New Mellencamp album set for January release

John Mellencamp’s forthcoming new release, “Strictly a One-Eyed Jack.”

Seymour native John Mellencamp’s new album “Strictly A One-Eyed Jack,” his 25th studio effort, is set for release Jan. 21 on Republic Records. Pre-order for the LP has begun, according to publicists.

The latest single and lyric video is for the song “Chasing Rainbows.”

The album also features the previously released Bruce Springsteen duet “Wasted Days,” which has earned substantial attention.

The late Johnny Cash once referred to Mellencamp as “among our greatest living songwriters.”

Recently, revivalists for Columbus’ classic Crump Theatre highlighted the 45th anniversary of Mellencamp’s performance there with his Tiger Force Band in October 1976. His sold-out, second concert there unfolded in Sept. 2008 for an Arts & Entertainment Biography network special, “Homeward Bound.”

His professional music career began in earnest as Johnny Cougar in 1976 when MCA Records released his first album, “The Chestnut Street Incident.” His first hit came in 1979 with “I Need a Lover.”

Mellencamp was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008 and is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He’s a Grammy-winner and the recipient of numerous awards, including The Woody Guthrie and John Steinbeck Awards, ASCAP Foundation’s Champion Award and their highest honor, the Founders Award, the Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriting and the Billboard Century Award, among a host of other honors.

The artist’s self-narrated musical journey “Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre,” premiered on Netflix in February 2018 and was released on DVD+CD and Blu-Ray+CD. The film presents Mellencamp and his full band performing at the Chicago Theatre in October 2016,and blends performance footage with personal commentary from Mellencamp himself.

The Good Samaritan Tour, a new live album and documentary, was released in July of this year. The documentary, which is narrated by Academy Award-winner Matthew McConaughey, chronicles Mellencamp’s historic free tour in 2000 when he performed on street corners and in public parks across the country.