Released today (October 23rd) is Bruce Springsteen's latest album with the E Street Band, titled Letter To You. The 12-track collection is Springsteen's 20th studio album, and was recorded at his home studio in New Jersey and once again co-produced with Ron Aniello. The set's release coincides with the 40th anniversary of "The Boss'" classic double album The River — which was released on October 17th, 1980.
Springsteen said of the new album in the official announcement, "I love the emotional nature of Letter To You. And I love the sound of the E Street Band playing completely live in the studio. . . We made the album in only five days, and it turned out to be one of the greatest recording experiences I’ve ever had."
Letter To You includes nine recently written Springsteen songs — alongside new recordings of three of his legendary — but previously unreleased — compositions from the early-1970's: "Janey Needs A Shooter," "Song For The Orphans," and the iconic "If I Was The Priest."
Also released today is the new film, also titled, Letter To You, which chronicled the recording sessions, and runs exclusively on Apple TV+. The feature-length verite documentary features full performances from the E Street Band, in-studio footage, never-before-seen archival material and a deeper look into Letter To You from Springsteen himself.
In a new chat with Apple Music, Bruce Springsteen broke down how the recent E Street Band sessions compared with those in the past: ["I don't think that we played live in the studio and then kept everything that we did on the full take. It's really, it's the E Street Band really completely live and I overdubbed a few solos and things. But, it's really the band in one shot. So that's. . . We've played live in the studio before, but never kept everything; always went back in and overdubbed a vocal, or overdubbed — y'know, put other things on. So, it was a great experience for the guys and a testament to how good the band has gotten."] SOUNDCUE (:31 OC: . . . band has gotten)
Steve Van Zandt explained why the E Street Band has been able to serve Bruce Springsteen's music in a way no other group of musicians could: ["He picked guys that could handle a wide variety of things and could basically follow orders. We had a really fast, 'know, ability to learn. Every one of us — there was a lot of spontaneity goin' on in the show. A lot. We, we gotta move like one thing, one entity, y'know, no matter what move he makes. Y'know, he never does a song the same way twice."] SOUNDCUE (:20 OC: . . . same way twice)
The tracklist to Bruce Springsteen's Letter To You is:
"One Minute You’re Here"
"Letter To You"
"Janey Needs A Shooter"
"Last Man Standing"
"The Power Of Prayer"
"House Of A Thousand Guitars"
"If I Was The Priest"
"Song For Orphans"
"I’ll See You In My Dreams"