Great Albums Hurt These Amazing Songs: Adele, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen


adele___he_won__t_goNumber #1 album in 30 countries! Grammy For Album Of The Year, over 20,000,000 copies sold worldwide, and the #1 album for 2 weeks shy of six months in a row. Adele’s second CD, 21, had five huge hits: Rolling In The Deep, Someone Like You, Set Fire To The Rain, Rumor Has It, and Turning Tables. Despite this huge success, Adele had another smash hit on the album that never got released as a single. He Won’t Go had a hip hop vibe snuck in between a beautiful piano accompaniment. The lyrics speak of a poison that destroyed a relationship. Adele professed it was about a friend who battled heroin addiction but the song could easily be interpreted in so many personal ways.


michael jackson thrillerThe greatest selling album of all-time had only nine songs on the CD. Seven of the nine were released as singles and all of them reached the Top 10. The music videos for songs like Beat It, Thriller, and Billie Jean set such a high standard for the art form. Yet, Michael’s label could have easily had two more hits if they wanted. Lady In My Life was the slow jam love song that would have marketed Michael as a sexy R&B crooner in the style of Luther Vandross. Baby Be Mine could have easily been released on Off The Wall. The song was a throwback to the disco era perfect for another signature MJ dance. Perhaps it was deemed too similar to previous hits but it deserved to be a single.

springsteen no surrenderSteven Van Zandt campaigned for No Surrender to make the final roster for Bruce Springsteen’s most commercial album, Born In The USA. The album cut was a high energy, passionate rocker that kicked off Side 2 of the album. Despite seven Top 10 songs on Born In The USA, No Surrender was a fan favorite but never released as a single. Bruce does a killer acoustic version of the song. These lyrics have always moved me:

Well, we made a promise we swore we’d always remember
No retreat, baby, no surrender
Like soldiers in the winter’s night
With a vow to defend
No retreat, baby, no surrender

Well, now young faces grow sad and old
And hearts of fire grow cold
We swore blood brothers against the wind
Now I’m ready to grow young again

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