The iconic cover, the outdoor summer party vibes — Born in the U.S.A. is still, after all these years, a quintessential record to break out Fourth of July weekend. But here’s your annual reminder that yes, it was actually meant as a scathing takedown of American imperialism — Bruce Springsteen has written a new foreword to the anti-war classic Born on the Fourth of July.
A new audiobook edition of Ron Kovic’s 1978 memoir is coming out July 4 and it features the boss’ voice at the start. Springsteen actually befriended the author/veteran long before his book was made into a Tom Cruise film in 1989. Below, listen to the Boss read his intro, recounting a chance encounter with Kovic in 1978 just after he’d read the memoir.
Born on the Fourth of July tells the story of its author’s transition from war hawk to protestor after being paralyzed in Vietnam, and coming home to a lukewarm reception. It’s no coincidence that “Born in The U.S.A.” tells very much the same tale.
And don’t forget — Bruce Springsteen’s own autobiography drops Sept. 27.