Real Life and Tall Tales from Clarence Clemons

October 21, 2009
Photo: The Howard Stern Show

Clarence Clemons stopped by to promote his new book, “Big Man: Real Life & Tall Tales,” and explained the subtitle: “Some of it was made up, most of it is just bullshit.” Howard noted that Clarence met Bruce Springsteen in 1974, and Clarence nodded, explaining he felt an instant connection with his future E Street Band companion: “When I first saw him, I knew it. I knew this was it.”

The E Street Band Years

Howard asked about the years in which Bruce wasn’t working with the E Street Band, and Clarence acknowledged that the (temporary) split upset him: “I was pissed.” Howard read a quote from Clarence’s book in which Redd Foxx told him to “Watch Bruce Springsteen…just remember that he’s white. I don’t mean anything bad by that, but when he looks at the world, it’s different.” Clarence laughed that he had paid the advice no mind: “I was never shocked by anything Redd Foxx said. He was kinda pissed off at the world.”

Clarence also credited the E Street Band’s longevity to their largely-separate lives: “We don’t hang out with each other and get in each other’s lives.” Clarence also told a story about an “I go or Clarence goes” ultimatum that Vini ‘Mad Dog’ Lopez reportedly gave to the Boss, leading Howard to commend Bruce’s loyalty: “Sometimes you can trust white people! He made the right decision.” Clarence said he had no hard feelings toward Vini: “I have no malice – no hatred for him. I can’t say sympathy, but…we miss each other.”

Weed, Women, and Broken Condoms

Clarence told the crew he no longer smoked weed: “I decided it was time to look at the world a different way. I’m a more mature person now…no more weed, man. No more nothing. I stopped drinking alcohol.” He also revealed that he once had an orgy with 6 women (“I watched a lot.”) and was happy to have knocked up a groupie along the way: “He’s a great kid and I’m glad the condom broke.”