by Little StevenLittle Steven


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Little Steven didn't precisely abandon his solo career, but he did stop recording his own albums after 1999's Born Again Savage. He had a few things to keep him busy, including newfound stardom as a television star thanks to The Sopranos and a reunited E Street Band, not to mention philanthropy and the development of his own record label (Wicked Cool) and radio station (Little Steven's Underground Garage). When he finally found the time to record 2017's Soulfire, he decided the best course of action was to ditch the big political statements that characterized his '80s work and instead craft a statement of personal purpose. Anybody who has followed his music, either on his own or with Bruce Springsteen, will find Soulfire comfortably bracing: it's big, brassy, and soulful, and the E Street shuffle is on full fire. Little Steven finds space for a few detours from this route -- "Blues Is My Business" is naturally a blues tune, "The City Weeps Tonight" is built on street corner doo wop, "Down and Out in New York City" glides along on a funky, sleazy '70s groove -- but these accentuate how his music is a synthesis of all the sounds he's kept alive since the '60s. He blends bold soul with the roar of a teenage rock & roll combo, happy to nod toward his influences ("Love on the Wrong Side of Town" opens with guitars ringing just like the Byrds) while keeping his eye on the present. If Soulfire often sounds like Springsteen circa the late '70s, that's because Little Steven served as the Boss' lieutenant and there are distinct differences between the two as writers. Little Steven may share the same sense of grandeur in his sonics, but he keeps his focus earthbound, and that provides a nice tension to Soulfire: it's big music about everyday things.

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Product Details

Release Date: 05/19/2017
Label: Ume
UPC: 0602557477498
catalogNumber: 002649602


  1. Soulfire
  2. I'm Coming Back
  3. Blues Is My Business
  4. I Saw the Light
  5. Some Things Just Don't Change
  6. Love on the Wrong Side of Town
  7. The City Weeps Tonight
  8. Down and Out in New York City
  9. Standing in the Line of Fire
  10. Saint Valentine's Day
  11. I Don't Want to Go Home
  12. Ride the Night Away

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Little Steven   Primary Artist
Persuasions   Background Vocals
Michael Davis   Trombone,Soloist
Tawatha Agee   Background Vocals
Andy Burton   Piano,Strings,Wurlitzer,Soloist,Hammond B3
Elaine Caswell   Background Vocals
Jack Daley   Bass
Stan Harrison   Flute,Tenor Saxophone,Soloist
Audrey Martells   Background Vocals
Cindy Mizelle   Background Vocals
Daniel Sadownick   Percussion
Kent Smith   Trumpet,Soloist
Clifford Carter   Piano
Steve Jankowski   Trumpet,Soloist
LaJuan Carter   Background Vocals
Marc Ribler   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Pedals
Martha Redbone   Background Vocals
Rich Mercurio   Drums
Jonathan Dinklage   Violin,Viola
John Martin   Trumpet,Soloist
Ed Manion   Horn,Baritone Saxophone
Stevie Van Zandt   Rhythm Guitar,Vocals,Soloist
Ian Gray   Trombone,Soloist
Steven Salcedo   Tenor Saxophone
Dan Nissenbaum   Trumpet,Soloist

Technical Credits

Bruce Springsteen   Composer
Barry De Vorzon   Composer
Gary Anderson   Composer
Todd Cerney   Composer
Bodie Chandler   Composer
Kevin Bowe   Composer
Geoff Sanoff   Producer,Engineer
Marc Ribler   Producer,Music Direction
Laurie C. Anderson   Composer
Jonathan Dinklage   Arranger,String Transcription
Stephen Jordan   Composer
Louis Arzonico   Artwork
Anders Bruus   Composer
Ed Manion   Arranger
Stevie Van Zandt   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Jo Lopez   Cover Photo

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