Bruce Springsteen on his depression: ‘It still jumps up and bites me’

Springsteen opened up about the illness on BBC Radio 4

Bruce Springsteen has opened up about his struggle with depression during his appearance on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs.

The acclaimed programme, which sees host Kirsty Young joined each week by a guest who is asked to name eight recordings, a book and a luxury item that they would take with them on a desert island, aired today (December 18).

Speaking of his battle with depression, Springsteen said, “It is something that has been a part of my life. It is usually OK, but like Churchill’s ‘black dog’, it still jumps up and bites you in the arse sometimes.”

Bruce Springsteen depressionGetty

His wife, the singer Patti Scialfa, also helped him, Springsteen said, as did the right dose of medication. He says that Scialfa sometimes had to see a “freight train bearing down, loaded with nitroglycerin and running quickly out of track”.

Asked by Young how he comes back from moments that he previously described as being “close to the abyss”, Springsteen said: “Patti’s very helpful, and sometimes just time. Or sometimes the correct medication, you need the right drugs. That can really help also.”

“These are all things that can pull you back into your life and certainly in my case how blessed my life has been,” he continued. “I have developed some skills that help me deal with it but still, it is a powerful, powerful thing, it really comes up and there are things that still remain unexplainable to me,” he said.

Desert Island Discs, which was first broadcast in 1942, has this year welcomed the likes of Tom Hanks, Bill Gates and Michael Bublé onto the programme.

Read more: Eight Songs Noel Gallagher Would Take To A Desert Island And Why – Playlist

Speaking of his track choices, Springsteen said; “this is the music that electrified me – they galvanised me into changing my life in some way.”