September 29: Bruce Springsteen’s gift
On September 29th, 1989 Bruce Springsteen gave an impromptu performance at Matt’s Saloon in Prescott, Arizona.
The Boss was passing through the sleepy town, which is about 100 miles north of Phoenix, with a few friends on their motorcycles en route to the Grand Canyon. He arrived at Matt’s, ordered a beer and then turned to the musicians, a local country-and-western group, and asked them to play with him.
When word spread that a major rock star was in town, the tiny bar became full of people.
While he was there, he had overheard the barmaid’s sad story. Brenda “Bubbles” Pechanec was facing a lot of bills for cancer treatment.
Even after leaving the bar that night, on his silver-and-blue Harley, that story must have made quite an impression on him. About a week later, a letter was delivered to the saloon, addressed to “Bubbles.” In the envelope there was the biggest tip ever given to a barmaid: Bruce had sent her a check for $100,000 to cover of her medical expenses.
The Boss had blown into town, rocked the house and left behind a legendary story.