Bruce Springsteen thrilled the 30,000-strong crowd when he was presented with a giant Irish passport and spoke to the Limerick crowd about his Irish ancestors, at the rugby stadium Thomond Park.
“The Born in the USA” star has been delighting crowds around Ireland with gigs in Limerick, Cork and Belfast this week. At his Limerick gig on Tuesday evening he was presented with a giant passport made by James Coughlan, who Springsteen invited to an after show party to say thank you.
Shortly after the hugely energetic star spotted a sign in the crowds that read “Bruce O’Hagan”, made by Caroline Murphy (who provided the video below). He responded by saying “O’Hagan’s that’s right. I come from the O’Hagans, you are correct. Are there any O’Hagans out there? We’re related somehow. I’m not sure what....We are McNicholas and O’Hagans I guess.”
“The Boss’s” Irish family tree is linked to several names including including Farrell, Sullivan, O'Hagan, McCann and Garrity. In fact, the Springsteen surname comes from Bruce’s grandfather Anthony who married a woman called Martha O' Hagan.
Coughlan, who made Springsteen the oversized Irish passport, is a big fan and has tickets to the upcoming concert in Kilkenny. That will be the 51st Springsteen concert he has attended.
The fan told the Herald newspaper that he may be “Born in the USA”, but Bruce should have an Irish passport due to his heritage.
After the gig Coughlan was in Adare, where he was staying, when he got call on his cellphone. A voice at the other end asked, “"Where you at?"
Coughlan responded, "Who is this?" and “The Boss” said, "This is the guy you gave the passport to. You wanna meet up?"
Coughlan met Springsteen in the Basement Bar in the Adare Manor Hotel for a drink. He told the Herald, "My heart was beating at about 1,000 miles per hour, but I tried to stay cool."
"I've met some famous people before, but never got so excited.
"Bruce did most of the talking. He said he was taken aback and he was really proud. He was delighted with the originality.
"He seemed more gobsmacked by the passport than I was by meeting him."
The legendary rocker stayed for 15 minutes but Coughlan stayed on. He said, “I stayed drinking with members of the E Street Band and some of the back-up singers until 3am.
"It was absolutely brilliant."
A proud Irish American, Springsteen will play Belfast this Saturday and will return to play in Kilkenny at the end of July.