The Ties That Bind: Bruce Springsteen's 25 Biggest Heroes

The artists, activists and friends that have shaped Springsteen's world

Robert Mitchum

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Mitchum starred in two films that provided Springsteen with some essential lyrical content: 1958's The Ballad of Thunder Road (See, obviously, "Thunder Road") and 1955's The Night of the Hunter, in which he starred as sinister preacher with love and hate tattooed across the knuckle of his hands. Springsteen lifted that exact imagery for "Cautious Man," from 1987's Tunnel of Love. It's also easy to see Mitchum's famously laconic, fatalistic presence in the Springsteen's early-career street scamp phase. 

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