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|Donovan's Greatest Hits
Lowest new price: $5.74
Lowest used price: $3.99
Don's 1969 bestseller is now revamped to give you the original versions of Catch the Wind and Colours , while adding later hits like Atlantis and Barabajagal (Love Is Hot) to the original tracklisting that features such classics as Mellow Yellow; Sunshine Superman; There Is a Mountain; Season of the Witch; Jennifer Juniper , and Hurdy Gurdy Man .
Greatest Hits is the budget option for those who've concluded that two discs of Donovan is a disc too many and zero is one too few. Troubadour, Sony's 1992 Donovan box set, boasts nearly three times the tracks this 15-song single-disc retrospective offers, but Greatest Hits delivers what it promises: "Colours" and "Catch the Wind" from his folkie phase and "Mellow Yellow," "Sunshine Superman," and "Wear Your Love Like Heaven" from the lad's best-pal-a-flower-ever-had period. Also included are plenty more catchy folk-rock hits cut between 1964 and 1970 as well as four bonus tracks, including the delightfully earnest "Atlantis" and "Barabajagal," with the celebrated first-edition Jeff Beck Group providing backing. Donovan's blissed-out liner notes ("Whatever you think this song is about, it probably is") round out the package quite quaintly. --Steven Stolder
|The Very Best of Marvin Gaye
Lowest new price: $9.57
Lowest used price: $2.74
Two-CD set. Includes 34 classic tracks plus an unreleased track and rarities all newly digitally remasted. Track listing includes "How Sweet It is," "It Takes Two," "What's Going On," plus many more favorites.
Another Marvin Gaye overview/introduction? Why not? Pulling together the usual hits from "I'll Be Doggone" to "Grapevine," "What's Going On" to "Let's Get It On" to "Sexual Healing"--all musts for any R&B or pop fan--this two-CD set also offers treats for the Marvin connoisseur. Foremost are the previously unreleased "Where Are We Going?" which marries Nixon-era (and beyond) social concerns to a lilting groove that brings to mind Spinners records of the period, and an alternate mix of Gaye's rare version of "His Eye Is on the Sparrow." Very Best also pays proper tribute to Gaye's final years at Motown with the full 11-plus minutes of the intensely, casually funky "Got to Give It Up," Here, My Dear's smoldering "Anger," and several tracks from the under-heard Love Man/In Our Lifetime sessions. More than just a profit-generating package from the parent company, it's a loving, rounded selection that's sure to widen newcomers' perceptions of a great artist's creativity and spirit. --Rickey Wright
Lowest new price: $14.00
Lowest used price: $12.97
It s one of the lost classics of the 60s, a psychedelic masterpiece drenched in colour and inspired by life, love, poverty, rebellion, and, of course, jumpers, coke, sweet mary jane . The album is Cold Fact, and what s more intriguing is that its maker a shadowy figure known as Rodriguez was, for many years, lost too. A decade ago, he was rediscovered working on a Detroit building site, unaware that his defining album had become not only a cult classic, but for the people of South Africa, a beacon of revolution. Sixto Diaz Rodriguez was born in 1942 to Mexican immigrant parents in Detroit, Michigan. He recorded Cold Fact his debut album in 1969, and released it in March 1970. It s crushingly good stuff, filled with tales of bad drugs, lost love, and itchy-footed songs about life in late 60s inner-city America. Gun sales are soaring/Housewives find life boring/Divorce the only answer/Smoking causes cancer, says the Dylan-esque Establishment Blues. But the album sank without trace, thanks, in part, to some of Rodriguez s more idiosyncratic behavior, like performing at an industry showcase with his back to the audience throughout. As his music career became a memory, Rodriguez s legend was growing on the other side of the world. In South Africa and, to a lesser extent, Rhodesia, Australia and New Zealand, Cold Fact had become a major word of mouth success, particularly among young people in the South African armed forces, who identified with its counter-cultural bent. But Rodriguez was an enigma not even the label knew where to find him and his demise became the subject of debate and conjecture. Some rumors said he d died of a heroin overdose or burned to death on stage. But the tide began to turn in 1996, when journalist Craig Bartholemew set out to get to the bottom of the mystery. After many dead ends, he found Rodriguez alive, well, free and perfectly sane in Detroit, ending years of speculation. Rodriguez himself had no idea about his fame in South Africa (the album had gone multi-platinum, Rodriguez has received not so much as a Rand in royalties), and embarked on a triumphant South African tour followed, filling 5,000 capacity venues across the country. Rodriguez was still largely unknown in the northern hemisphere until 2002, when Sugar Man, the album s extra-terrestrially wonderful lead track, was picked up by David Holmes. The DJ discovered the album in a New York record store, and included it on his Come Get It, I Got It compilation, re-recording the song with Rodriguez for his Free Association project a year later. Now, Light In The Attic is set to commit Cold Fact to CD for audiences in the UK and America, who can finally find out why halfway across the world Rodriguez is spoken of in the same reverent tones as The Doors, Love and Jimi Hendrix.
|The Best of the Temptations
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Lowest used price: $4.68
Import only 2 CD set. Universal.
The Temptations have long had the reputation for being able to out-sing, out-dress, and out-dance any vocal group in sight. Their earliest hits featured either the grits-and-gravy stylings of David Ruffin ("My Girl," "I Wish It Would Rain") or the gossamer falsetto of Eddie Kendricks ("The Way You Do the Things You Do," "You're My Everything"). Replacing Ruffin with Dennis Edwards, the group went to a five-lead-voices concept ("Cloud Nine," "I Can't Get Next to You," "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone") that kept them in hits for another two decades. This 46-song, 2 CD set sports every one of these classics, an incredible live! version of "Ol' Man River," the seriously funky &quo;Shakey Ground," the Rick James-assisted "Standing on the Top," and many, many magical musical moments more. Bassman Melvin Franklin, Paul Williams, and the unrelated Otis Williams were the other key members . Recommended reading: Temptations by Otis Williams with Patricia Romanowski (Putman, 1988) and Deliver Us from Temptation by Tony Turner with Barbara Aria (Thunder's Mouth Press, 1992). --Don Waller
|Sly & The Family Stone Greatest Hits
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Lowest used price: $1.94
Sly's first Top 10 album was this 1970 "best-of"; one of the best party/summer records ever, it caps off the band's recent reissue series. The smashes Dance to the Music; Everyday People; Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin); I Want to Take You Higher , and Hot Fun in the Summertime join Stand!; Life; M'Lady , and more!
|Superfly (1972 Film)
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Lowest used price: $4.66
Rhino remastered single disc edition w/2 bonus tracks Superfly & Freddie's Dead (single mixes). Classic album!
The term "classic" is tossed about a lot these days, and when it's being used to describe everything from Coke to a Janet Jackson CD, the term is shady. But take my word that the 1972 soundtrack to the blaxploitation film Superfly is a true classic. Why? Because 25 years after its release, the songs still ring true and sound fresh. A morality tale set to funky grooves and plaintive vocals, Superfly is the zenith of Mayfield's socially aware songwriting, recounting the highs and lows of the thug life and the no-win ghetto game of hustling. It's hard to believe, but a doom-filled ode to screwing up ("Freddie's Dead") was actually a big hit during the Nixon years. Truth be told, the record sounds as good, if not better, today and should be in everyone's collection. --Amy Linden
|Future Starts Here: The Essential Doors Hits
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Lowest used price: $2.79
2007 marked the 40th anniversary of the formation of The Doors and their explosive self-titled EP, one of rock music's most stunning debuts. Rhino continues its landmark celebration of the band's enduring legacy and their extraordinary catalog with a brand new compilation packing twenty of their most definitive hits on one must-have disc. All of the classic songs boast sonically superior 40th Anniversary Mixes by The Doors' original engineer/producer, Bruce Botnick
Lowest new price: $5.13
Lowest used price: $1.55
With that day-glo cover and Sunshine of Your Love ! Also from 1967.
Fresh Cream, the album that introduced this seminal super-blues trio to America, was perhaps a bit too blues-based to do the advance hype ("Clapton is God!") justice. Two of its three best-known tracks, after all, were blues covers. It was Disraeli Gears that turned Cream into a "supergroup." Here they pursue the psychedelic ideals of the era with total abandon (the LP cover art still stands as one of the 1960s' most striking designs), merging these ideals with their take on the blues and adorning the amalgamation with some superb pop craftsmanship. Of the eleven originals here, four--"Tales of Brave Ulysses," "SWLABR," "Strange Brew," and "Sunshine of Your Love"--earned major airplay. This, their excess-free greatest moment, does the Cream legend proud. --Bill Holdship
- Record Label: Polydor
- Catalog#: 531 811-2
- Country Of Release: EU
- Year Of Release: 1997
Lowest new price: $11.42
Lowest used price: $4.01
The lone album from the supergroup of Baker, Clapton, Winwood and Grech didn't live up to expectations, but features the great Can't Find My Way Home; Presence of the Lord , and Sea of Joy .
The short-lived classic-rock supergroup Blind Faith's sole album has aged remarkably well. In 1969, Blind Faith fused the psychedelic blues of Eric Clapton and the soulful vocals and keyboards of Steve Winwood with the polyrhythmic, Afrocentric leanings of drummer Ginger Baker. "Can't Find My Way Home" is one of the hippie era's most lyrically poignant, sonically subtle tunes. The record has a lot of surprises; "Presence of the Lord" is rousing and melancholy at the same time, while the way the bass and guitar double-team on the introductory melodic line to "Had to Cry Today" makes a hard-rock cliché fresh again. The 10-minute drum solo on "Do What You Like" is pretty good as 10-minute drum solos go. This 2000 reissue of the album omits the unreleased jams and mixes that fill the second disc of the deluxe reissue that appeared earlier in the year. --Mike McGonigal
|Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
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Neil Young's second solo album, 1969's Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere cracked the Top 40, went platinum and included three of his most beloved songs, 'Cinnamon Girl' and the nearly 10-minute epics 'Down By The River' and 'Cowgirl In The Sand.' The album also introduced his associated band, Crazy Horse.
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