Yeah, Bruce was ticked. The Hall of Fame rocker even posted an open letter to his fans, not only decrying Ticketmaster practices but also expressing displeasure of the pending Live Nation / Ticketmaster merger.

Now there’s a new deal for those N.J. Boss fans. A settlement was announced today calling for a drawing to be held for more than 1,800 people on March 31. Those people may buy tickets for one of two Springsteen shows at the Izod Center in E. Rutherford, N.J., May 21 and 23. State officials say 1,000 tickets will be available for the drawing for each show.

According to the Star-Ledger, the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority’s drawing is part of the settlement between N.J. Attorney General Anne Milgram and Ticketmaster, and it resolves more than 2,000 complaints from fans who tried to buy tickets during the initial onsale. The state’s Division of Consumer Affairs sifted through those complaints and came up with a list of 1,861 people the department felt should get a second chance, after eliminating some fans who already had tickets.

Each of the drawing’s 1,000 winners will be notified by mail that they can purchase two tickets, while the remaining 861 fans will receive $100 Ticketmaster gift certificates. The 1,000 tickets to each of the two shows come from the Sports Authority’s reserve of seats and were not included in the original onsale. Usually, these seats are held for a variety of groups, including the promoter, the band, sponsors and the N.J. Sports Authority itself.

Tickets for the two shows went on sale on the first Monday in February. Responding to fans’ complaints about being redirected to TicketsNow, Springsteen posted an open letter on his official Web site, saying:

We perceive this as a pure conflict of interest. Ticketmaster is there to ensure that we have a good, fair sale of our tickets at their face value plus normal ticketing charges. TicketsNow is supposed to be a secondary site where people who already have tickets may exchange, trade, and, unfortunately, speculate with them. We have asked this redirection from Ticketmaster to TicketsNow cease and desist immediately and Ticketmaster has agreed to do so in the future and has removed its unwanted material from their and our site.

On the same day Springsteen’s message was posted on, Ticketmaster CEO Irving Azoff responded, saying:

While we were genuinely trying to do the right thing for fans in providing more choices when the tickets they requested from the primary on-sale were not available, we clearly missed the mark. Fans are confused and angry, which is the opposite of what we hoped to accomplish. We sincerely apologize to Bruce, his organization and, above all, his fans.

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band’s “Working On A Dream” tour begins April 1 in San Jose at the HP Pavilion.

To read the Star-Ledger’s account, click here.

To read Bruce Springsteen’s open letter, click here.

To read Ticketmaster CEO Irving Azoff’s response, click here.