DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Hours before the start of his show Friday, Nils Lofgren tinkered with a borrowed instrument.

A member of Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band, Lofgren has played guitar alongside rock n’ roll royalty. On this particular evening, though, his fingers were missing the feel of one his well-worn Takamine guitars.

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“I played it for so many years and it’s travelled the world, so I’m wearing a hole in it. I don’t have quite the hole through it, but it’s about to break. So that was a dear guitar for me,” he said.

Lofgren says a thief was caught on surveillance cameras breaking into his van overnight, as it sat parked across from the lobby of a Holiday Inn Express on 4300 block of Communications Drive in Dallas.

Four guitars, a harp, and other equipment were stolen.

“My whole life I’ve been a fairly gullible, positive person,” said Lofgren. “It gets a little impractical when you’re doing one-nighters at the end of a long night to drag in half a ton of gear.”

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Devastated, Lofgren called on a local friend, Dr. Howard Kweller, who happened to be the drummer he played with in middle school.
Kweller came running to the rescue with the guitar Lofgren picked out two decades ago for his son’s bar mitzvah.

“Nils knows that guitar and he’s played it before,” said Kweller. “He’s the ultimate performer. I have no doubt he’ll have an amazing show.”

With hundreds of fans tweeting their condolences online, Lofgren hopes the thief will have a change of heart.

“Man, why’d you steal my equipment? I came here to sing for Dallas. What’s wrong with you? Give it back, would you?” he said in a message to the thief.

The loss, though, won’t stop him from pouring his heart out on stage.

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“I am a little fired up, angry. And I think that fury will continue into the show,” said Lofgren.