From 1974 to 1975, Bruce Springsteen wrote the tracks on his album Born to Run in a little house a block-and-a-half from the beach.
A few years ago, three hardcore Springsteen fans bought the cottage with grand dreams of turning it into a museum or visitor attraction, but life got in the way and shattered those plans. Now, the two-bedroom cottage is for sale for a whopping $299,000, the Associated Press reported.
That means the Born to Run house could belong to anyone with an extra three-hundred grand lying around, but one of its owners, Kim McDermott, told NJ Advance Media where she’d like it to end up.
“In a dream world, Bruce would show up and say ‘I think I should own this still. But I don’t think that’s going to happen.”
— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) October 19, 2015
McDermott, her brother Jerry Ferrara, and his friend Ryan DeCarolis bought the bungalow in 2009 at the urging of Ferrera’s father. The three are huge Springsteen fans, having attended 100 of his concerts and dropping some serious dough for memorabilia connected to the rocker over the years.
But owning his former crib — and the place he wrote Born to Run, no less — was an opportunity they realized they couldn’t pass up, Ferrara, 58, said.
“We’d been to a couple of auctions where people paid a ridiculous amount of money for a (Springsteen) signed guitar. To me, the house is better than that stuff. It’s the place where he wrote ‘Born to Run.'”
Springsteen has said before that he wrote every single song on Born to Run there, including the title track and songs “Thunder Road,” “Tenth Avenue Freeze-out,” “Jungleland,” and “Backstreets.” A few years ago at Cleveland’s Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, McDermott saw the small wooden table that sat in the kitchen; Bruce’s bills still sat atop it.
Ferrara had a chat with Kim and Ryan, and they decided to buy the cottage together to save it from demolition, spending $280,000 on the 828-square-foot house. The plan was for Ryan to live in it while the trio worked together to renovate it.
Unfortunately, once they bought it, life got in the way and derailed their dreams. They wanted to turn the cottage into an attraction for Bruce’s legion of fans, and over the years, many of them had arrived at the place he penned Born to Run. They’ve accommodated each fan, but as life got in the way, they started talking to various groups to help bring their plans to fruition.
DeCarolis couldn’t live in it because he ended up getting married and needed a bigger house. Kim got divorced. Jerry was busy with his job. In the end, they had to admit none of them had time to tend to their dream.
The house was built in 1920, has two bedrooms and one bathroom, a new roof, new wood floors, and vinyl siding. All Jerry, Kim, and Ryan can hope for now is that whoever buys the Born to Run house will recognize its importance in rock and roll history and Springsteen’s role there.
Meanwhile, NME reported that Bruce is re-releasing his 1980 album, The River, in a new box set, called The River: The Ties That Bind, on December 5 — just in time for Christmas. The box set will have 52 tracks, including songs that haven’t been released before, and four hours of never-before-seen video footage on three DVDs.
The unreleased songs included on the box set include 10 tracks he recorded in 1979, which were a follow-up to 1978’s Darkness on the Edge of Town The box set also includes outtakes and demos from the recording sessions of The River in 1979 and 1980.
[Photo Courtesy Brad Barket / Getty Images]