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Bruce Springsteen Makes a Surprise Appearance at New Jersey Fundraiser

Plays set with Boccigalupe and the Bad Boys at benefit for trainer's family

Bruce Springsteen with Tony Amato from Boccigalupe and The Bad Boys in Asbury Park.
Conni Freestone
February 26, 2012 8:49 AM ET

Bruce Springsteen took the stage at a small club in Asbury Park for a surprise appearance on Saturday night.

The Press Room was holding a fundraiser for the family of Springsteen's longtime personal trainer, Tony Strollo, who died earlier this month at the age of 40. When Strollo's brother, singer-songwriter Michael Strollo performed at the event, Springsteen played backup acoustic guitar behind him for several songs.

Springsteen then played a six-song set, including "Rosalita," "Soul Man," "634-5789," "Detroit Medley," "Hold On, I'm Coming" and "10th Avenue Freezeout." He was backed by event headliners Boccigalupe and the Bad Boys, a Jersey-based band that Springsteen has often played with. 

Reporting by Griffin Lotz

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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