Men Without Women (album)

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Men Without Women
Studio album by
RecordedThe Power Station
The Hit Factory
Clover Studios, Los Angeles
LabelEMI America Records
Capitol Records
Razor & Tie
BGO Records
ProducerSteven Van Zandt
Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul chronology
Men Without Women
Voice of America
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4.5/5 stars[1]
Robert ChristgauB−[2]

Men Without Women, credited to Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul, is the debut solo album by Steven Van Zandt, a member of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band and a songwriter / producer with the Jersey Shore band Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes. The title track was inspired by the Ernest Hemingway collection of short stories of the same name.

In 1980 Van Zandt produced Dedication, a comeback album for Gary U.S. Bonds. Gary Gersh, who was in charge of the Bonds album at EMI America Records, subsequently approached Van Zandt and indicated that the label would be interested in a Van Zandt solo project.[3] In November 1981 Van Zandt began recording the album at The Power Station, using musicians from The E Street Band, The Asbury Jukes and The Miami Horns. Among the songs recorded at these sessions were "Inside Of Me", "Princess of Little Italy" and "I've Been Waiting," originally written by Van Zandt for the Jukes album Hearts Of Stone. Springsteen also took part in these sessions, providing backing vocals on "Angel Eyes", "Until The Good Is Gone" and "Men Without Women". Springsteen’s contributions, however, went uncredited but have been confirmed in interview by Van Zandt.[4][5][6]

Before finishing Men Without Women, Van Zandt produced a second Bonds album, On the Line, and also began recording Born in the U.S.A. with Springsteen. By Summer 1982, Van Zandt had recruited his own band, The Disciples of Soul, featuring Dino Danelli and Jean Beauvoir, and it was this line up that completed the album, recording "Under the Gun" and "Lyin' in a Bed of Fire". Van Zandt had also decided to adopt the pseudonym Little Steven, partly to distance himself from any Springsteen comparisons and partly as a tribute to Little Richard and Little Walter. On July 18, 1982 Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul made their live debut at the Peppermint Lounge.[6][7] The concert was filmed for video release and as a companion to the album. On May 13 the film version of Men Without Women was given a European premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.[8]

As a single, "Forever" spent nine weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #63. The album did little better, reaching only #118 on the Billboard 200. A music video for "Forever" was played in heavy rotation on early MTV. "Inside of Me" was later featured on The Sopranos in which Van Zandt himself also starred.[9]

On July 2, 2011, the album was performed in its entirety by Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ. Richie La Bamba, Mark Pender, Ed Manion and Stan Harrison from the original Disciples of Soul were part of the horn section.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Steven Van Zandt

  1. "Lyin' in a Bed of Fire" – 4:34
  2. "Inside of Me" – 5:07
  3. "Until the Good Is Gone" – 3:54
  4. "Men Without Women" – 2:43
  5. "Under the Gun" – 4:01
  6. "Save Me" – 4:50
  7. "Princess of Little Italy" – 5:09
  8. "Angel Eyes" – 4:31
  9. "Forever" – 4:00
  10. "I've Been Waiting" – 3:54





  • Steven Van Zandt – producer, arranger
  • Bob Clearmountain – engineer, mixing on "Forever"
  • Toby Scott – engineer on "Under the Gun", "Lyin' in a Bed of Fire" and "I've Been Waiting"
  • Garry Rindfuss – additional engineer
  • Zoë Yanakis – assistant engineer
  • Josh Abbey – assistant engineer
  • Malcolm Pollack – assistant engineer
  • Dana Bisbee – assistant engineer
  • Bobby Cohen – assistant engineer
  • Wally Traugott – mastered at Capitol Records, Los Angeles



Chart (1982) Position
U.S. Billboard 200 118
Swedish Albums Chart[12] 26


Single Chart (1982) Position
"Forever" U.S. Billboard Hot 100 63
"Forever" Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks[13] 39
"Forever" Norwegian Singles Chart[14] 23
"Forever" Dutch Singles Chart[15] 23
"Lyin' in a Bed of Fire" Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks 30


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Robert Christgau review
  3. ^ Marsh, Dave. Glory Days: Bruce Springsteen in the 1980s. Pantheon Books, 1987. ISBN 0-394-54668-7
  4. ^ a b Brucebase 1981
  5. ^ a b Bruce Springsteen guest appearances
  6. ^ a b Archived 2000-08-23 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ a b Max Weinberg with Robert Santelli. The Big Beat: Conversations with Rock's Great Drummers. Contemporary Books, 1987
  8. ^ Patrick Humphries and Chris Hunt: Springsteen - Blinded By The Light (1985)
  9. ^ Soprano's music takes the track less traveled (dead link; archive link)
  10. ^
  11. ^ Archived 2010-07-04 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ "Swedish Charts > Little Steven". Retrieved 2012-03-17.
  13. ^ "Little Steven & the Disciples of Soul Songs (Top Songs / Chart Singles Discography)", Music Vf. Retrieved 2012-03-17.
  14. ^ "Norwegian Charts > Little Steven". Retrieved 2012-03-17.
  15. ^ "Dutch Charts > Little Steven (in Dutch)". Retrieved 2012-03-17.