Monday, June 17, 2024

Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul Get Their Love on the Wrong Side of Town (Listen)


Friday (tomorrow) brings the first album by Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul in a generation. You know Steve van Zandt from the E Street Band. We also know him from his own solo career for furthering the career of Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes.

On “Soulfire,” the new album, the Disciples cover a couple of Southside songs written by van Zandt including “I Don’t Want to Go Home” and “Love on the Wrong Side of Town.” The latter was co-written with a guy named Bruce Springsteen. When Little Steven told me was making this new album, I asked if that song would be on it. “No,” he answered and shook his head. His beautiful and smart wife, Maureen, said, “It’s my favorite song. I don’t know why it’s not there.”

I agreed. “Love on the Wrong Side of Town” has long been a favorite of mine. It’s almost a “perfect” rock-pop-soul song. (I often wish Ronnie Spector had recorded it. Steven once recorded her on Billy Joel’s “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” with the E Street Band. It’s on my Desert Island Discs list.) I said, “Steven, I won’t write about the album unless you record that song.” I was kidding, of course.

A few months later, I was told the recording had been done. That I might have had a 5% influence makes me very happy. I love this song. And I love the album. As Southside Johnny sang on another favorite song, “This time it’s for real.”

Take it to the beach, the pool, the picnic. I will have “Soulfire” blaring from my car all summer. What a treat!

bonus live version

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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