Loyal to their Boss

Cover design by Joyce Bassett / Times Union
Cover design by Joyce Bassett / Times Union


Amy Biancolli wrote a terrific Springsteen fan story for the Times Union’s Preview section today.

It features superfan Bill Butler, a native of Red Bank, N.J. He goes to my church and we never miss a chance to chat about Bruce, while my husband and his wife roll their eyes and laugh.

Here’s an excerpt from Amy’s piece:

But as first times go, Bill Butler‘s beats all.

It was 1970. The Clifton Park resident was then a kid in Jersey. A friend invited him to his father’s movie theater, where they watched some flick or other — it may have been “Rosemary’s Baby” — and then sat around afterward as the crowd filed out.

“And the curtain goes up. And the band comes out, and they were practicing.”

It was Springsteen. Butler had never heard him before; his ears were accustomed to Black Sabbath. “And you know, I thought, ‘Here was a different sound.'” Butler’s second Springsteen sighting was an actual concert — a little while later, at the Clearwater Swim Club — and he’s been following the kid from Freehold ever since.

… Butler’s one of those guys: He grew up on the Jersey Shore right when Springsteen was starting out, and he isn’t sure how many shows he’s attended. “You know, I’ve counted ’em up, and I’m somewhere between the upper 120s and the mid-130s.” That said, “I don’t know if I’d call myself a fanatic.”

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