Bruce Springsteen auctioned off his guitar, one hour of free lessons, and a recording session last night for a whopping $250,000. The winning bidder was New Jersey realtor Jerry Raffa, who looked as stunned as Springsteen’s wife, Patti Scialfa, as he came backstage. “Two fifty!” Patti said to Bruce, who was shaking his head. But right before that she said, laughing, “Wait! What did he promise them?” There was mention of an elaborate recording session at Bruce’s studio.
Scialfa hersellf had just come off stage after singing a duet with Bruce in The Theater at Madison Garden. They were the final performers in all star parade for Bob and Lee Woodruff’s annual Stand Up for Heroes, one of the great events of the year. This year the event was so big the Woodruffs moved it from the Beacon Theater down to the 5600 seat MSG Theater and sold the place out. They made just under $5 million.
For the price of a ticket guests got to hear not only Bruce and Patti, but Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters leading his band and about 20 active and wounded soldiers in a mini concert that included John Lennon’s “Imagine,” Sam Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come.” Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” and Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb.” Waters has become devoted to the soldiers in the last couple of years, and has turned their music hobby into something grand and poignant. In addition to his own band, Waters had five guitarists from the Army and Marines, several singers, two lead singers (including a very talented guy named Tim and another one named J.W. Cortes).
The other performers included a comedy A list: Bill Cosby, Jon Stewart, Jerry Seinfeld, and Jim Gaffigan. In the audience the celebs including direct0r-comedian David Steinberg, plus John McEnroe and Patti Smythe.
Meanwhile, Springsteen’s three song set was unusual in that featured the Boss on pump organ playing a cover of Suicide’s “Dream Baby Dream,” accompanying himself on acoustic guitar to an unplugged “Dancing in the Dark,” and the poignant duet with Patti on “If I Should Fall Behind” which featured Scialfa’s beautifully bluesy vocals. Since it’s rare to see Bruce play a pump organ, I asked Scialfa about it. She told me, “We bought in a thrift shop in Asbury Park.” And there ya go.
The guitar auction matched the price paid last winter by Steve Jobs’s sister in law at a MusiCares event. http://www.showbiz411.com/2013/02/10/steve-jobss-sister-in-law-pays-250k-for-springsteen-guitar