Bruce, Bourbon, and Books: Bulleit Brings the Devil Out

Official video of Bruce, Bourbon, and Books

 By Daniel Ford and Dave Pezza

This semi-regular series will expertly pair a Springsteen song, a good bourbon, and a quality book for your listening, drinking, and reading pleasure. You can make your own suggestions and recommendations in the comments section or by tweeting @WritersBone.


Daniel: Dark. Moody. Apocalyptical. Hypnotic harmonica. In short, the perfect song to pair with a glass of bourbon. This tune had a prominent spot on the playlist I listened to while writing my first novel. I have a feeling it will make an appearance on the one I’ll use for my next one.


Bulleit Bourbon Frontier Whiskey

Bulleit Bourbon Frontier Whiskey

Dave: A 90 proof bourbon, Bulleit Frontier Whiskey is smoother than Jim Beam’s White Label or Wild Turkey’s 81 proof, but a little more expensive. As a result, it is a dangerous night cap well worth the price. You’re a few glasses into the bottle before you know what hit you. It lacks a bit of flavor right out of the bottle, replacing flavored accents with a bite that feels right for a dark mood. Add a cube of ice or a dash of water, and this bourbon opens up a little, sweetening up as the night goes on.


Dave: Quite a good pick to accompany bourbon and Bruce. The Hot Kid is one of Leonard’s last handful of novels before his death in 2013. The novel follows, surprise surprise, a U.S. Marshal by the name of Carlos Webster and his exploits against the bank robbers and gangsters of 1920s. Carl is Leonard’s quintessential hero: straight forward, possess well-developed comedic sense, is a hit with the ladies, and is as honest as possible while trying to do his Spanish American War-decorated father right. Carl takes down and teams up with gangsters and outlaws, in stand offs and badass lines what would later come out in the Leonard-inspired “Justified” television series. Just like this week’s other picks, Leonard writes Carl and the story’s whores, gangsters, reporters, and U.S. Marshals smoother than they look, with a rough edge to remind you of the true way of the world. It’ll get you to where you need to be by the night’s end. Devour this thriller with large doses of whiskey, like you’re hiding out in one of Leonard’s speakeasies for the evening.

For more Bruce/Bob, Bourbon, and Books, check out our full archive.