Bruce Springsteen has announced the passing of his mother, Adele Springsteen. She was 98 years old.
Springsteen shared the news of his mother’s death in an Instagram post on Thursday, February 1st. Alongside a video of the two dancing together, Bruce recited the lyrics from his 1987 song, “The Wish.”
“I remember in the morning mom hearing your alarm clock ring. I’d lie in bed and listen to you getting ready for work, the sound of your makeup case on the sink. And the ladies at the office all lipstick, perfume and rustling skirts, how proud and happy you always looked walking home from work.
It ain’t no phone call on Sunday, flowers or a Mother’s Day card. It ain’t no house on the hill with a garden and a nice little yard. I’ve got my hot rod down on Bond Street I’m older but you’ll know me in a glance. We’ll find us a Little rock ‘n roll bar and we’ll go out and dance.”
Springsteen previously credited his mother for inspiring him to take up music and renting him his first guitar at the age of seven. “There ain’t a note that I play on stage that can’t be traced back to my mother,” he once said of her.
Adele was born in Brooklyn, New York and worked for 47 years as a legal secretary. She married Douglas Frederick “Dutch” Springsteen in 1948 and relocated to Freehold, New Jersey, where they raised their three children, Bruce, Virginia, and Pamela. As Douglas suffered from severe mental health issues, Adele was often forced to shoulder the family’s financial burden while also serving as a caregiver for both her husband and children.
“She held our family together under great, great, great difficulty,” Springsteen said of his mother in 2010. “She did an unusual thing — her parents were relatively well-off and she married into poverty and served there for a good part of her life and really held us all together.”
During his Broadway residency, Springsteen shared an anecdote about how his mother loved to dance. “She grew up in the 1940s … (with) the big bands and the swing bands, and that was a time when dancing was an existential act,” he said. She continued to dance even after she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the age of 95. “[It]’s taken a lot away from us,” Springsteen said. “But the need to dance hasn’t left her.” The mother and son memorably danced together on stage during a performance of “Dancing in the Dark” at London’s Hyde Park in 2013.