Ruben Studdard is back. The seasoned vocalist and American Idol winner has released “The Way I Remember It,” his first single in nine years.
In this sweet, piano-backed ballad, Studdard thinks back in time and searches his heart to brood over his first encounter with his forever lady.
Most of his inspiration for “The Way I Remember It” dwells in his admiration for Luther Vandross, favoring velvety vocals and a befitting production choice.
Studdard describes “The Way I Remember It” as a “classic love song written and produced by Balewa Muhammad.” He adds, “It’s just the kind of Luther-style ballad folks have been waiting for from me.”
“The Way I Remember It” is Studdard’s lead single from his first album for SoNo Recording Group (SRG/ILS). Studdard announced the new deal in April, promising new music in the coming weeks.
“I am truly excited to join a label that is always looking out for their artists and making sure that whatever they release, it’s great music that is impactful to the culture,” Studdard said in a previous statement.
There are not many additional details about Studdard’s forthcoming untitled studio album. He is working alongside Muhammad on the record. The latter has succeeded in the studio with the likes of Vandross, Mariah Carey, Ciara and Fantasia.
Studdard’s next album will mark his first album of new material since 2014’s Unconditional Love. Since then, Studdard gave Vandross his flowers with a tribute album, Ruben Sings Luther Vandross, released in 2018. Studdard toured the album that same year.
Touring is top of mind for Studdard now. He recently wrapped a leg of his co-headlining Twenty The Tour with American Idol alum Clay Aiken, who was runner-up to Studdard in season two of the singing competition.
The joint tour resumes Sept. 23 at Arcadia Performing Arts Center in Arcadia, California. Tickets are available at rubenandclay.com.
Listen to Ruben Studdard’s new song “The Way I Remember It” below.