“Over here on E Street, we are crushed by the loss of John Prine,” Springsteen wrote on Twitter. “John and I were ‘New Dylans’ together in the early 70s and he was never anything but the loveliest guy in the world. A true national treasure and a songwriter for the ages. We send love and prayers to his family.”
Both Prine and Springsteen had been hailed as the “New Dylans” as they were coming up and making their indelible marks in the music world. The pair met backstage at a Bob Dylan show in the 1970s.
“Prine’s stuff is pure Proustian existentialism. Midwestern mindtrips to the nth degree. And he writes beautiful songs,” Dylan had said of Prine, via John Prine’s official Facebook page. “I remember when Kris Kristofferson first brought him on the scene. All that stuff about Sam Stone the soldier junky daddy and Donald and Lydia, where people make love from ten miles away. Nobody but Prine could write like that.”
In 1988, Prine and Springsteen shared the stage to perform Prine’s “Paradise” as Asbury Park Press noted. Springsteen later contributed backing vocals on “Take a Look at My Heart” from Prine’s 1991 album, The Missing Years.
Over here on E Street, we are crushed by the loss of John Prine. John and I were “New Dylans” together in the early 70s and he was never anything but the lovliest guy in the world. A true national treasure and a songwriter for the ages. We send our love and prayers to his family.
— Bruce Springsteen (@springsteen) April 8, 2020