Bruce Springsteen read out a touching tribute to his friend and longtime musical collaborator Clarence Clemons at the E Street Band saxophonist’s funeral on June 21.
A private service for Clemons — known as “The Big Man” due to his great height — was held in Palm Beach, Florida, attended by other band members and three of his four ex-wives.
The ceremony included performances by Springsteen, the E Street Band, singer Jackson Browne and a sax solo of ‘Amazing Grace’ by Clemons’ nephew.
“Clarence was a man of unconditional love, but his love came with a lot of conditions,” the Palm Beach Daily News reports Springsteen as saying. “He was a complex guy … an ongoing project. But when you were in his presence, it was like being in a sovereign nation.”
Springsteen also played a solo version of ‘Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out,’ the song about how Clemens joined his band in the early 1970s, while Browne returned to his ’70s collaboration with the sax player, ‘You’re a Friend of Mine’.
Clemons died on Saturday due to complications following a stroke he suffered a week earlier.