Springsteen’s ‘Madam Marie’ Dies — Asbury Park Paper (Natch) Got Last Interview

By: Joe Strupp

As the news spread around New Jersey, and Bruce Springsteen circles, of the death of “Madam” Marie Castello — the famed fortune teller from Springsteen’s 1973 favorite, “Fourth of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)” — one newspaper had the others beat.

And as seems fitting, it was The Asbury Park Press.

The Press, based in nearby Neptune, N.J., these days, got the last interview with the 94-year-old Castello — who got busted in the song by the cops for “tellin’ fortunes better than they do” — less than two months ago. So when she died Friday, and word broke today, the Gannett paper posted the lengthy May interview by staffer Bill Handleman online.

She retired in the mid-1990s but family members have kept the boardwalk booth open.

One excerpt from the Press:

“Some kid named Springsteen used to come around a lot in those days. He’d sit on the railing across the boardwalk and play his guitar. He was 17.?? One time he came over and said ‘All I’ve got is 50 cents,’ she remembers. ‘I told him, ‘You don’t have to give me your 50 cents.’? As the story goes, she told him he would be famous one day. She probably said that to all the boys, Springsteen once conceded. Still, he would immortalize her in song. He would make her the most famous fortuneteller ever to peer into a crystal ball. ‘He always comes by to say hello,’ she says now. ‘He knows where he came from.'”

Check out the Press’ interview here.

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