100 Greatest Bruce Springsteen Songs of All Time

An expert panel of writers and artists pick Springsteen's best songs, from "Rosalita" to "Wrecking Ball"

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"Fade Away"

Richard McCaffrey/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

The River, 1980

Springsteen described the mood of this hushed, agonized ballad as follows: "Have you ever felt a love that you've had slipping away? That is an ugly feeling. You don't know what you can do to fix it, probably nothing." The song also suggests heartbroken girl-group pop, and the choked, almost adenoidal vocals borrow from Elvis Costello circa "Alison." It's one of Van Zandt's favorite Springsteen songs.

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