The Late Movies: Happy Birthday, Clarence Clemons!

Erica Palan

If Bruce Springsteen is the face of the E Street Band, Clarence Clemons is its not-so-secret weapon. A hugely talented saxophonist, Clemons met Springsteen in 1971 and together they formed one of the greatest, most popular bands in the history of rock and roll. Additionally, Clemons is an actor and an author. Today, Clemons, known to E Street fans as The Big Man, turns 69 years old. We wish the happiest of birthdays, Big Man! (Now, seriously, when are you guys touring again?)

Meeting Bruce Springsteen

During an interview in 2009, Clemons discussed the first time he met Bruce Springsteen.

”Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out”

This song explains the creation of the E Street Band. Listen for Clemons’s sax after Bruce sings about The Big Man joining the band.

”You’re a Friend of Mine”

In 1985, Clemons paired up with Jackson Browne to make this song, which appeared on the Big Man's solo album Hero. Keep your eyes peeled for Browne’s famous girlfriend in the video!

The Late Show With David Letterman

This funny interview starts off with a long, upbeat sax performance and then a sit-down with Letterman where Clemons discussed everything from smuggling items from Cuba to John Phillip Sousa.

”Rock & Roll DJ”

In 1982, Clemons appeared on The Alan Thicke Show.

Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure

Clemons has dabbled in acting, appearing in roles on television and major motion pictures, including this one in 1989.

”Born to Run” solo

As the band’s most beloved hit becomes more dramatic, Clemons and his sax chime in with an upbeat solo.

”Jungleland” solo

There are lots and lots of E Street songs featuring Clemons and his saxophone, but one of the most intense solos comes during “Jungleland.”

Twilight of the Big Man

In this interview, Clemons talks about what happens when the band plays live together and how being in the E Street Band is more passionate than being married.

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