Bruce Springsteen mentions Sunderland weather and pays tribute to fans in award speech

Bruce Springsteen has admitted he was slightly daunted when he stepped out on stage in Sunderland on Wednesday night to absolutely horrendous weather conditions. And he's also paid tribute to all the fans who flocked to see him in the pouring rain, calling them 'his people.'

In a drastic and very unwanted contrast to The Boss' gig in Dublin just a few days earlier, which was bathed in warm sunshine, it felt more like winter than summer at the Stadium of Light earlier this week, when Met Office predictions for downpours sadly proved to be spot on, as an estimated crowd of 41,000 braved the deluge to go to his gig with The E Street Band.

Heavy showers didn't let up all day, leading to added travel chaos for those trying to get to the stadium in time for the scheduled 7pm, as the gig was then delayed by more than half an hour, with Bruce eventually arriving on a spanking wet stage around 7.40pm. While the rain did its best to dampen spirits, it failed as the drenched crowd were still in fine voice to welcome the man himself as Bruce, rather aptly kicked off his setlist with Waitin' On A Sunny Day.

READ MORE: Bruce Springsteen in Sunderland: 25 photos of The Boss' rain soaked Stadium of Light gig

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And their dedication to the cause has been recognised by Bruce, as he picked up a top accolade at Thursday's Ivor Novello Awards. Being presented with the Academy fellowship by Paul McCartney, Bruce was quick to talk about his Sunderland gig, saying "We came out last night, and I was like: what is this weather? Driving rain, wind roaring. But standing in front of me, in the rain, I realised: these are my people.”

Bruce's near three hour musical masterclass on Wearside, his first visit in 12 years, also included great covers of The Commodores' Nightshift and Patti Smith's Because The Night, as well as classic Springsteen cuts like Thunder Road, Hungry Heart and Born To Run; meaning that, while they were wet through, Bruce's legions of fans went home happy.