When John Mellencamp was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008, Billy Joel remarked that, "People need to hear a voice like yours to echo the discontent that's in the heartland. They need to hear stories about it. They need to know that someone out there feels the way they do." Though Mellencamp has never sought to be the voice of the Small Town, his stories of struggle, loss, perseverance, and love have spoken to the American heartland for more than forty years.
For his 24th album, though, Mellencamp applies his knack for storytelling to ten staples from the American music canon. Entitled Other People's Stuff, the album of hand-picked covers old and new will be released on CD and digital December 7 from Republic Records. A black vinyl pressing will on December 21.
The material for this new collection is culled mostly from his own albums, hard-to-find compilations, and documentary soundtracks. However, Mellencamp recorded a brand-new version of "Eyes on the Prize," a standard that he had performed at The White House for the 2010 Celebration of Music from the Civil Rights Movement at the request of President Obama.
"Most, if not all, of the songs on Other People's Stuff come from The Great American Songbook," Mellencamp said about the new collection. "These are songs that have been recorded over the last 40 years of my career, but had never been put together as one piece of work. Now, they have."
Mellencamp's tribute to classic American music arrives on December 7 and you can hear the new single, "Eyes on the Prize," now. You can find that song, as well as pre-order links and the full track listing for Other People's Stuff below.
- To The River
- Gambling Bar Room Blues
- Teardrops Will Fall
- In My Time Of Dying
- Mobile Blue
- Eyes On The Prize *
- Dark As a Dungeon
- Stones In My Passway
- Wreck Of The Old 97
- I Don't Know Why I Love You
Track 1 from Human Wheels (Mercury, 1993)
Track 2 from The Songs Of Jimmie Rodgers (A Tribute) (Egyptian/Columbia, 1997)
Tracks 3 and 8 from Trouble No More (Columbia, 2003)
Track 4 from Rough Harvest (Mercury, 1999)
Track 5 from Sad Clowns & Hillbillies (Republic, 2017)
Track 6 previously unreleased new recording
Track 7 from Republic digital single, 2017 - from the National Geographic documentary From The Ashes
Track 9 from The Rose & The Briar: Death, Love and Liberty In The American Ballad (Columbia/Legacy, 2004)
Track 10 from Conception: An Interpretation Of Stevie Wonder's Songs (Motown, 2003)