Josh Groban performed his uplifting new single “River” for the first time in the U.S. during the special Central Park broadcast of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” which aired last night (Sept. 20) on NBC. His performance comes just ahead of the release of his new album Bridges, which drops today (Sept. 21).
Groban called “River” a “really personal song” via social media before he dropped the lyric video near the end of last month. The Grammy and Tony-nominated singer-actor addresses coping with anxiety and feelings of despair in the lines ““this raging world can get so overwhelming/looking for a meaning when it won’t make sense” and “in my head it's getting loud/Like I can’t outrun this cloud/No matter where I go well there I am …”
Overall, the song offers hope as he walks to the metaphorical river, or, taps into a place or thing that helps him clear his mind and find peace. Bridges is Groban’s eighth studio album and is a follow up to his Grammy-nominated Broadway musical-themed album, Stages. He co-wrote nine of Bridges’ 12 tracks and it's his first album to contain original songs since his 2013 Billboard 200 chart-topping album All That Echoes.
The multi-talented singer-songwriter was motivated to write the album after his critically-acclaimed, Tony-nominated Broadway debut in “Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812.” He talked about being inspired to make a more “uplifting” album with Bridges in a Newsweek interview, saying “There are some albums, like the last one, where I don’t want to write at all, I just want to be a vocalist. Then there are some where you’re pouring out idea after idea. I’ve had sad albums in the past and I wanted an album that had an uplifting spirit, for my psyche and also for the psyche of listeners. I think we all need that.”
“River” follows the ruminating track “Symphony” and another spirit-bolstering single “Granted.” Bridges also notably features Groban in stunning duets with Andrea Bocelli, Jennifer Nettles and Sarah McLachlan.
Watch Josh Groban’s “Tonight Show” performance of “River” above and stay tuned to AXS for Josh Groban news and updates.