Something seems to be missing these days. It seems that record companies, radio stations, and streaming services are pushing some the great established musicians to the background. As a result these veteran artists are not getting the attention they deserve. Enter the Top 10 Album Countdown: The New Oldies. The main point is simple – to make this list you must have at least 20 years of producing established music. The album by the artist must have been released between November 1st, 2019 and October 31st, 2020.
#6 Bruce Springsteen – Letter to You
Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You, Springsteen’s first album with the legendary E Street Band in six years lands on the New Oldies #6 Album of the Year.
The way Letter to You was recorded was interesting, Springsteen told the New York Times, “It’s the only album where it’s the entire band playing at one time, with all the vocals and everything completely live. The record is the first record that I’ve made where the subject is the music itself… It’s about popular music. It’s about being in a rock band, over the course of time. And it’s also a direct conversation between me and my fans, at a level that I think they’ve come to expect over the years.”
The album delivers a combination of classic E. Street Band Rock and Roll combined with some of Springsteen power ballads and acoustic sounds.
I mention the classic E. Street Rock and Roll Sound – it’s a combination of Roy Bittan’s piano, Max Weinberg’s drums, Garry Tallent’s bass, Jake Clemons’ saxophone, and the three-headed guitar monster of Springsteen, Little Steven, and Nils Lofgren.
Burnin Train and Ghosts bring out some of the great background vocals the E Street Band has been known for. I can almost see Bruce sharing the microphone with E. Street Band members.
Janey Needs a Shooter delivers a the power ballad in three dimensions. COVID-19 iced plans for Springsteen to tour in 2020, but I still can see myself in the arena with this song. The way this album was recorded was really shown in this song.
There are throwbacks throughout the album, Last Man Standing and The Power of Prayer have Jake Clemons on saxophone reminding everyone where his lineage comes from. Rainmaker almost seemed like a throwback to Born in the USA. If I Was The Priest reminded me what a good storyteller Springsteen is.
The closing track I’ll See You in My Dreams, seems like the perfect album to close out this album. It just had a great closing track feel. However after listening to this album, Springsteen (even at age 71) is showing no signs of slowing down.
Note: Albums 5-1 will appear beginning Monday January 18, 2021 (or Tuesday January 19 in Australia)