Sam Fender cries after meeting his hero Bruce Springsteen: “Full circle moment complete”

Fender supported The Boss in Italy last night (May 18), and described the experience as "insane"

Sam Fender has shared his emotional reaction to meeting his musical hero Bruce Springsteen for the first time.

The North Shields singer-songwriter supported The Boss in Ferrara, Italy last night (May 18) and is scheduled to open for him again in Rome on Sunday (May 21).

Upon announcing the gigs last year, Fender – who has been called the ‘Geordie Springsteen’ – wrote: “I’m thinking about the moment [Springsteen’s] music first resonated with me when I was a teenager!


“Next year I’m opening up for him in Italy. What the fuck is going on?”

Fender performed ahead of Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band taking to the stage at Parco Urbano Bassani. Following the support slot, the musician shared a picture of himself with tears in his eyes. “FUCK,” he captioned it. “Just met the boss.”

A follow-up video showed Fender and his bandmates reflecting on the experience as they travelled back from the venue. “I’m gonna fucking whitey, me,” he said in disbelief. “It was the maddest thing ever.”

The artist wrote above the clip that he was still “spinning from meeting Bruce”, and described the show as “insane”. In another Instagram post, he used the caption: “Full circle moment complete.”

Sam Fender performs live onstage
Sam Fender performs live. CREDIT: Mark Horton

After opening for The Boss at the Circo Massimo in Rome this weekend, Fender will play a headline concert in Milan next Tuesday (May 23).


The ‘Seventeen Going Under’ artist has cited Springsteen as a major influence on his sound, and is often compared to the legendary singer-songwriter. Speaking to NME in 2021, Fender said: “I can’t exactly bat off those comparisons, can I?”

He continued: “At the same time, I don’t feel worthy of that [‘Geordie Springsteen’] tag. The first time I heard it, I was like, ‘That’s fucking sick’, but you don’t want to be riding off the coattails of The Boss for the rest of your life.

“I can write my own songs, they’re different and my voice doesn’t sound anything like Springsteen’s. I don’t have his growl; I’m a little fairy when I sing.”

Next month will see Fender play two headline shows at Newcastle United’s St. James’ Park, where Springsteen played a gig that was attended by Fender’s godfather in 1985. He’ll become the first Geordie band to top the bill at the stadium (find any remaining tickets here).

Bruce Springsteen performs live onstage
Bruce Springsteen performs a second concert at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys on April 30, 2023 in Barcelona, Spain. CREDIT: Xavi Torrent/Redferns

“I guess my biggest hero, Springsteen, he never ever stopped singing about his home,” Fender told NME upon announcing the first St. James’ Park date last September.

“He never stopped writing about people. I think that’s the reality – just because things are going good here [it] doesn’t mean that I have to completely lose connection with the human experience.”

Fender is also due to headline TRNSMT and Reading & Leeds this summer. Additionally, he’ll make appearances at various European festivals including Rock Werchter, Sziget and NorthSide.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, meanwhile, will play two headline gigs at BST Hyde Park in London this July as part of their 2023 UK tour. Find any remaining tickets here.

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