Remember When Bruce Springsteen Was Inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame by U2’s Bono?

Bruce Springsteen was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame at a ceremony held at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York 25 years ago, on March 15, 1999. The Boss was welcomed into the hallowed institution by U2 frontman Bono.

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Among the other artists who were inducted into the Rock Hall in 1999 were Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, Curtis Mayfield, Del Shannon, Dusty Springfield, and The Staple Singers. McCartney had previously been inducted as a member of The Beatles in 1988.

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In saluting Springsteen, Bono read a nine-minute speech in which he celebrated Bruce’s writing, his image, his integrity, and his camaraderie with the E Street Band.

“Here was a dude who carried himself like Brando, Dylan, and Elvis, if John Steinbeck could sing, if Van Morrison could ride a Harley-Davidson,” the Irish rocker said. “[B]ut he was something new too. He was the first whiff of Scorsese, the first hint of Patti Smith, Elvis Costello, and The Clash. He was the end of long hair, brown rice, and bell bottoms. He was the end of the 20-minute drum solo. It was, ‘Good night, Haight Ashbury. Hello, Asbury Park.”

[RELATED: Watch Bruce Springsteen Recall First Hearing of Jon Bon Jovi in Trailer for Upcoming Docuseries]

Springsteen’s Acceptance Speech

Springsteen’s acceptance speech ran more than 15 minutes, during which he expressed his deep appreciation for the family members, friends, music-industry associates, and, of course, band members who helped and played with him along the way.

The Boss thanked his mom for buying him his first electric guitar one Christmas, and for supporting and encouraging him in his pursuit of a music career. He thanked his recently deceased dad for the conflicts they had that gave him material for his songs.

Springsteen thanked each and every member of the E Street Band, saving special comments for guitarist Steven Van Zandt, wife Patti Scialfa, and sax player Clarence Clemons.

About Van Zandt, Springsteen said, “He’s a lifetime of rock ‘n’ roll friendship. We did it all. [He’s a] great songwriter, producer, [and a] great guitarist.”

Springsteen said that his relationship with Scialfa had been “the 10 best years of my life” (they’ve now been together well over 30 years), while noting that their three children were “genealogically linked to the E Street Band.”

He added, “Everybody wants to know how I feel about the band. Hell, I married one of them.”

About Clemons, he shared a fond recollection of playing with him for the first time, and discussed his close bond with “The Big Man.”

“He always lifted me up, way, way, way up,” Bruce said. “Together we told a story of the possibilities of friendship, a story older than the ones that I was writing, and a story that I could never have told without him at my side.”

Springsteen’s Performances at the Ceremony

After his speech, Springsteen took the stage with the E Street Band and played his classic songs—“The Promised Land,” “Badlands,” and “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out.” Soul legend Wilson Pickett then joined Springsteen and the band for a rendition of Pickett’s enduring hit “In the Midnight Hour,” with Joel sitting in on keyboards.

Springsteen also took part in a star-studded jams that featured McCartney, Joel, Bono, Eric Clapton, The Band’s Robbie Robertson, and others onstage together for performances of The Beatles’ “Let It Be” and Mayfield’s “People Get Ready.”

About The E Street Band’s and U2’s Rock Hall Induction

For many years, Springsteen expressed regret that he didn’t insist the E Street Band be inducted alongside him in 1999. At the time, he had just reunited with the group, with whom he was preparing to tour for the first time in 11 years.

The E Street Band finally was welcomed into the Rock Hall in 2014, with Springsteen inducting his longtime backing group and performing with them at the ceremony.

Six years after Bono inducted Springsteen into the Rock Hall, Bruce returned the favor, welcoming U2 into the Hall of Fame in 2005.

Springsteen’s 2024 Tour Plans

As previously reported, Springsteen and the E Street Band will launch a 2024 tour with a U.S. leg that kicks off March 19 in Phoenix. The spring stateside outing runs through an April 21 concert in Columbus, Ohio. The tour then will visit Europe in May, June, and July, before mounting a second U.S. leg in August and September.

The Boss and company also have a fall tour of Canada lined up. Visit to check out his full itinerary.

Tickets for the concerts are available via a variety of outlets, including StubHub.

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