“It’s not at all surreal,” Stewart says with heavy sarcasm, referring to his friendship with the legendary rocker. “It’s very hard to reconcile sitting and fishing in a little pond in New Jersey with a guy that you spent many years hitchhiking the New Jersey I-95 corridor to see in Philadelphia back in the day. The only band I think I’ve seen more than Bruce Springsteen is the Springsteen tribute band Backstreets. I try not to let him know how pathetic I truly am.”
As host of The Daily Show, Stewart has talked to Springsteen publicly, but within the tight confines of brief segments. In this interview, the men get the space to speak at length about Springsteen’s new album, Wrecking Ball, as well as their common ground as popular entertainers with a serious interest in politics.
Over the course of the conversation, Springsteen offers his take on Occupy Wall Street and the negative influence of what he calls the “big-money Wall Street hustle,” explains why his new single “We Take Care of Our Own” is not “jingoistic” and opens up about how he’s coping with the death of E Street Band saxophonist Clarence Clemons. “Losing Clarence was like losing the rain,” Springsteen says. “You’re losing something that has been so elemental in your life for such a long time.”
Jon Stewart’s interview with Bruce Springsteen will be available on newsstands and through Rolling Stone All Access on March 16th, 2012.