Bruce's success is based on music which has an unusual combination of macho male power, intelligence, and intimacy, with something to say to the blue collar heart of America, the lonely guy in the street and the marginalised back-street kid.
Many of his songs, although lyrically very agile and expressive, hit you with the force of a passing whirlwind and leave you feeling slightly dazed. At his worst he sounds like Meatloaf on a good day. At his best he is inspirational.
I hesitate to call Bruce an "All-American Hero" for fear of invoking images of an earlier horseback version, but his tribute song for the heroes and fallen of September 11th 2001 My City Of Ruins, puts him right at America's heart.