Bruce Springsteen

Kevin Mazur/

The Boss is giving some big-ups to his battered home state.

In the catastrophic aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Bruce Springsteen paid tribute to New Jersey's ransacked coastal cities Thursday night, calling out its emergency workers' resilience amid daunting circumstances.

"We're here tonight with a little sadness in our hearts because, as a band, you cannot separate us from the Jersey shore," he reportedly told the crowd during a performance with his E Street Band at Penn State University.

The 63-year-old rocker thanked emergency first-responders, local law enforcement and Gov. Chris Christie—whom he said was "doing a fine job"—before launching into a poignant rendition of his song "My City in Ruins."

Springsteen is set to perform at a benefit concert for Sandy victims Friday night. The one-hour live telethon, Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together, will be hosted by Today coanchor Matt Lauer and will air at 8 p.m. ET on NBC, Bravo, CNBC, E!, G4, MSNBC, Style, Syfy and USA.

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Bruce Springsteen, Christina Aguilera, Jon Bon Jovi and more to perform at benefit concert for Sandy victims

Here's what else went down last night:

It's the CMAs, Y'all! Read the best and worst moments from the show, plus get the winners' list. And don't forget to see who was best dressed on the carpet!

Class Court Is Dismissed: A judge rejected Sam Lutfi's entire case against Britney Spears and her family. And just like that, it's over.

Porn Pals: Get to know Miley Cyrus' new friend (who is a porn star), Jessie Andrews.

Careful, Don't Touch: Robert Pattinson got all spiked up and coiffed for his photo spread in Italian Vogue.

Books and Billions: George Lucas announced that he will donate the $4 billion from his Lucasfilm sale to Disney to fund education. 

TV Land: Read the recaps for The X Factor and Jersey Shore!

(E! and NBC are part of the NBCUniversal family.)

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