Bill Clinton was a suprise show at the Stand Up for Heroes benefit Nov. 9 at the Beacon Theater. The former president mused about being “the opening act of a comedy show. Some people think that being a politician makes you a comedy show.”

The event, organized by the Bob Woodruff Foundation, supports veterans, and brought out Ricky Gervais, Jim Gaffigan and Jon Stewart, who was careful to hit both Dems and Republicans but scored his biggest laugh with a line on child-rearing: “I’m Jewish. My wife’s Catholic. We’re raising our kids to be sad.”

Bruce Springsteen performed a four-song set. Curiously, while the theater doors had to be closed earlier to prevent the national anthem from being drowned out by racket at the Beacon’s multiple bars, everyone was silent and respectful for the Boss, age 62.

For the live auction of Springsteen’s guitar, harmonica, harmonica rack and shirt, he was joined by Brian Williams and Seth Meyers, who joked that they were “also here to raise a couple of bucks for NBC.”

After surrendering his instruments and clothing, Springsteen closed things out with “Long Tall Sally” on a backup guitar, since “you don’t have to tune to play this one,” he said.

The auction of Springsteen stuff brought in more than $160,000.