains in this section of my interview, the club stayed open until five a.m., and musicians would show up there after playing gigs at other clubs and then jam until the early-morning hours. One of the more ...


continue Categories: Exclusive Interviews

The Late, Great Les Paul

Friday, August 21: 5:40 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke

Terry Stewart, the president and CEO of the Rock Hall, and I just returned from New York City, where we attended a funeral service and memorial reception for the late, great Les Paul. The service, which was held at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel on Madison Avenue, was very moving. Various family members reminisced about Les, as did Lou Pallo, Les’ longtime guitar sidekick and friend; Ron Sturm, who runs the Iridium Jazz Club, where Les played two shows every Monday night; and Henry Juszkiewicz, the CEO of Gibson Guitar. There were several common themes: how sweet and loving  Les was and how quick-witted he was, always ready to take a jab at someone. Les’ trio – Pallo, bass player Nicki Parrott and piano player John Colianni – performed between the reminiscences, closing the funeral with the very apt “Vaya Con Dios (May God Be With You).” As Les’s son Russ told me, “Les had a very big plate and through his life he filled it with many great things. It’s our job to make sure we continue to share that plate with everyone.” Tony Bennett, Slash, Richie Sambora, Jose Feliciano, Neal Schon, Brad Whitford and Jeff “Skunk” Baxter ...


continue Categories: Other

Exclusive Bruce Springsteen Interview Clip (1 of 8)

Friday, August 21: 12 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke

Chief Curator Jim Henke talks to Bruce Springsteen
This is the first in a series of eight interview audio clips with Springsteen that we will post over the next several weeks.  Be sure to check back here weekly to listen to the newest clip.

In March, prior to the opening of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s new exhibit, From Asbury Park to the Promised Land: The Life and Music of Bruce Springsteen, I had the good fortune to go to New Jersey to interview Bruce. When I arrived at his house, Bruce was in a small studio room off the kitchen, wailing away on his guitar. His recording engineer, Toby Scott, was behind the board. Toby had played a major role in putting the exhibit together, serving as my main point person in the Springsteen camp to help me select the many artifacts for the exhibit. They finished laying down the track, and Bruce and I sat down in his living room to do the interview. He told me stories about several of the items in the exhibit. Everything went very smoothly, with one exception: Bruce’s rather large cat kept running into the room ...


continue Categories: Exclusive Interviews

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee, Les Paul, passes away

Thursday, August 13: 5:45 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke
Photo from the 2008 American Music Masters tribute concert, courtesy of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fa

It’s a very sad day for everyone who loves music. Les Paul passed away. He was truly one of the greats. He was a great guitar player. He was a great innovator, responsible for the solid-body electric guitar and for multi-track recording. He had an amazing life. He spent 94 years here on earth. And his mind stayed sharp the entire time, and he continued to perform, playing at a New York club every Monday night until recently. I had the privilege to know Les. When we were first working on the Museum, I called him and he told me he was giving all of his things to the Smithsonian. A few years later, he called me and said he was coming to Cleveland to see his doctor and he wanted to see the Hall of Fame. I gave him a tour, and at the end he said, “Jim, you are right. This is where my stuff belongs. If I gave everything to the Smithsonian, I would be lucky if they put one guitar on the wall. And it would probably be next to Judy Garland’s red slippers and no one would care about my guitar.” We then ...


continue Categories: Other, Inductee

Rock Hall’s Chief Curator Talks about the Anniversary of Woodstock

Thursday, August 13: 12 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke
Map of Woodstock Festival from the Rock Hall exhibit WOODSTOCK: The 40th Anniversary.

This month marks the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. Yes, the music festival that had such an impact on our culture took place 40 years ago! Those babies who were born at Woodstock are now 40 years old! And nowadays, it seems like everyone you ask claims they were at Woodstock. Well, I wasn’t there. I was still a teenager, too young to drive. And I’m sure my parents would not have let me go even if I could have driven. But, like so many others, I watched the coverage on the television and read the stories in the newspapers. Then, when the movie was finally released, I was able to experience the great music that was made at Woodstock. Yes, there were music festivals before Woodstock, but none of them had the cultural impact that Woodstock did. It was a cultural milestone, the coming of age of the peace and love generation. It was no longer our parents’ world. It was our world. We were against the war in Vietnam. We loved rock and roll and we proved that three days of peace, love and music among half a million dirty, hungry young people was possible. Yes, Woodstock ...


continue Categories: Other
previous Page 2 of 2.