As the Jersey Shore community mourns the loss of Clarence Clemons, a memorial has been placed at a very famous Belmar intersection.
At 10th Avenue and E Street, flowers, candles and photos have been placed in remembrance of the legendary saxophonist who rose to fame as a member of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band.
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While the band is known for cutting their teeth in the music scene of Asbury Park, fans and local residents most likely know that the E Street in the band's name was inspired by the street in Belmar.
Original band keyboardist David Sancious' mother lived on E Street and allowed the band to rehearse in her home during the early years. Sancious, played on Springsteen's debut, Greetings From Asbury Park and the follow-up, The Wild, The Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, before leaving to start his own group.
It's unclear whether or not the titular street in "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out," a popular track from Springsteen's landmark third album Born to Run, is the same 10th Avenue found in Belmar. Springsteen himself has admitted in interviews to not being able to explain exactly what a "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" is, but the song has special significance in the wake of Clemons' passing.
"Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" is a bit of Springsteen autobiography, telling the story of the E Street Band's formation. A Clemons saxophone flourish is heard immediately after the line: "When the change was made uptown and the big man joined the band."
to listen to Clemons' music and to share memories.
Springsteen released the following statement on his website shortly after Clemons' death:
Clarence lived a wonderful life. He carried within him a love of people that made them love him. He created a wondrous and extended family. He loved the saxophone, loved our fans and gave everything he had every night he stepped on stage. His loss is immeasurable and we are honored and thankful to have known him and had the opportunity to stand beside him for nearly forty years. He was my great friend, my partner, and with Clarence at my side, my band and I were able to tell a story far deeper than those simply contained in our music. His life, his memory, and his love will live on in that story and in our band.
In April, Patch.com was there when entitled Who Do I Think I Am? at the Garden State Film Festival in Asbury Park.