By Roman Salomone, Contributor
[Photo courtesy of CNN]
The tracklist shows that Springsteen is performing tracks written by the likes of the Commodores, Jimmy Ruffin, and the Four Tops, among many others. This will follow 2020’s Letter to You and will be Bruce’s second album of covers, after 2006’s We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions.
Only The Strong Survive is produced by Ron Aniello who has worked with Springsteen since 2012’s Wrecking Ball. Writing credits show that the album also features contributions by the E Street Horns and backing vocalists Soozie Tyrell, Michelle Moore, Lisa Lowell, Curtis King Jr., Dennis Collins, and Fonzi Thornton. It also features two guest appearances from singer Sam Moore, known for his work in the legendary soul duo Sam & Dave.
Alongside the album announcement comes the release of the single “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)”, originally written by Frank Wilson. Additionally, Bruce posted a video on his YouTube channel explaining some of the context and background to Only The Strong Survive. In a statement featured in Rolling Stone about this forthcoming release, Bruce said:
“I wanted to make an album where I just sang. And what better music to work with than the great American songbook of the ’60s and ’70s? I’ve taken my inspiration from Levi Stubbs, David Ruffin, Jimmy Ruffin, the Iceman Jerry Butler, Diana Ross, Dobie Gray, and Scott Walker, among many others. I’ve tried to do justice to them all—and to the fabulous writers of this glorious music. My goal is for the modern audience to experience its beauty and joy, just as I have since I first heard it. I hope you love listening to it as much as I loved making it.”
Springsteen has kept busy over the past several years. He released Western Stars and Letter to You in 2019 and 2020 respectively. He and former President Barack Obama started the Renegades: Born in the USA podcast in early 2021. Last November saw the release of The Legendary 1979 No Nukes Concert live album and concert film. The E Street Band celebrated their 50th year of signing to Columbia Records last June. Most recently, Vinyl Me Please announced a reissue of one of Bruce’s seminal albums, Nebraska, in honor of its 40th anniversary this September.
Listen to “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” below.