POLL RESULTS: Bruce Springsteen’s best music videos
Updated: Aug 31, 2019
As Springsteen fans flocked to cinemas in recent weeks to take in the Springsteen-themed movie “Blinded by the Light,” a fair number also weighed in for our poll on his best performances on the little screen -- these days, probably your phone. Yes, we’re talking about Bruce Springsteen’s official music videos, and we got 502 responses from folks looking to pick their favorites.
Let’s count down the top 10 (you can watch them all in this YouTube playlist):
10. “Atlantic City” (1982). Bruce’s first video, it’s gritty, moody, black-and-white, and he’s not in it. A fine visual introduction that matches the song, "Atlantic City" got 18 votes in our poll.
9. “Western Stars” (2019). A nice finish for the most recent Springsteen video, with its rustic western settings and Viagra references garnering 19 votes. Bonus: No footage of coyotes carrying chihuahuas.
8. “Dream Baby Dream” (2013). A properly atmospheric performance clip, this video for the Suicide cover Bruce first took to playing on the “Devils & Dust” tour got 23 votes.
7. “Born to Run” (1986). As much a celebration of the “Born in the USA” tour as it is of Bruce’s first standout single, this boisterous live clip compilation got 26 votes in our poll.
6. “Dancing in the Dark” (1984). The one that really started it all, with Bruce’s first on-screen appearance and the infamous Courtney Cox cameo that’s still inspiring cringes to this day. It got 27 votes to edge out “Born to Run” in our poll.
5. “Tougher than the Rest” (1988). Another great collection of live clips, I’m embarrassed to admit I forgot about this one ... But you didn’t, apparently: A great souvenir of the “Tunnel of Love” tour, this one got 29 votes in our poll.
4. “Brilliant Disguise” (1987). Holy Extreme Close-Up, Batman! This atmospheric black-and-white clip moves slowly in on Bruce’s face as he strums his guitar in a kitchen, capturing the claustrophobia inherent to some relationships that’s apparent in the song and the album as a whole. (How’s that for analysis?) This one got 31 votes to nab fourth place.
3. “I’m On Fire” (1985). Bruce acts! And he’s pretty good too. This one edged out “Brilliant Disguise” by one vote, getting 32 to take third place.
2. “Glory Days” (1985). Arguably the best of the many “Born in the USA” videos, this one’s got everything: Bruce driving a crane, playing baseball, being a dad, and leading the band. With extra points for Stevie’s mandolin, of course. “Glory Days” scored 35 votes to come in second.
1. “Streets of Philadelphia” (1994). “Philadelphia” director Jonathan Demme also directed this clip, so it’s probably not surprising that it echoes the film’s melancholy atmosphere so well. Who knows, maybe it even helped nudge Bruce towards his “Best Song” Oscar. It got a whopping 42 votes for a clear first place finish.
Here’s the full list of the top 30 finishers, with vote count:
Streets of Philadelphia, 42
Glory Days, 35
I’m on Fire, 32
Brilliant Disguise, 31
Tougher Than the Rest, 29
Dancing in the Dark, 27
Born to Run, 26
Dream Baby Dream, 23
Western Stars, 19
Atlantic City, 18
Tunnel of Love, 17
One Step Up, 16
If I Should Fall Behind, 16
A Night with the Jersey Devil, 15
Human Touch, 14
Born in the U.S.A., 11
Girls in Their Summer Clothes, 11
The Wrestler, 10
Spare Parts, 8
Murder Incorporated, 8
My Hometown, 7
American Skin, 7
Hunter of Invisible Game, 7
Better Days, 5
Lonesome Day, 5
Long Walk Home, 5
Ain’t Good Enough For You, 5
Secret Garden, 4
American Land (live), 4