John Mellencamp has shared a previously-unreleased track from the upcoming extended version of his 1985 album Scarecrow.

A lyric video for the song, titled “Smart Guys,” can be seen below.

Mercury/UMe will reissue the record in a range of editions on Nov. 4, including a super deluxe box set containing a 2CD version of the remastered LP plus outtakes and alternative versions, a 2022 Atmos mix on Blu-ray, a 180g LP, picture-sleeve “Small Town” single, photo book, lithographs, a poster and an essay.

“The reason we made that record was because we were noticing that the landscape of Indiana was changing,” Mellencamp told CBS News in 2017. “All the small towns were going out of business. Why? … Because everybody went to live in the city? No. It was because that corporate farming had moved in and run the small family farmer out of business. Which is why we started Farm Aid.”

He added that he’d had no choice but to move away from his earlier pop-rock sound because “the critics in the beginning hated me. … There was no place for John Mellencamp in the music business. I had to create my own job and create my own genre, and consequently do what I think they now call Americana.”

Mellencamp will undertake a 76-date tour of North America, commencing on Feb. 5 at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN and closing on Jun. 24 at the Morris Performing Arts Center in South Bend, IN. Tickets are on sale now. The new version of Scarecrow is available for pre-order.

John Mellencamp - ‘Smart Guys’

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A pre-fab pop singer turned heartland rocker turned rootsy moralist, John Mellencamp has had almost as many career turns as names. 

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