On November 11, Columbia Records will release Bruce Springsteen’s upcoming studio album, Only The Strong Survive, a compilation of fifteen legendary soul musicians.Only The Strong Survive honors soul music gems from the legendary catalogs of Motown, Gamble and Huff, Stax, and many other labels, with lead vocals by Bruce Springsteen. Sam Moore will also contribute vocals as a guest on Bruce Springsteen’s 21st studio album, which will also include work from The E Street Horns, Rob Mathes’ full string arrangements, and backing vocals from Soozie Tyrell, Lisa Lowell, Michelle Moore, Curtis King Jr., Dennis Collins, and Fonzi Thornton.
Ron Aniello, Rob Lebret, and Jon Landau worked together to produce, engineer, and executive produce Only The Strong Survive, which was tracked at Thrill Hill Recording in New Jersey. The release will represent Bruce Springsteen’s first new album since 2020’s Letter To You, which debuted at #1 in eleven countries.
The 73-year-old rock legend made the decision to make music that is fully focused on vocals, something he had never done before. He noted that in his 2016 autobiography, Born to Run, he gave his voice “short shrift” by claiming he didn’t think he had much of it. He added, “Around testing my voice.” But after beginning this production, Springsteen said in his distinctive rasp, “I realized “my voice is badass! I’m 73-year-old, I’m kickin’ ass! I’m a good ole man!”
“I wanted to do an album where I just sang,” The Boss said. And what better musical repertoire to use than the legendary American songbook from the 1960s and 1970s? Among many others, Levi Stubbs, David Ruffin, Jimmy Ruffin, the Iceman Jerry Butler, Diana Ross, Dobie Gray, and Scott Walker have all served as sources of inspiration for me. I’ve made an effort to do them all, as well as the amazing composers of this wonderful music, justice. I want the audience of today to feel its beauty and excitement as I have ever since I first heard it. As much as I enjoyed creating it, I hope you enjoy listening to it.
Bruce Springsteen will release his 21st studio album on CD, 2LP, and all digital platforms.
In this personal video below Bruce details how this project came to fruition.
Watch Springsteen’s “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” video directed by Thom Zimny here:
Only the Strong Survive tracklist:
1. “Only the Strong Survive” (Jerry Butler)
2. “Soul Days” feat. Sam Moore (Dobie Gray)
3. “Nightshift” (The Commodores)
4. “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” (Frank Wilson)
5. “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore” (The Walker Brothers)
6. “Turn Back the Hands of Time” (Tyrone Davis)
7. “When She Was My Girl” (The Four Tops)
8. “Hey, Western Union Man” (Jerry Butler)
9. “I Wish It Would Rain” (The Temptations)
10. “Don’t Play That Song” (Aretha Franklin)
11. “Any Other Way” (Jackie Shane)
12. “I Forgot to Be Your Lover” feat. Sam Moore (William Bell)
13. “7 Rooms of Gloom” (The Four Tops)
14. “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted” (Jimmy Ruffin)
15. “Someday We’ll Be Together” (Diana Ross & The Supremes)