Lucky Town is the tenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bruce Springsteen. The album was released on March 31, 1992, the same day as Springsteen's Human Touch album. Lucky Town peaked at number three on the Billboard 200, with "Better Days" (paired with Human Touch's title track) peaking at number one on the Mainstream Rock and number 16 on the Billboard Hot 100. Lucky Town has since sold more than one million copies in the United States.

Lucky Town
Lucky Town.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 31, 1992
RecordedSeptember 1991 – January 1992
StudioThrill Hill (Colts Neck), A&M (Hollywood)
ProducerBruce Springsteen, Jon Landau, Chuck Plotkin, Roy Bittan [notes 1]
Bruce Springsteen chronology
Human Touch
Lucky Town
In Concert/MTV Plugged
Singles from Lucky Town
  1. "Better Days"
    Released: March 21, 1992
  2. "Leap of Faith"
    Released: October 12, 1992
  3. "If I Should Fall Behind"
    Released: December 15, 1992[1]
  4. "Lucky Town"
    Released: March 29, 1993


Springsteen was working on Human Touch, which he intended to release sometime in 1990, but the project took him longer than he thought. He shelved the project in early 1991 and came back to it in September of the same year. Intending to record one more song for the album ("Living Proof"),[2] he ended up with 10 new songs, which became Lucky Town. Once he completed Lucky Town, he decided to release both albums at the same time. While most of the songs from the album have received few performances since the reunion of the E Street Band, "If I Should Fall Behind" was played at every show during the 1999–2000 Reunion Tour and was included in the Live in New York City DVD and CD release.[3]


Compared to Human Touch, Lucky Town has a more stripped down, folk-based sound and is more personal in its songs' lyrics. Human Touch consisted of mostly love songs, while Lucky Town focuses on more specific events in Springsteen's life.[4] The opening track "Better Days" expresses his desire to start over after some rough patches in his life (his divorce from his first wife).[4] "Living Proof" is about the birth of his first son and "Local Hero" is about a time that he saw a picture of himself in a store window. When he went to buy it, the clerk told him it was a picture of a "local hero."[5] "Souls of the Departed" recalls "Born in the U.S.A." in its sound and social commentary. The song was inspired by the Gulf War.[6]

Critical receptionEdit

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic     [7]
Chicago Tribune    [8]
Christgau's Consumer Guide [9]
Entertainment WeeklyB[10]
Rolling Stone     [11]
Tom HullB–[12]

Upon release the album received generally positive reviews. Rolling Stone gave the album a positive review (a combined review with its companion album, Human Touch), but thought that the aims of the two albums "would have been better realized by a single, more carefully shaped collection."[11] In a mostly positive review, AllMusic said of the album: "While Human Touch was a disappointing album of second-rate material, Lucky Town is an ambitious collection addressing many of Springsteen's major concerns and moving them forward."[7]

Robert Christgau of The Village Voice called it a "ponderous, well-crafted disappointment, a shorter and by most accounts lighter piece of work than its more songful corelease Human Touch."[13] Bill Wyman of The Chicago Reader compared it favorably to Human Touch, calling Lucky Town "obviously the superior work" and "a much more interesting beast, primarily because of the potency of the first three numbers [which] could have made a respectable anchor to a strong album." However, he added that "the record's illegitimate beginnings soon take their toll, and formula returns to the fore...What themes there are on the record - a sort of Catholic wonder and love of life alternating with the usual fears and worries of the characters in Springsteen's ongoing New Jersey gothic - never come alive."[14] Greg Kot of The Chicago Tribune later wrote that Lucky Town was "highly underrated...containing some of the strongest songwriting of Springsteen's career and ranks as one of his most completely realized albums."[15]

In The Village Voice's annual Pazz & Jop critics poll for the year's best albums, Lucky Town placed at number 17 in the voting,[16] way ahead of Human Touch which finished at number 80.[17]

Track listingEdit

All songs are written by Bruce Springsteen.

1."Better Days"4:05
2."Lucky Town"3:24
3."Local Hero"4:02
4."If I Should Fall Behind"2:57
5."Leap of Faith"3:22
6."The Big Muddy"4:04
7."Living Proof"4:44
8."Book of Dreams"4:20
9."Souls of the Departed"4:16
10."My Beautiful Reward"3:55

Unreleased outtakesEdit

Eleven songs were written during these sessions with the song "Happy" being the only outtake and eventually released on the Tracks box set.[18]


  • Bruce Springsteen – guitar, lead vocals, keyboards, bass guitar, harmonica, percussion
  • Gary Mallaber – drums
  • Roy Bittan – keyboards on "Leap of Faith", "The Big Muddy" and "Living Proof"
  • Patti Scialfa – backing vocals on "Better Days", "Local Hero" and "Leap of Faith"
  • Soozie Tyrell – backing vocals on "Better Days", "Local Hero" and "Leap of Faith"
  • Lisa Lowell – backing vocals on "Better Days", "Local Hero" and "Leap of Faith"
  • Randy Jackson – bass guitar on "Better Days"
  • Ian McLaganHammond organ on "My Beautiful Reward"



Certifications and sales for Lucky Town
Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[39] Platinum 70,000^
Austria (IFPI Austria)[40] Gold 25,000*
Canada (Music Canada)[41] 2× Platinum 200,000^
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[42] Gold 28,642[42]
Germany (BVMI)[43] Gold 250,000^
Japan (RIAJ)[45] Gold 110,000[44]
New Zealand (RMNZ)[46] Gold 7,500^
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[47] Platinum 100,000^
Sweden (GLF)[48] Platinum 100,000^
Switzerland (IFPI Switzerland)[49] Gold 25,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[50] Gold 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[51] Platinum 1,000,000^

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ Additional production on "Leap of Faith", "The Big Muddy" and "Living Proof"


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  2. ^ "Bruce Springsteen – Human Touch/Lucky Town – Album Review". March 31, 1992. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
  3. ^ "Live in New York City". March 27, 2001. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
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  5. ^ "Local Hero by Bruce Springsteen". Retrieved May 17, 2012.
  6. ^ "Souls Of The Departed by Bruce Springsteen". September 18, 2003. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
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  9. ^ Christgau, Robert (October 15, 2000). "Bruce Springsteen". Christgau's Consumer Guide: Albums of the '90s. Macmillan Publishing. ISBN 9780312245603.
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  11. ^ a b DeCurtis, Anthony (April 30, 1992). "Lucky Town | Album Reviews". Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
  12. ^ Hull, Tom (October 29, 2016). "Streamnotes (October 2016)". Tom Hull - on the Web. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
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External linksEdit